Roller Coaster Abuse

At the Great Escape yesterday, I wanted to see how many trips you had to take on The Comet before it started getting monotonous. The answer? Twelve.

It was early and there was no line, so it was on and off and on and off, front car, rear car, middle car, arms up, arms down, eyes open, eyes closed, and various combinations thereof.

I was supposed to be there as the responsible adult for my teenager and his friend, so I camped out at a picnic table and read a book. On my way to the bathroom, I nearly collided with a park worker dressed as the hated Mr. Six. The Six Flags “More Flags More Fun” commercials make me want to strangle someone; I had an urge to throw Mr. Six under the wheels of the Storytown Train, but instead just went back to my reading.

When my son was eight or nine we spent most of a day riding the Great Escape roller coasters over and over. It was September and crowds were light, so we rode every coaster as many times as we could. On the way home he was feeling woozy, and by bedtime had a headache. All I could think was, “Oh, my god! I’ve given my kid a roller coaster concussion!”

How am I going to explain this when my wife gets home from her trip out of town?

That night, I woke him up every hour to make sure he wasn’t exhibiting dizziness or confusion; since these are also the same symptoms you get from being woken up once an hour, diagnosis was complicated.

I decided the next day that he probably didn’t have any roller coaster brain damage, but whenever there’s a moody outburst or he forgets something, I start to wonder. Could this explain that grade he got in Spanish? We may never know.

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