May 24, 2024
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May 24, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

If you go on Chol Hamoed trips, at some point you’re going to find yourself at an amusement park.

Amusement parks are great, because you can pay one flat admission to spend the entire day doing lots of fun things, such as waiting in line.

And a lot of the time you’re not even sure what the line is for. “What is this line for? I don’t even see the amusement park yet!” And it doesn’t help that a lot of the lines snake back and forth like they do at the bank, so it’s not even like you can pass the time by looking around. All you see is lines of people on either side of you going in the opposite direction. And you keep passing those same people over and over. So there’s not much to do while you’re in line but consult your park map for the 18th time and figure out where you’re going to go next. The map seems to be 90% sure you’re heading for an ATM machine.

So since we’re waiting around anyway, we’re going to take the opportunity to talk about some of the rides so that you know what they are, because, as an adult especially, it’s worth it to know what the rides are before you spend hours waiting in line, snaking around corners, all for you to get to the front and take one look and go, “Nope.”

Roller Coaster

A roller coaster is like an express train that for some reasons sometimes goes upside down and then lets you off where you got on, except without everything that was in your pockets.

But actually, I think way more people would take the train to work if it was more like a roller coaster. Ties would be flapping back, business papers would be flying all over the place, but it would be fun. People would love going to work. Though the wait time for the train would be impossible.

I personally am not a roller coaster guy. I especially don’t like wooden roller coasters. But roller coaster aficionados really get into them, because they’re historic. After all, the very first roller coasters were made of wood. They also didn’t have seatbelts.

Another historic ride whose age you don’t want to think about is the:

Ferris Wheel

Ferris wheels are nice, slow rides for people who don’t like fast ones, but aren’t afraid of heights at all. In fact, they’re so slow that sometimes they come to a complete stop for like 20 minutes, and that’s just part of the ride. You’re just 500 feet in the air, rocking back and forth, back and forth.

Oh, and there aren’t even seatbelts. And your kids are jumping up and down, turning around in their seats and pointing and going, “Look over there! Look over there!” And you’re slightly hunkered down, yelling, “Don’t look over there! Stop pointing at things!”

Pirate Ship

The pirate ship is another great ride to go on if you love mixing heights with the feeling of looking down and seeing all the gears and belts that keep the ride rolling.

The pirate ship. Because the most fun part of being on a boat is the part where it almost capsizes. Lengthwise. But apparently, this is how pirate ships generally are. That’s why pirates always have so many injuries. They spend weeks on a boat going, “Aaargh! Aaarrgh!” getting tossed around like clothes in a dryer. Maybe they should stop bringing weapons aboard.

Rapids and Flumes

Rapids and flumes are by far my favorite rides, because I love getting wet at random times. You’d think I can just get wet in my clothes at home, for free, but maybe it’s the not knowing when you’re going to get wet. The rapids especially. With a flume, you know: “I’m going to get wet when I hit the bottom of that hill. But usually not.”

You always remember getting wetter on a flume than you actually get. No one gets off a flume and goes, “That was wetter than I remember.”

With rapids, you’re on this big roulette wheel with seven other people, and you’re going through this gorge with waterfalls on either side of you, and the question is always who’s going to end up under the waterfalls. Two people come off the ride soaked from head to toe, and the other six people come off drier than when they got on, except the part that sat in a puddle.

Anyway, we have to get going, because it’s a short day and we have to get home so we can eat in the sukkah. We’re starving. All we got to eat in the park was yogurt. So maybe we’ll talk about the rest of the rides a different time. I really wanted to talk about more rides today, but there were lines.

Mordechai Schmutter is a freelance writer and a humor columnist for Hamodia, The Jewish Press, and, among others. He also has four books out and does stand-up comedy. You can contact him at [email protected]

By Mordechai Schmutter


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