Thursday, September 21, 2006

News Tidbits
  • Valleyfair is doing our job for us: "For an American Coaster Enthusiast, riding Renegade is like lickin’ butter off a knife (something that’s easy)." (We might have added "Though they won't be able to ride Renegade every day, like they lick butter off a knife every day.)

  • Also, in what universe is this a fun fact? "The song 'Renegade' was a 1979 hit for American rock band Styx." It's really more of a reminder of a national embarrassment.

  • Coming up next season, Sesame Place will, if there is a just God, introduce Elmo Xtreme, a 200-foot 4D steel coaster featuring blaring metal-rap Sesame Street song covers.


Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Disney Exec Discusses California Adventure Overhaul

Theme park aficionados have been buzzing about Disney CEO Bob Iger's announcement that he plans to rescue the company's California Adventure park from its current state of mediocrity. Disney's California Adventure has long been maligned for its uninspired theme, lack of engaging attractions, and general absence of entertainment. Iger's plan reportedly includes considerable financial expenditure, and will result in a complete overhaul of the structure of the park over the next decade.

Traditionally, Disney executives have been less than forthcoming with details of future projects. But in an exclusive interview with ARN&R, Iger slightly pulled back the curtain of mystery surrounding one facet of this monumental renovation. Late this year, the parkÂ?s flight simulator Soarin' Over California will be closed, to be replaced in 2008 by a brand new attraction: Saruman Over California. The ride's IMAX projection screens and unique inverted simulator system will remain in place, but instead of experiencing a lighthearted aerial tour of the Golden State, guests will be menaced by the evil white wizard portrayed by Christopher Lee.

"It's going to be great," said Iger, finishing off his fifth El Presidente margarita. "The story is that Saruman wants to turn California into the new Isengard, and our guests get caught right in the middle. Dragons, orcs, those things that look like the Harry Potter dementors...this is going to have it all."

"You could say that it's one ride to rule them all," Iger chuckled, to the groans of nearby Chili's patrons.

The ride's Saruman footage is reportedly culled from unsatisfactory outtakes from the Lord of the Rings trilogy, purchased from New Line Cinema at a heavily discounted price. Iger says not to worry; Disney isn't reverting back to their frugal ways with the "new" California Adventure.

"Wait until you see the queue for this thing! And the souvenir shop at the ride's exit!" Iger gushed. "Who can stand against the combined might of Saruman and Walt Disney Imagineering? Nobody, that's who."


Friday, September 15, 2006

Enthusiast’s Vanity License Plate Causes Derisive Comments, Honking

Derek Gerretsen simply can’t figure out what the problem is.

“Everywhere I go, it’s the same thing,” said the 35 year old coaster enthusiast and owner of a 1986 Pontiac Fiero. “I can’t even drive down the street anymore without some pinhead honking his horn like crazy, or a carload full of teenagers calling me a bone smoker or a meat mogul. Just the other day, two high school girls in a Miata threw some opened mayonnaise packets through my passenger side window and told me to go back to Gaytown, wherever that is.

“I’ve tried to even ask a few of them why they’re yelling such terrible things at me, but so far they’ve all told me to go back to knob gobbling or practicing my skin flute. I’m totally confused.”

But David Allen, Gerretsen’s co-worker at StrandCo Electrical Supply, knows exactly what’s going on. “Derek is a total mouthbreather,” Allen told ARN&R. “All he ever does is talk about the road trips he takes on the weekends and vacation to those stupid amusement parks. I got trapped working with him in shipping and receiving a few months ago, and he wouldn’t shut up about how he got 50 rides on some 'woodie' coaster called the Vonage, or the Voyage, or something like that.

“I was so tired of hearing him babble, I told him he should get a vanity license plate for that crappy car that said that he loved wood. I’ll be damned if the guy didn’t show up with one a few weeks later. Everyone here was laughing at him, but he doesn’t have a clue to what’s so funny. What an incredible tool that guy is.”

Gerretsen has yet to realize the connection between his custom license plate and his near-daily castigation on the streets of Johan Heights, Indiana. “I was surprised that it was still available,” said the oblivious Gerretsen, pointing at his plate that reads ILUVWOOD. “I thought I’d get stuck with something else, like MEANSTRK, or GRSTLAUR. But I got lucky, and it goes so nicely with my Judge Roy Scream bumper sticker!

“David at my work actually gave me the idea. That guy is pretty cool. There’s rumors of an ACE event at Mt. Olympus sometime next year. Maybe I’ll ask him if he wants to go and split a site at the Dell Boo Campground.”

“Go on a road trip with that guy? In that car?” asked Allen, when informed of Gerretsen’s possible invitation. “No thanks. I collect Star Wars memorabilia. I’ve got a hard enough time getting dates as it is.”


Friday, September 08, 2006

Inanimate Object Creates MySpace Account, Enthusiasts Crap Pants

Maverick, the Intamin coaster currently under construction at Cedar Point and expected to operate for upwards of fifteen minutes at a time without problems, has created its own MySpace profile, and coaster enthusiasts couldn’t be happier. For many, this may be their only opportunity to make a “friend” on the popular social networking website.

"I am sooo geeked about this!” said MySpace member KitFisto94. “Maverick accepted me right away, unlike most of the stuck-up webcam chicks I’ve contacted. I’m looking forward to a long and prosperous relationship with Maverick.”

IdoraDave agrees. “I’m checking in with Maverick every day. There’s nothing better than logging on to the internet to watch an erection getting bigger.” he said, oblivious to the fleeting look of disgust that passed across this reporter’s face.

Comments on Maverick’s profile have ranged from complimentary (Tyler is 1/4 BLACK: “Sick layout, Maverick”), to perplexing (Marissa: “I am wonder what going like a new roller coaster next year!!!!”), to the downright salacious (Koaster Kris: “Im hoping to make it back out to Ohio again especially next year to ride you! W00t!” and Jordan: “i've decided i will propose to you in the morning”). [Ed. note: We're not even going to try to use all of the [sic]s that would be necessary for this story.]

“This is not uncommon behavior, especially for such a traditionally unsociable group as coaster enthusiasts.” said noted psychologist Don Petersen. “It’s known as ‘personification’. Many of these people lead sad and sheltered lives, with very few real and enriching relationships. They begin to see this partially completed structure as a surrogate friend of sorts, and begin addressing it as if it were a corporeal being.

“Most of them probably don’t even realize that their comments to an inert hunk of metal make them sound like sexual deviants when taken out of context. Take James Crochford, for example, and his statement ‘Oh boy Maverick! Despite only being 105 feet tall I'm still excited to ride you.’. Most people reading this statement with no background information would assume that Mr. Crochford has some form of giantess fetish that isn’t being satisfied. Sadly, the truth that he’s actually speaking to a spiritless load of metal is far more shameful.

“People talking to roller coasters. This has got to be one of the most whacked-out things I’ve ever heard.” Petersen later muttered, in what he assumed was an off-the-record statement.

And as Maverick’s profile continues to fill with incomprehensible gibberish ((andrei geos to the mayer)**%: “i thought it was goin over the water then what explain all the cemet barges out ther to hold rollar coaster track out huh!!!!”), the world wonders; what’s next? We here at ARN&R predict that this signals the beginning of a new onslaught, as everything from Dippin' Dots stands ("MySpace Site of the Future," no doubt) to pieces of Six Flags Great America's Shockwave will carve out their niche on the MySpace site, finally allowing enthusiasts to brag that they have “hundreds” of friends.


Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Powered Coasters Feel ACE Executive's Wrath

Henry Booker, an Executive Committee member of the American Coaster Enthusiasts, as well as winner of this year's prestigious ACE Lifetime Tool Award, has finally, after years of debate among coaster enthusiasts, laid down the law on counting powered coasters in one's track record.

"The ACE Executive Committee has determined that no member shall be allowed to list these rides in his or her coaster count," said Booker in a recent exclusive interview with ARN&R. "You see, powered coasters can't be considered coasters because at no time, not even when going down a hill, is gravity ever used."

"And as much as I claim to like RCDB, I'm sorry to announce that from this point on, it is considered contraband to all ACE members," he noted. "Anyone who uses to determine what are coasters and can be counted in their track record will be executed. If you have ever used to determine your track record, or if you currently or have ever counted powered coasters in your track record, then you will meet your destiny."

"You will never convince me that a powered Dragon Wagon is a coaster," said Booker. "I've been on 534 coasters! I know what is and what isn't a coaster! And not only that, but the Kangaroo at Kennywood will no longer be referred to as a 'Flying Coaster.' It neither flies, nor coasts. We are hereby boycotting Kennywood as well, and any ACE member caught riding the Kangaroo will be summarily disemboweled."

Booker then cut the interview short, indicating that he needed to drive up to Dorney Park and make his 347th attempt to harass the ride operators into letting him ride the Little Laser.


Sunday, September 03, 2006

Don't Sign Us Up

It's been a while, but the Site O' the Weak is back with us in full force today, as we alert our faithful readers to their right to sign up here for a PKI Central-guided trip to various Ohio amusement parks. Whether anyone will exercise that God-given right, is, of course, a matter for some conjecture, seeing as the tour is apparently being conducted by young children.

Judging from the colorful and patriotic design of the tour sales website (because not giving PKI Central money is a slap in the face of all Americans and what this proud nation stands for), its informative nature, its abundance of exclamation points, and its creative spelling, we'll, of course, be happy to plunk down the vague 200 to 250 dollars to do...well, we aren't exactly sure what yet. Presumably it will involve a BIG SURPRISE. Or perhaps the BIG SURPRISE will be that we send two hundred bucks to people and never see it again? We'll know soon, of course, since the BIG SURPRISE is "comming soon." But not yet.

We're very certain we'll see you all there.