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Friday, May 02, 2003
Paramount's Carowinds Adds New Themed Land
Attempting to spruce up the themed experience at their park, Paramount's Carowinds executives announced today that they would be opening a new and exciting themed land this season. Work on the makeover and new attractions has been progressing at a feverish pace, and the unique New Age Hippie Weirdo Land is expected to be completed in time for the busy summer influx of customers.
Theming of the New Age Hippie Weirdo Land section will be "very immersive," says park spokesman Tom Haden. Visitors will enter the new land through thick curtains of macrame beeds. Pathways will be made entirely of real hemp, burning incense will waft about in thick, gag-inducing clouds, and all of the new area's ride and shop workers will be required to grow greasy dreadlocks and stop bathing and using deodorant. Gift shops will sell mood rings, healing crystals, and, of course, loads of water bongs ("for use only as humorous gifts," says Haden). Street vendors will hawk tasty fare such as bean sprout and tempeh pizza, wheat grass shakes, and sandwiches made from a new soy and wheat-gluten product called I Can't Believe It's Not Blue Whale Meat!
New attractions are also being built at a rapid pace. First will be the Baghwan Sri Rajneesh Limo Ride, which Haden describes as "a lot like Disney's Superstar Limo, except it doesn't suck. It's a ride that shows important scenes in the life of the Baghwan, and includes great live interaction where passengers have their wallets stolen and then get felt up by perverts covered in latex." There will also be a new ride called Patchouli Armageddon; Haden is tight-lipped about the details of this ride, but does assure ARN&R that "it'll be an assault on all the senses. Well, I guess mainly just the sense of smell, to be honest."
But the crowning achievement of the new land will simply be a clever retheming of the Flying Super Saturator water coaster, now to be called the Magical Surprise Cleansing and Healing Barium Colonic. "This one is pure genius," says Haden. "With the incredible volume and power of the water blasting up at the riders in the form of geysers and water cannons, we realized that if passengers were required to ride naked, they would get an enema whether they want one or not!"
When asked whether this type of themed land would appear to be a better fit for sister park Paramount's Great America, Haden was resolute in his denial. "Certainly not. That park is in California, and those people are already eating soy curd and ritualistically flushing their bowels on a daily basis anyway. This wouldn't take them to a new plane of reality. However, the good people of North...er..." (Here Haden paused to check which section of Carowinds he was standing in.) "...I mean South Carolina...have never seen such wacky s%$#. They're going to fall in love with New Age Hippie Weirdo Land."
Ruben, Cowell to Battle
Paul Ruben, noted coaster "critic" and editor of alleged magazine Park World has agreed to do a celebrity boxing gig with Simon Cowell of American Idol fame. While details are sketchy at the moment, we do have word from excellent sources that that Don King has repeatedly offered to promote the match.
It seems that Cowell dissed Top Thrill Dragster after previewing the ride for an upcoming "AI at the park" Memorial Day special, declaring it "the worst kind of American trash...short in duration and long on hype." Ruben, who declared TTD to be his new number one coaster months before it actually was built, overhearing these remarks, threw down the gauntlet and challenged Cowell to a fight. There was even talk of a wager.
If Cowell wins the fight, Ruben must perform on stage for American Idol, where it is expected that he'll perform his usual gymnastics routine, doing backflips and cartwheels while singing the Cedar Fair anthem and stuffing parks' money into his pockets. If Ruben wins, then Simon must perform "Stan Checketts high-dive", launching himself off the top of TTD into a small wading pool underneath while repeatedly thrashing himself with a bullwhip. Enthusiasts everywhere should be ready for this epic battle of men who love the cameras.
In related news, ARN&R has not been able to confirm that Ruben has any actual comparative basis for reported declarations that TTD is "better than sex." Nor has ARN&R been able to confirm allegations that he was arrested for public indecency in Cedar Point's parking lot attempting to obtain a basis for comparison. More news as we get it. --CJ
Thursday, May 01, 2003
Six Flags Trying to Come Up with Something Else to Blame for Unbelievably Huge Continuing Losses
With the Iraq hostilities fading to nothing and the impact of 9/11 ever further in the past, Six Flags executives are faced with a tough problem: What to blame for their inevitably huge losses?
ARN&R has learned, though intrepid investigative reporting, that Six Flags are continuing a two-day meeting today in a previously undisclosed location – a double-wide next to corporate headquarters in Oklahoma City – to consider the possibilities. And ARN&R was there, hidden in a small closet with the water heater, listening.
"Hey, we could blame the Dixie Chicks!" suggested Gary Story, president and Chief Operating Officer of the company. “People are angry at them, and Dixie sorta rhymes with Six, and…” His voice trailed off.
Del Holland, in from his position running Six Flags Magic Mountain, had a different idea. “How about we blame reality television? Everyone really likes that show where the dudes are all in masks.” When it was pointed out that Paramount had previously blamed low results on a really good run of Rockford Files episodes, Holland agreed that Six Flags likely should not use a similar reason.
The meeting yesterday ended with executives despondent, but determined to work further today to find more options. Suggestions to be considered today include blaming bad photocopiers, an increase in broadband access for enthusiasts resulting in increased masturbation time, and Martha Stewart.
Posted at 8:11 AM | Link |
Tuesday, April 29, 2003
Enthusiasts Traveling Together Don’t Get Along
According to exclusive sources, sometimes sharing a great love of roller coasters isn’t actually enough to maintain a friendship. The evidence of this comes in the form of the current coaster vacation being undertaken by enthusiasts Jeff Harchanko, 21, and Jason Bendler, 25. Despite the fact that the two pals have engaged copiously in witty banter and information sharing for the past four years on rec.roller-coaster, and have met up briefly and had a good time together at two day-long park events before, they ended up attempting to inflict bodily harm upon each other near the end of an extended vacation in Florida and Georgia this Spring.
“I always thought Jason was a cool guy,” said Texas native Harchanko. “He’s one of the most intelligent and amusing contributors on rec.roller-coaster, and we had a nice time at Dolly’s Coasterfestabration and at Lone Star Coasterthon. And his taste in coasters is excellent; his top lists are loaded with Beamers, Intamins, CCI’s, and Schmecks. That’s why I’m so shocked that he’s such a &*$%sucker of a roommate when you have to travel with him.”
Harchanko elaborated. “He’s just frickin’ intolerable. I want to get up early each morning in order to get to the parks when they open, or there’s hardly any point in visiting them. If you don’t sprint to Spiderman or Kraken right away, then you can't cram in one ride before the huge lines settle in. But Jason likes to stay up watching Porn Lite on Skinemax and Blowtime until 4AM every single night, and then he bitches when I try to wake him up, and we always end up getting to parks at about 11AM.”
“The final straw is his bathroom habits,” added Harchanko. “Each time we check into a hotel, he sprints out of the car, runs into the room, and christens the bathroom with one of his turbodumps. I mean, he just obliterates the bathroom, leaving streaks and a putrid stench and using all the damn toilet paper. It makes me physically sick to have to use the facilities after him. Usually I just have to go to the hotel lobby so Jason’s odor doesn’t make me throw up. I am beginning to have suspicions that he was the Coaster Odyssey Bathroom Fiend.”
Bendler had another take on the situation. “I can’t believe this jerk. I have to run to the bathroom all the time because this bitch insists on stopping at Crystal Burger for every meal. Even McDonald’s wouldn’t tear my ass apart like those grimy little things. And it’s no use going to bed early, because he easily breaks 140 decibels when he snores, so I wouldn’t be able to sleep anyway. I mean, for real, it’s like hearing an entire ice flow of walruses copulating, while a jet plane takes off, while a really bad community orchestra trumpet section splats through Fanfare for the Common Man. No joke. And he uses all the towels and splashes water everywhere when he takes a shower. What is he, a little baby?"
For emphasis, Bendler affected a high, screechy whine and squealed, “Wah! Waaaaah! Goo goo gah gah! I’m Joe! I spwash water like a wittle baby! Waaaaah!”
Continuing, Bendler said, “and for goodness sake, he goes to shows. Shows! He’s always got such a bee up his ass about waiting at the gate at 7AM so we can run in, but after two or three coaster rides, he’s always like ‘Dude, can we see the Chinese acrobats? And later we need to see the parade. And there’s this neat musical about American pride at 5PM that we really ought to see.’ What a chump.”
This morning, the pair of enthusiasts ended up rolling on the ground in front of Busch Gardens Tampa’s Gwazi, pulling each other’s hair and attempting to strangle one another. Exhausted after the battle (deemed a draw by observers) and subsequent eviction without refund from the park, Bendler was philosophical. Pausing and furrowing his brow in thought, he observed, “I would have thought that a shared appreciation for the Hulk coaster and abiding hatred for Son of Beast would have assured Joe and me of having a fabulous trip and being best buddies on the road, but I guess that wasn’t the case.”
Posted at 2:52 PM | Link |
Monday, April 28, 2003
ARN&R Weather Update
It was just gorgeous here at ARN&R Towers over the weekend. Naturally, that means we prepared four -- yes, four! -- pieces for your edification since Friday afternoon. So be sure to scroll down to see 'em all. And buy stuff. If you get yourself on any nationally-televised amusement-park-related television show wearing ARN&R stuff, we'll...um. Send you more stuff. Or something.
Six Flags Elitch Gardens Thinks Paying Customers Want to Swim in Garbage
Six Flags Elitch Gardens, the flagship property of the outstanding and beloved chain, recently announced a most unusual activity: Swimming in Dumpsters Filled With Disgusting Waste. The promotional activity, described in great detail at the park’s webpage, was created by SFEG management under the bizarre assumption that park guests would enjoy floundering in half-eaten chilidogs, sticky candy wrappers, rotted lettuce, and vomit.
“We are proud to announce this fabulous Xtreme new activity, which is totally free with paid admission to the park itself,” said park rep Graham Heatherdowns. “We’ll have prizes provided by Coke and the park, including season passes, passes to upcharge attractions, and half-gnawed peach pits, and we toss these things into an unspeakably filthy dumpster that smells like Satan pinched a loaf all over it. We know our patrons will especially enjoy breaststroking through raw tons of foul murk to find these superb prizes. And they might find a chunk of still-edible funnel cake, too!”
Eying a youngster poised uncertainly and reluctantly at the edge of the Swimming in Dumpsters Filled With Disgusting Waste attraction, Heatherdowns yelled out to him angrily, “Get in there you big furry oaf, I don’t care what you smell!”
Sunday, April 27, 2003
Enthusiast Avoids Having Crap Coaster as 200th
It could have been a complete and utter disaster for enthusiast Bubba McGurkas. Turning sheet white and bursting into gallons of flop sweat, according to eyewitnesses, McGurkas realized at nearly the last minute on his spring coaster tour that his 200th coaster would be a piece of crap. Although such a revelation would have felled mere mortals, the intrepid enthusiast found a solution to the dreadful problem: frantically rearrange his life and spend gobs of cash.
“It was my greatest nightmare,” McGurkas later confessed to ARN&R. “I had already experienced the humiliation and shame of accidentally miscounting one year while touring in New England. Instead of getting Boulderdash at number 75, it was actually Zoomerang. And later on, I screwed up and got the stupid Trailblazer instead of Great Bear for number 100. This time, the major round number was going to be a great, memorable ride. Not a pile of s%&$.”
McGurkas was in the midst of a ride on Kennywood’s Jack Rabbit when the terror hit him. “I went to a couple parks in Pennsylvania that I’d never been to before. I had thought adding the new-for-Bubba coasters at Knoebel’s and Kennywood would get me up to 198, then when I went to Six Flags America I’d add the Mind Eraser for 199 since it was closed the last visit, and then I could have Volcano as my big 200 at King’s Dominion. Well, I forgot that I had stopped by Idlewild for a ride on Rollo Coaster. Stupid, stupid, stupid! I thought I was experiencing an impulsive bit of fun on a classic woodie with fixed lap bars, but I was dooming myself and future generations of my family to insufferable torment and hell. Will my future children be taunted because their fool of a father left a ride off the count and ended up counting a Mind Eraser as number 200? A Mind Eraser, for the love of all that is holy? No! No! Nooooooooooooo!”
Then the budding genius hatched a daring and brilliant plan: McGurkas would fly to Texas in order to add coasters worthy of being a nice round number on his count list. “I had some limitations,” said McGurkas. “I live in Iowa, and I’d already booked a flight back from BWI after I got done with PKD and Six Flags. I’ve missed lots of work at Wal-Mart lately to ride coasters, and the boss insisted I’d be fired if I was back a second after I told him I’d be. I had planned in a rest day to visit my brother Randy in Virginia between park visits, which would have been fun since I haven’t seen him in three years. So, I was thinking that, if I told Randy that in order to see me this year he had to come to King’s Dominion with me, and then used the extra day to fly to Texas, I could get some suitable rides in down there, fly back, hit SFA and PKD as planned, and fly home just in time not to be fired!”
At a mere cost of $1007.34 for a last minute cross-country flight from BWI to San Antonio with no Saturday stay-over, $25.49 for rental car, and $6 parking at Fiesta Texas (his Six Flags Northeastern New York pass gained him free admission), McGurkas was able to add several new coasters. Superman Krypton Coaster, a well-regarded B&M Floorless, was his 200th ride.
Raising his hands aloft, McGurkas cried out in a booming voice, “My name is Ozymandias, king of kings: look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”
[Editor’s Note: Unfortunately, this heartwarming tale of warm cuddly sweetness and triumph of the human condition has a tragic ending. It turns out McGurkas completely forgot to list Blackbeard’s Lost Treasure Ride when he rode the kiddie coaster at Six Flags Great Adventure early in his trip. Instead of adding Superman Krypton Coaster as his 200th, the ride in that position was actually the loathsome Boomerang Coast to Coaster.]
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