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Saturday, July 31, 2004
Internet Expert Demands: Top Thrill Dragster, Taer It Down!
An emergency executive meeting was called Friday afternoon by Cedar Fair's CEO Dick Kinzel to address the future of Top Thrill Dragster at Cedar Point. ARN&R has learned that the sporadically running ride may be "reimagined" and may not open again as a roller coaster.
In its two seasons at Cedar Point, TTD has been a great success with the majority of the park's guests. "The general public doesn't seem to mind the frequent downtime of TTD. Heck, I've seen families that waited three hours to ride go right on over to a two-hour line Millennium Force without blinking an eye when told the ride will be down for the rest of the day. Regular folks from around these parts understand bad things just kind of happen," said a Cedar Point spokesman.
Coaster enthusiasts, it seems, are a bit harder to please. Over the years, Cedar Point has endured neverending accusations and rumors thrown about by their so-called biggest fans. Usually contained to junior high schools and internet postings, the latest message was delivered straight to the park. Found last week by a four year old in Camp Snoopy, it was made with letters cut from the latest ACE News pasted onto bright red construction paper. It contained just one demand "TAeR DOwn top ThriLL DragStER." It was not clear if the glued on glitter and Cheerios had been added by the child or were part of the original message.
ARN&R has learned that the hard copy of the message was merely a way to deliver the more forceful message found online:
Dismantle Top Thrill Dragster
Those chilling words were the centerpiece of a statement posted on rec.roller-coaster, a known haven for subversive coaster fans, all of whom have enormous expertise in the cost-benefit ratio of maintaining a coaster in its current status.
When asked if the company was taking the posting seriously Kinzel replied, "Goodness yes! How could you not? Someone takes the time to put extra space between words like that, you have to take notice."
Park security (aided by longtime Peanuts favorite Woodstock) is looking into the background of an underground group of rogue yet incredibly intelligent enthusiasts whose leader is known by the codename "ChrisCoaster." The notoriously secretive ChrisCoaster later added, "I will repeat: Dismantle Top Thrill Dragster or use the tallest part of it as an observation tower/restaurant. I for one wouldn't mind dining 40 stories above Lake Erie."
"That's a hell of an idea," said Kinzel in an exclusive ARN&R interview. "Sure, it'd be a little tricky to explain to our investors why we have a $25-plus million restaurant. On the other hand, this guy has visited our park twice in the last four years. Such a huge supporter of the park, with his extensive opportunities to review the engineering specifications, remedial plans, and all other technical information about the coaster obviously knows more about what is really going on than we do."
This same group is believed to be behind the removal of a coaster at another Cedar Fair property in 2003. Dorney Park's Hercules wooden roller coaster was shut down just before the end of the season without notice and dismantled soon after. It is thought that the pieces of Hercules given to attendees of this years Eastcoaster luncheon was to finally prove all the group's demands had been met, hoping that the group would then cease wielding its enormous power to intimidate the park chain.
Thursday, July 29, 2004
Six Flags New England Improves Customer Service
According to recent visitors, Six Flags New England has made major efforts to improve what many felt was a park with terrible customer servive, infrastructure, and cleanliness. This season, several Six Flags parks announced intentions to make their parks cleaner and prettier and focus on guest relations improvements instead of adding large new rides. Amongst them, to the happy squeals of many, was SFNE.
Although sources tell ARN&R that the park still runs one train on everything, assigns seats on some coasters, keeps as surly and poorly-trained a staff as possible, charges obscene amounts for parking and food, and maintains its legendary three-foot film of raw human excrement on all bathroom floors and some paths, it nonetheless has made major strides in bettering itself. Indeed, the park's copiously overflowing urinals all now feature two -count them, two!- sweet-smelling urinal cakes.
"We always used to keep just one urinal cake in each toilet," says an anonymous SFNE employee. "We figured, why bother with more when the toilets all actively erupt like Yellowstone geysers every few minutes, and our clientele is of such low grade that they'll piss and crap all over the floor and sinks, anyway. But it really makes a difference with the two cakes, I have to say. It used to smell like shit and urine, and now it smells like shit, urine, and brain-damaging toxic industrial chemicals!"
According to the employee, in addition to the miraculous improvement of adding extra urinal cakes to its toilets, Six Flags New England also made the major guest relations enhancement of tuning the beat-up piano at the entrance of Houdini's Escape.
Wednesday, July 28, 2004
National Millennium Force Publicly-Not-Fitting-in-Seat Nightmare Over
It's a beautiful day. You just shelled out a ton of money to park at Cedar Point, enter Cedar Point, and buy lots of crap with Cedar Point logos on it. You've been waiting in line for three hours to ride Millennium Force. You've already made your own succulent gravy by stewing in the sun, your ears are numb from the booty music being blasted at you by the stupid line DJ, and your nerves are frazzled from pointing out dozens of inaccuracies in what the people around you are saying about roller coaster lift hill heights. But sweet relief appears in front of you, as you approach the gate for the front seat. That blessed, spectacular, and pant-creaming ride on MF looms seconds away. Eagerly you board the train.
And then, it happens. You squirm, you struggle, you suck in that gut, you lop off body parts with that machete, but to no avail. You simply won't fit in that Millennium Force car, with its damn new short seatbelt!
If this scenario causes you to awake late at night, sweating and screaming and shaking, then we have just the website for you. Our Site O' the Weak, MF Test Seat Guide: Can You Fit? provides the valuable service of explaining, with helpful pictures and text, how to test yourself at home to see whether you fit in the MF seats, sparing you the mortal shame of being kicked off of this coaster in front of thousands because you can't squeeze in.
More importantly, there are crotch shots for your viewing pleasure.
Despite repeated requests, we have been unable to ascertain whether, in the near future, any coaster enthusiasts will be developing any home practice products for the following: pulling their shorts halfway up their chest, wearing black socks and flip-flops together, chanting "one more time, one more time" at ride ops at higher volume, giving random uninterested strangers lectures on coaster manufacturers and brake types, or failing to get dates.
Moonshine in Alabama
Note: Sometimes ARN&R is accused of making up stories. To prove that the truth is more frightening than fiction we have conducted confidential interviews to bring you this disgusting deed, perpetrated by one of ACE’s highest-ranking members (no, not that one). Some names have been changed to protect the scarred.
It was a hot day, the kind Alabama was known for in June. The place was Bessemer, Alabama, home of Visionland Amusement Park and nothing else. Back amongst the trees sat a large wooden monster called Rampage that enthusiasts were enjoying. But, these purveyors of coaster nonsense weren’t just having a day at the park, they were there for the annual event entitled Rip Roarin’ Rampage.
One enthusiast, whom we’ll call Tim, chatted with a friend, whom we’ll call Frank, in line. They agreed the coaster had run great all day and was only getting better.
“It was a typical day at Visionland,” said Tim. “Good rides on Rampage, a dirty amusement park and a small crowd with ten teeth among them.”
Frank chimed in, “I remember our rides on Rampage like it was yesterday. We queued for the back seat and noticed a badly dressed Coaster Tool in front of us. However, with this being an ACE event that was commonplace throughout the day.”
The sun beat down as the pair climbed into the PTC train. The seat belts were hot to the touch as Frank and Tim buckled in and lowered their lap bars. Then, it happened.
Tim said, “I looked up and saw an ACE member trying to stand up from the train. Of course it was a bit funny that he was too large to get out of the coaster train comfortably. But then my jaw dropped.”
Standing in front of the pair was a rather large ACE member that was more than just “a little large.” This gentleman stood up and featured so much girth that his pants and underwear stayed below in the seat because they got stuck. Read that line again and let the thought of a large, pale, pimple-ridden white ass really sink in.
Shortly-thereafter Frank looked up and felt that he was staring at a car wreck. He said, “It was one of the most disgusting things I have ever seen, but I just couldn’t look away. All I could feel was my retinas burning.”
The aloof enthusiast tried to pull his pants up, but the damage had been done. Other enthusiasts, yokels and locals had all seen our fearless leader put his pasty cheeks in front of everyone.
While disgusting, we at ARN&R felt we had to share this story. Hopefully it makes you realize that if all we did was tell the truth about enthusiasts this medium would be decidedly negative.
Tuesday, July 27, 2004
Retirement of Ricky Williams Leaves Six Flags in Shock
The recent retirement of Miami Dolphins running back Ricky Williams, after only five seasons in the National Football League and just days before the opening of his team's training camp, came as a huge surprise. It surprised the Miami Dolphins, whose hopes for the playoffs have all but vanished. It surprised the NFL, which certainly enjoys marketing every major star it can. It surprised about seven really naive people who never leave their houses that Williams hit the bong about seventy times a day and mentioned this as part of his individuality that football was crushing.
But it surprised Six Flags, Inc. the most. Many people did not realize that the park chain giant held the exclusive rights to create park rides, attractions, and related merchandise themed to the All-Pro back.
"This may be the final nail in our coffin," announced Six Flags rep Ralph Waldo Blurpfer IV. "It's not like we haven't had enough financial trouble as it is lately. But we figured Ricky was a sure bet. Who wouldn't have traveled across the world to experience a simulator or kiddie coaster or food item themed to an eccentric running back who took eighty percent of his team's carries the previous year?"
Blurpfer noted that Williams had received "gargantua" sums of money from Six Flags in exchange for the rights to use his likeness in any attractions or soft ice cream flavors at the chain's parks. Blurpfer admitted that it was still possible the park would create new gigacoasters and stuffed koala bears themed to Williams, but it seemed more likely they would have to cancel anything that would have been Williams-themed, resulting in a huge financial hit, but not sinking the corporation even further into debt by creating attractions the public no longer wanted.
Blurpfer did note (off the record, naturally) that Six Flags, Inc., was also considering retheming the entire Williams entertainment package to widely-respected and dominant Ravens quarterback Kordell Stewart.
Sunday, July 25, 2004
Enthusiasts Lost in Canada Feared Deranged Hillbillies
According to a pair of coaster enthusiasts, Gabe Pappas and Darnell Cleaver, getting lost on a small Canadian road late at night was somewhat scary. The time of apprehension for the pair occurred while they were traveling between La Ronde and Paramount’s Canada’s Wonderland, and were forced to detour onto small roads when the 401 was shut down due to a massive accident.
“We were really having a good time during our Canadian trip until then,” said Pappas. “People were friendly, the cities were clean, we were able to feast upon mounds of poutine and suckle maple directly out of the trees, and pretty much nobody liked George W. Bush. But then we hit that monster traffic problem, diverted into the wilderness, and couldn’t find our way back to the highway until about three in the morning. Let me tell you, your mind starts racing in situations like that.”
Specifically, the pair became convinced that wild, scary, Deliverance-style inbred hicks would certainly descend upon them and commit violations to their buttocks.
“We were on this one particularly deserted stretch of country road,” said Cleaver. “I was absolutely positive that some rednecks were going to jump out and tell us to ‘squeal like a pig, eh?’”
“Or, depending whether we were still in Quebec at that point, the rednecks might have leered at us, pointed their bows and arrows at us, and told us something like 'vous avez une belle bouche, garçon' instead,” said Pappas. “Either way, it would have been pretty awful.”
The two enthusiasts did note that no incidents involving deranged, inbred crackers ended up occurring on the trip, and the pair arrived at their hotel late, but with their sphincters unviolated.
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