The Stereotypical Amusement Park

Now that summer is almost over and I was able to use my Virginia resident’s Fun Card at Busch Gardens several times this year (that’s right, if you live here, you can go all summer for the price of a single day) I think it’s time to stereotype the people I saw wandering around staring at maps.

The Souvenir King. I don’t feel sorry for the guy who has to carry around that giant, purple stuffed monkey that he got for free after spending $45 flopping rubber frogs. At least he has a giant foam cowboy hat to protect it from the sun.

The Get-a-Room Couple. I’m not offended by a little PDA, but why am I always in line behind a couple that is in the third period of a tonsil hockey match and showing every sign of taking the game into overtime? And for some reason, the guy who coughs to get their attention when the line moved after the last hip check is the rude one. We need a penalty box for illegal use of the hands.

The Recently Gouged. “There is no way I’m spending $4 for a Coke I could buy at Food Lion for a dollar!” says the guy who paid $60 to get in. Yeah, the prices are ridiculous and I avoid spending money in the park, too, but are you really surprised anymore?

The Home School Family. No price complaining here–they have their secret stash of fruit snacks in the strollers and know that every park concession stand is required to give you ice water if you ask for it.

Vlad the Impatient. It cracks me up that some people spend more time looking for the ride with the shortest line than I do actually in line. The only thing worse is the guy in line who is angry that so many people are here on a sunny Saturday in the summer.

Roller Coaster Tycoon. He knows everything about every ride. Height? to the inch. Speed? in British and metric. G-Forces? he will compare them to the NASA standards and then to every other ride in the continental U.S. because he’s been on them all.

Matching Group. They could be on a field trip, in town for a family reunion, or just have a weird sense of humor, but you always end up asking the same question, “How many of those kids in the sparkly, yellow t-shirts are going to throw up on the skylift today?”

Unofficial Tour Guide. Try this. Elbow your friend and say “check that out” as you pass by an interesting exhibit, building, booth, or attraction and he will appear. He’s usually posing as an interested bystander, but the instant you make eye-contact, you will know everything you don’t care to hear about that feature of the park. “It’s called a _________ and was constructed to mimic the _______ in ________. The _________ are all original and were shipped in from ________…”

Scooter People. I have no problem with the grandma who needs a scooter to keep up with the younger generation or the kid who recently had surgery on his broken femur zipping through the crowds. It’s the guy I patiently let go by who parks at the entrance of the ride and jumps over the rail to catch up with the rest of his group that gets on my nerves. He’s closely followed by the 450-pound lady on a scooter who can’t take the time to look up from her funnel cake to avoid turning small children into splotches eerily similar to the strawberry sauce dripping onto her sparkly, yellow t-shirt.

I’m sure I missed a few so feel free to add yours in the comments.


About Jeff Postlewaite

high school principal since '07, father since '04, teacher since '03, husband since '03, sound tech since '96, UVA fan since '92, gadget junkie since '89, Christian since '88, Giants fan since '84, golfer since '83, brother since '83, human since '81

Posted on August 23, 2011, in Diversions and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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