Fun Carnival Facts

Spinning Around is For LITTLE People

Apparently, when I sit inside a spinning Tilt-A-Whirl-ish sort of contraption, the urge to hurl my stomach contents is much weaker when spinning counter-clockwise.

Quick reference:

  • Clockwise: insides feel like a blender on “puree”, stomach contents churning and preparing to exit via the entry door
  • Counter-clockwise: insides just feel like a blender on “blend”, stomach contents not noticable one way or the other

I discovered this recently at a local carnival. And it was very good news not just for me, but for my two young boys who were sitting in there with me, trying to make it spin faster and faster. Prior to this discovery, I had to put the brakes on a few times; then we switched directions, and behold! No more nausea! Thank God for small miracles. So they were happy that I didn’t have to be such a killjoy any more.

And it was good news for the other patrons on the ride, if you get my drift. Also random passers-by within, say, 12-15 feet of the spinning car.

A curious observer may ask, “so why did you go on the ride in the first place?” Well, trust me, it wasn’t my idea, but there was some question in the operator’s mind whether the young boys would be able to handle the spinning on their own, because the occupants of the car have to run it themselves, by turning a wheel mounted inside the car; sort of like a round table that you grab on the edges, and twirl your car around.

So being a good Dad, of course, I risked blowing chunks all over my kids in order to create lasting memories. And quite a Kodak moment that would have been.

That’s just how I roll.

I also provided a useful lesson in “Alluring Carnival Rip Offs” for my seven year old, who was convinced that he could shoot a basketball into a basket mounted about 6 feet away, and very low. The catch: the backboard tilts backwards; so because you are basically level with it when shooting, you have to gently roll the ball up the backboard. If you can’t, it bounces too hard and won’t go in.

Pretty counter-intuitive. A carny game with an angle! Couldn’t see that coming.

Five bucks, three throws, one rip off. And if you win, you get some lame stuffed animal that will lie forgotten in the corner of some closet within days of its capture.

But, try it we did. He came close. Once.

30 seconds and five dollars later, the carny wants us to try again. Um, no.

Now my son knows the risks of trusting carnival barkers. What he did not know was that I was also nearly out of cash, and wasn’t about to give my last $5 to some carny. Kind of convenient, how that worked out.


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