By Martin J. Kidston
From the somersaulting Zipper to spinning Thriller to the topsy-turvy Kamikaze, kids taller than the height ruler displayed their endurance over the weekend at the Great Northern Fair.
Hopping from one ride to the next like flies on fair scones, the riders tolerance never waned and standing in line was little more than a chance to catch their breath and discuss in detail the thrills of the last ride.
Kristi and Kali Owens and Craig Kallenberger teamed up to tackle the bevy of thrills. Having purchased their pass for unlimited rides, they eagerly passed the dunking booth, the big slide and the robo-boxer for the Kamikaze.
With only half a crew on board, the Kamikaze gained speed like the Sopwith Camel to fly into the sun, sputter and fall back to the earth while its occupants let out a scream. Getting off, their hair took the worst of it and their smiles were wide.
It feels like your falling, said Kristi.
Her sister agreed with a giggle.
It was fun. Kali said.
It wasnt that scary, Craig replied, pushing his hands into his pockets. It was awesome.
The Thriller was next, and unlike the Kamikaze, it never placed its riders in the inverted position. However, it did inflict some equally cruel effects, to which the three amigos could testify after the ride.
It almost made me sick, Kristi said.
Im dizzy, Craig replied.
When asked if it was better than the Kamikaze, Kaci said it wasnt even close.
It wasnt better, she said.
Every ride thereafter had a term of its own, from awesome to wicked to just plain cool. Some riders even used a combination of the three to express what a single verb could not.
Pretty cool, and fun, said Jared Weigel coming off the Big Slide.
Cool, his sidekick Jake Myers said.
For the those eating instead of riding, the language was the same. Just ask Sarah Loftus, who sat in the shade of the food stand munching a cotton candy.
How is that?
Good, she said.
What flavor is it?
Blueberry, she said.
Others, not yet affected by the carnival, managed a little more detail in describing the impending sensations. Stepping away from the ticket booth with unlimited passes on their wrists, Thora Christopherson and Kim Moorman headed for something in particular, where undoubtedly they would be reduced to the language of the fair.
What are your plans?
Go on the Zipper and hang out with friends, Thora said. And eat junk food.
And play games, Kim added.
No doubt, it was awesome.