Confronting the BEHEMOTH!
The Behemoth at Wonderland is the parks newest and biggest rollercoaster and my wife has been determined to get on this thing since we first saw it from the 400 Highway. The Behemoth (which incidentally is a Hebrew word for a gigantic beast) is the biggest roller coaster in Canada and it cost only $26 million dollars! It really seems to take up the entire length of one side of the park and it is stomach churning to look at while you’re waiting in line.
We went with my brother and his daughter – my niece. He forbade her from going on this ride. The other coasters were okay but not this one. I don’t know why because the old Wild Beast coaster seems pretty rickety to me. As we walked towards Behemoth I was surprised that the music I was hearing was Don Henley’s Dirty Laundry and Kiss On My List by Hall and Oates. When is the last time they changed the music at Wonderland? Have they ever changed it? I mean don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to hear The Jonas Brothers but could we at least play music from the 90s?
Also, Paramount has sold this park so all of the new rides that were named after movies had to be renamed. For instance, the crappy Lara Croft ride is now called Time Warp. Yeah that makes sense, because after waiting for half an hour for that ride I wanted to go back in time and not go on the ride at all.
As waited in line for the Behemoth I began to realize that I was truly terrified. What was I doing? Do I want to die? I studied the first drop of the ride and counted that it was three seconds. I would have to remember that when going down. I also studied the faces of people as they were coming off the ride. Mostly everyone seemed calm except for one kid who looked at us and mouthed the words: “Don’t Go ON IT!”
It was not a long wait, thank God because I couldn’t stand thinking about what I was doing for much longer. As we got to the front of the line I noticed that there is only one device holding you in to the seat and it goes between your legs and holds your crotch down. Nothing on the shoulders? And no other reinforcements? My stomach churned again. The ride itself does not have a fence so on the sides there is just nothing.
Suddenly we were being pulled to the top. Of course this is the longest and in some ways scariest part of the ride. I had heard that you can see all of Barrie when you get to the top so I just looked down and lived in denial of how high up we were. When we got to the top it sped up a bit and I felt myself coming out of the seat, and then suddenly we were rushing down. I counted to three. The longest three seconds of my life as time slowed down …ONE………………….TWOOOO……………….THREEEEEEEEEEE!
Suddenly we were whooshing back up another hump. I didn’t take this into account in my three second theory. THERE’S MORE! This time, at the top of the next hump, I really felt my body come up off the seat with only the crotch guard holding me in from a certain death. WHAT IF THIS CROTCH THING DOESN’T WORK!? THEN I AM JUST DEAD! And suddenly we were down again and going up another hump.
I held on to the crotch guard with my hands, but because I had oiled them up with suntan lotion I was convinced that if it came to a situation where I needed my hands to hold onto this thing they would just slip out! I DIDN’T THINK THIS THROUGH!!!! WHYYYYYYYY???????!!!!!!
WHOOOSSSH! We were up at the top again with me coming out of my seat and holding on with my slippery hands! Suddenly my wife yells “DOES IT EVER END??!!!!!”
After the fourth hump it becomes a semi-normal roller coaster again with some twists and turns. And by the time we pulled into the exit we were calmer but still excited.
I’m not sure why we do this to ourselves. Do we not face death constantly in our lives, even by driving on the 400 to get to this park? So why put yourself into this insane situation? My father, who is an engineer, won’t get on one of these things. Does he know something we don’t? Don’t all people make mistakes and so what happens if that thing that is holding you down doesn’t work one day? Yikes!
But as my wife says, that is the psychological terror of it. Overall I think it is good to face your fears. Although in the past few years I have become somewhat fearless and I am already planning to get on the Behemoth again. Maybe to feel really alive you have to face death.
Deep thoughts with Suga Jam.