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chasing answers newsletter #67
I'm back, A trip to the fair
“Go to a county fair, eat a bunch of fried Oreos, and then ride sketchy carnival rides until sick.” - Unknown
I’m back, baby!!!
In case you didn’t notice (and you probably didn’t), I missed sending out my newsletter last week. And the week before.
That’s the first time I’ve missed in ten months, and I didn’t half-ass it. I missed two in a row. I didn’t set out to miss two, or even one, for that matter. It just happened. The first week, I completely forgot that I wrote a newsletter. We were getting ready to head out on a family vacation (one that I was particularly excited about), and I completely blanked on the fact that I hadn’t written anything that week. We were halfway to our destination on Saturday when it hit me. I was up early Sunday morning before everyone else, so technically, I had time to put something together but decided not to.
And it felt kind of good.
The following week, we had just returned from our vacation, and it was the same scenario. I could have thrown something together, but decided to roll with the non-publishing vibes for an extra week.
I know it’s the “in” thing to take a sabbatical from work to write, but I took a mini-sabbatical from writing to work and do other things. I have to say, I get why they’re so popular.
That brings us to now, and I’ll be the first to admit that I’m on the struggle bus this week, trying to get back in the groove of writing and publishing.
So, I’m going to give this my best “guy returning from a sabbatical, but still unsure if he should be” try.
Here we go.
A Trip to the Fair
Summer’s officially over in my book. I know that because my daughter’s back in school, we made our annual trip to the county fair this weekend, and I’ve been scarfing down as much fresh sweet corn as possible. All the usual signs that we’ve moved on to a new season, even if the calendar says otherwise.
Speaking of the calendar, our little venture to the county fair made it evident that the pages of that thing keep getting ripped off, and I’m not getting any younger.
My daughter was big enough to ride some of the larger rides this year, which we were both pumped for. I hadn't been on any really good rides since my daughter was born, and that type of thing is usually my jam. The higher, the faster, the better. I’ve done all of the standard thrill-seeking activities: bungee jumping, skydiving, etc., so I really didn’t think there would be anything at the fair that would bring my stomach to the top of my throat.
I was wrong.
Some of these rides were no joke. I honestly couldn’t believe they let my daughter on them. I was so goddamn dizzy after one of them I had to hold the railing so I didn’t fall on my ass getting off the thing. "What's wrong, Dad? That wasn't even that fast," my daughter said as we made our way to the next ride. "Right," I thought to myself, "not that fast."
Is this what getting old is like? Because, if so, it sucks. I’ve heard other people talk about being unable to do these types of things as they get older because they get too dizzy, experience vertigo, or their stomachs can’t take it anymore, but I didn’t think I would ever get to that point.
I always assumed that as my daughter got older, we would be the perfect duo for tackling any amusement park's biggest and scariest attractions. My wife isn’t big on thrill rides, and my daughter has no limits when it comes to this stuff, so I figured this would always be something we would share. But after this weekend, I’m questioning how many more years I will qualify before she kicks me off the team for someone else.
Don’t get me wrong, despite feeling the effects of these rides more than I ever have, we had a blast together, and I enjoyed every bit of it.
Until the Monkey Maze.
The Monkey Maze was your typical funhouse-type attraction. My daughter loved it, and we must have gone through it twenty times. (By the way, when you go to the fair, always buy the ride band. It seems expensive at first, but when your daughter decides to do the same attraction twenty times, it pays for itself.)
This particular funhouse had one of those long tubes that spins as you try to run through it. My daughter thought it was awesome, so she would get in it and just stay there running in place forever. I would have to make her get out when other kids would start to get backed up behind her.
Over and over, we did this.
And then disaster struck.
My daughter’s shoe fell off while she was inside the tube. As she bent down to pick it up, she lost her balance and went down. She was now rolling around inside the tube, yelling for me to help in the most panicked voice I have ever heard from her.
I was already out of the tube, so I jumped back in. I bent down and attempted to grab her with one hand and her shoe with the other. Except I lost my balance and failed to grab either. Now I was rolling around this tube, like Humpty Dumpty on a human-sized hamster wheel. She was starting to panic more, and I managed to help her out of the tube (if you call pushing her in the ass with my foot as I tumbled head over heels helping her out.)
I still consider myself to be a pretty athletic guy, but for the life of me, I couldn’t get my damn feet under me, so I was trying to crawl towards the end of the tube as if I was a college kid the morning after a keg party doing my damnedest to get to the toilet.
By now, a group of nine-year-olds had gathered at the entrance and were waiting to get in, but they were hesitating because they were watching this grown man get tossed around like a rag doll inside a washing machine.
I could hear them laughing, and I’d be lying if I said at that moment, I wasn’t thinking about crawling back to the beginning of the tube and dragging their little asses in there with me. I was also having visions of myself being the next viral video on TikTok.
I finally made it out with my daughter’s shoe. However, instead of being relieved that I was still alive or ecstatic that I was able to return her shoe to her, she seemed more mortified that her Dad had just become that night’s comedic entertainment for this particular group of kids.
She grabbed her shoe, turned around, and walked away from me. As I got to my feet, I heard one of the kids who had just entered the tunnel say, “How could anyone fall down in here? It’s not even that fast.”
Photo(s) of the Week
I hope you all have a great week!
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