July 05, 2007

4th of July Extravaganza

'tis the season for exciting goings-on at Riverfront Park and the Carousel. Yesterday, as you may or may not have realized, was the 4th of July, which of course brought patriotic Americans out en mass. Lucky for me, the social hotspot of the day was also where I happen to work, so I got to play Mr. Tough-Guy security important dude. Here’s the skinny on what went down.

I got to work at about 2:00 PM and quickly realized that this was all a very big deal. At one end of the park were giant inflatable toys. I would have definitely played on them, but I was dressed nicely and not 8 years old. They did look like quite a bit of fun though!



The one in the picture is the sinking Titanic. Crawl through the iceberg, through the smoke stacks that have fallen off the ship, up the ship, and slide down, only to freeze to death and sink in front of your girlfriend (ok, not that last part). As you can see, there’s a rock climbing wall behind the Titanic toy. There was also a neat jumping thing that the little kids were having fun on.



You get strapped into a bungee cord harness and jump up and down on the trampoline, allowing you to pretend you’re Neo and do all sorts of flips and Matrix-y moves.



Here’s the rock climbing wall again, and in the distance is some kind of inflatable rat-race game.

The next thing I noticed when I got to work was the food. Of course there was food! It’s all expensive, but hey, food is food. Check out the line of deep-fried purveyors.



Now, I realize at this point that the park looks pretty empty and kind of boring. That’s because it was. No matter, as you’ll see in a bit, it got a bit more crowded. Next thing on the park sight-seeing tour was the Cruise-In. Now, I know nothing about cars, so I just took pictures of the ones I thought looked cool. I’m told that there was a ’55 wagon there, which means nothing to me, but if there are some car buffs out there reading this yelling at me right now, I’m sorry that I got to see it instead of you. Here are some of the cars.







The grass is still kind of dead from all the World Beat booths, but normally the park has really nice green grass. After checking out the cars I headed into work to begin my turn spinning horses. Oh, wait, did I mention that I saw this in the park too?



Woo-hoo! Human Cannonball! More about that later though.

I keep promising that I’ll talk about my job at the Carousel, so I’ll go over it a bit now. I work at a Carousel. See?





This is me at the control box, taking pictures of myself, because I was bored.



Ok, that’s about all the explaining I’m going to do. I know, pathetic, but I just can’t get up the effort to describe the Carousel in detail, so I won’t today. Remember how I said that since I work at the Carousel and go to all these events I get the special shirts and stuff? Yesterday instead of shirts they had badges for the special people. Here’s mine.



Yep, VIP, that’s me. Alright, time to talk about the human cannonball.



The lady that launches herself out of the cannon is actually from a family of cannonballs. Her dad holds the record for the longest flight and her 4 brothers and sisters all shoot from cannons too. She flew 125 feet from the cannon into the net. Luckily, I escaped from work in order to document her flight. Here’s the video:



Pretty sweet, eh? I got another picture of her later in the evening. The original picture looks something like this:



But after some cropping and zooming, you end up with this:



I was really excited when I saw how that picture turned out! I love my camera, 6mp for only $100.

Alright, so, the day progressed and eventually turned into night. I told you, the park got more crowded, here’s proof:





Oh, I forgot to mention that there was a band playing all day. They were playing on the patio of the Carousel, so again, exclusive access for Michael.



The evening finished up with fireworks, which I won’t show here because Oregon fireworks are lame and you all know what fireworks look like anyway!

So, you would think that that concluded my day, but oh no, there was more to be done. It was time to clean the bathrooms! Cleaning bathrooms, honestly, is not that bad. We clean them every hour throughout the day so they stay pretty well kept, but yesterday was an exception. The guys, I have to hand it to them, kept the bathroom really clean. The women, well, GOOD GOD! Honestly, you’d have to try to make the bathroom as bad as it was. I think they made a conscious effort to destroy it. I took some pictures. Keep in mind, the bathroom was spotless an hour before these pictures were taken, look what they managed to do in an hour!





There was paper everywhere, a pair of flip-flops sitting against the wall, and a beer bottle hidden behind one of the toilets. Also, in the span of an hour, they had used almost every single roll of toilet paper. They’re animals! I just don’t understand!

I finally left work at about 12:30 am on July 5th and got to bed at about 1:00 am. I was up by 5:30 am today and am running off caffeine and sugar. I’m gonna crash tonight, I guarantee, but that’s ok, because sleep is good. I hope you enjoyed hearing about my exciting fourth of July, it was quite an adventure. AND! . . . I didn’t get attacked by a bird!

3 comments:

Edgar said...

This is a really great blog! I wish we had those type of celebrations where I live, at least we sadly don't have the best part; people being shot by a cannon at a distance of about 100 meters!

José P. said...

You're lucky you are not cleaning up bathrooms in Puerto Rico. Here, you can find human feces in just about everything, except the toilet.

(Well, every once in a while, a lucky fellow hits the mark, but forgets to flush.)

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