Along with bags of cotton candy and funnel cakes, much of the carnival midway's appeal is the charmingly low-tech mechanical rides. The Tilt-A-Whirl, Scrambler, Himalaya, Viper, Space Odyssey 2000 and dozens of other just-assembled-last-week rides make the carnival both innocent and dangerous at the same time.
Lately, however, in the new world of extreme thrill rides, even the steepest roller coasters are considered a cake walk when it comes to rides like the Ejection Seat, a reverse bungee ride that launches passengers more than 100 feet into the air at a terrifying speed.
For $23, Wisconsin State Fair-goers can get strapped into an open, sphere-shaped capsule that is connected to two columns via elastic, bungee ropes. The sphere is shot into the air, where it bounces, spins and somersaults, giving riders the ultimate feeling of fear and freedom.
These rides are rumored to cause riders to scream obscenities, puke and even wet themselves (although the author did not experience any of the aforementioned reactions when she braved the ride this weekend). But even worse results have occurred from this ride as well. Last month, at the Christian music festival called LifeFest that's held annually in Oshkosh, a 16-year-old girl was killed on a bungee-type ride.
Would you - - or did you -- ride one of these? Is it worth the risk? Is it worth the money?
No way. There is no point to risking your life on a stupid ride like this. Life is dangerous enough as is, so why would anyone increase their chances of dying for a few seconds of thrill? Plus, the cost is completely outrageous.
It's totally worth it. Like skydiving, riding the Ejection Seat and similar bungee rides is a complete rush and ensues a feeling of empowerment. Life is about facing -- and pushing through -- fears, and in turn enjoying the adrenaline rush and the confidence that follows.
Molly Snyder started writing and publishing her work at the age 10, when her community newspaper printed her poem, "The Unicorn.” Since then, she's expanded beyond the subject of mythical creatures and written in many different mediums but, nearest and dearest to her heart, thousands of articles for OnMilwaukee.
Molly is a regular contributor to FOX6 News and numerous radio stations as well as the co-host of "Dandelions: A Podcast For Women.” She's received five Milwaukee Press Club Awards, served as the Pfister Narrator and is the Wisconsin State Fair’s Celebrity Cream Puff Eating Champion of 2019.