Must Be This Small To Ride

Here is another post that exposes something I previously hid from people.

This past April my family went to Disney World.  I was beyond excited to take my kids to such a magical place.  My wife and I really wanted to check out Harry Potter World at Universal as well.  But I had a fear deep down inside of me that I did not let anyone know about.

It was a fear rooted in a previous experience.

About 7 or 8 years ago I was a chaperone on a trip where we took a bunch of kids to Six Flags Over Georgia.  I was pretty excited because I LOVE roller coasters.  I had not been to an amusement park for several years.  I waited in line with two other chaperones for some big new roller coaster ride.  When we got to the front of the line, it happened.  I sat down in the chair. The guy came over. He pulled the bar down over me. It wouldn’t lock. He pushed harder (to my discomfort mind you). It would not lock. One of the other chaperones said, “Suck it in Hank!” The operator told me to bounce because I wasn’t going to fit and I was holding up the line. I was beyond embarrassed. I haven’t ridden a roller coaster since.

The thought of Disney and Harry Potter World was awesome.  The thought of being denied because of my size scared the excrement out of me though.  I didn’t tell my wife I was worried about it. I did, however, check out the internet to find out what rides were blocking the fattys. Obesity has become such a problem in the States now that amusement parks have actually put “test” seats outside of the rides to give you a chance to see if you fit and save you the embarrassment of being denied at the front of the line.   This is what the interweb told me. I found several websites that where people talked about testing the seats and not fitting. A lot of those people were smaller than I am. That made me realize I was not going to be able to ride a lot of the rides. I tried to avoid those rides while at the parks.  I came up with all sorts of excuses for my wife and her sister as to why I didn’t want to ride the Harry Potter Hogwarts Experience (or whatever it’s called) or the Yeti ride at Animal Kingdom.

At one point in the week, my sister, who was not there, texted me and asked me how I liked the Hogwarts ride at Harry Potter World.  I didn’t respond.  Then when we got back home she asked me again.  Luckily I did not lie and say, “Great!” (she specifically wanted to know what I thought about one part that involved large spider which I hate) I told her I didn’t ride it and she asked me why but I just sort of changed the subject.  I had no intention of telling her that I did not ride it because I couldn’t fit in the seat. She will know now.

Well…there it is. It makes me sick to tell you this because I have become really good at hiding these types of things. I don’like people knowing these types of things about me. But I am sick of hiding.  I want to put it out there so I can conquer and overcome it.  I want to take my kids back to Disney and Universal and I want to ride that damn Harry Potter Hogwarts ride.


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