Park of the Week: Islands of Adventure

We're All Stuck on the World's Worst Roller Coaster Ride

July 6, 2020, 12:00 AM · Well, this is uncomfortable. But I suppose someone was bound to do it.

It's probably hard for a theme park fans to look at the Covid-19 case graphs that we've seen for so many states and countries and not see a roller coaster track in those data lines. You start at ground level, then ride a big hill up to a drop on the other side.

So it was inevitable that someone would feed that data in roller coaster simulation game to let us see what those data curves would feel like as a virtual roller coaster ride. Cue up the TikTok.


Presented by Snickers. You’re not you when you’re hungry. ##fyp ##corona ##covid ##usa ##rollercoaster

? Rating - astapasta3

The descriptions cut deep.

China: 7/10
- Super wacky build up
- Really Fast
- NICE drop!

Italy: 9/10
- Unpredictable Build Up
- Less scary drop
- Cool and wiggly

USA: 1/10
- Fastest of the bunch!
- Ridiculously tall ppl love that
- Help! How do we get down?

How do we get down, indeed? Over the weekend, Florida set the all-time one-day record for most positive tests in a state, beating New York's record. As the heat goes up and more people seek relief in crowded indoor spaces, cases are rising across the south and west, where the weather's the hottest right now. (Northern, mountain and Midwest states - you're up in the fall, when the weather cools and you head inside.)

Turning the pandemic into the world's worst roller coaster ride might seem irreverent - 'cause it is - but if this is the stuff you need to see to put on a mask so that we can all get off this thing, well, here ya go.

0/10. Would not ride again.

Replies (12)

July 6, 2020 at 9:07 AM

According to some stats I found online, the U.S. grossed $214 billion from tourism last year alone, a figure which is far, far ahead of any other country. So when is the U.S. going to get its act together, so that we (I'm Canadian) can come visit again, and resume spending money in your country?

July 6, 2020 at 10:01 AM

In my e-mail inbox, the topic of the e-mail read: Stuck on the World's Worst Ride. So I had assumed this was an article on the harrowing tale of one theme park goer's experience with a party bus malfunction on "Fast and Furious: Supercharged".

July 6, 2020 at 10:15 AM

Not sure they will “Still a fan”, chatter is the White House is pivoting to “we’ll just have to live with it”, which means those of us outside the US can expect travel to the US to be impractical for many, many months, as our governments won’t want the disease in.

July 7, 2020 at 10:55 AM

Guess this would be a good time to do that once in a livetime long trip to South Korea or Japan. You´ll have to do the quaranteen for 14 days (at least in South Korea for sure, guessing the same in Japan, then it shoud be more relaxed than at home for most of us.
[edit: i guessed wrong, the data already didn´t agree anymore regarding Japan when i wrote this]

July 6, 2020 at 11:57 AM

And Florida counties now going back to closing down indoor dining and other places shut too which is a blow to an already shaky economy.

Just amazing how I read on states exploding while in my state, cases over weekend were just a few hundred a day, Navy Pier had folks walking about and my local library reopening today. I feel sorry for folks stuck in this mess.

July 6, 2020 at 12:02 PM

Sadly we won't be making our yearly trip to Orlando as well. We do have annual passes to Universal and are considering the option of letting them lapse until such time as the borders open and we feel safe enough to travel. With the latest surge in cases in the States, I wonder if it will even be safe for another year.

Thankfully in Canada most provinces are seeing Covid occurrences stabilizing. They are only now starting to open up travel within provinces and that really depends on where you live. We have also been given the okay by the EU to travel there.

I read somewhere that in 2016 Canadians spend $19.4 billion USD on their visits to the US. So even though we love visiting you guys and your wonderful parks, I would hedge a guess that much of the Canadian tourist dollars will be spent locally, elsewhere or not at all this year.

July 6, 2020 at 2:58 PM

I echo Karen G's comment we've already cancelled our annual trip to Orlando and are now planning to visit Canada instead. Even if the borders re-opened which I'm glad it hasn't we wouldn't go this year. Were thinking of finally visiting Newfoundland since it's always been such an expensive flight from Alberta but now prices have gone way down and there's very few cases there.

Hopefully things get better soon for you in the states so that we can visit next year but if not will be visiting Europe instead! Maybe will finally go to Universal Studios Japan!

July 6, 2020 at 3:22 PM

Francis 24 you will love Newfoundland. We visited there last year and it is an absolutely gorgeous province!

Japan has always been on my wish list. I agree that this may be the time to visit Japan and the Universal Studios there!

July 6, 2020 at 10:26 PM

Parks here in Orlando aren't even thinking about international tourism for this year. Their focus right now is on re-opening with maximum safety and minimal operating cost, trying to cover the wound and stop the bleeding, pretty much everything else has been put on the backburner. Everyone I know at Disney and Universal are considering 2020 a write off.

Also i'd like to shed some light to all the above posters on why we are having such an issue with this in the USA. We are great at a lot of things: innovation, hard work, optimism, and of course making (and spending) money. These are the reasons we have such an astronomically high GDP compared to every other country and Americans take pride in what we are good at. I know a lot of international visitors get weirded out when they visit and see American flags flying all over the place including on the front of peoples homes: we view it as something akin to going to Ancient Rome and seeing SPQR plastered all over the city. The things we are good at, we dominate at, and we view the country as the worlds dominant economic power.

But TBH most people never thought something like this could happen in the modern America. We've never really had a war on our soil since the civil war, nobody except for really old people have ever lived through a pandemic, American's don't travel internationally much compared to most people because this country is so huge with so many great attractions and we in general don't take as much vacation time as most countries, so many people haven't been to Asia or Europe and seen how other cultures operate or deal with issues. So when this became an issue other continents had a better playbook and more collectivist "sacrifice for society" mentality while meanwhile here taking away the ability to be productive and make/spend money caused everyone to lose their mind. It's the only thing people here know. There was and to some extent still is a get back to business ASAP mentality. Heck I have been all over the world many times and see how other countries do things but I will admit I am one of those people that has always gone to work work when sick (even though I get paid sick time) because...well...i'm an American and that's what successful people do. Of course we do have a lot of people who are known for...ahem..."calling in"...but "those people" are generally considered deadbeats. Things were getting so competitive here that a few years ago companies actually started forcing their employees to use their vacation time lol.

Now granted that is changing as people are starting to realize this isn't going away soon and we have to find ways to deal with it. I think that as we became exposed, and our unprepardness was exposed to the world, things like universal affordable healthcare, paid sick time etc will become a lot more popular political topics in the USA.

July 6, 2020 at 10:49 PM

@the_Man sums it up but sadly also issues in that many refuse to believe in science from climate change deniers to anti-vaxxers and thus buy this is all "just a flu, numbers are inflated" etc. Plus, when the President refuses to wear a mask and spent months brushing it off as a hoax, pretty easy for scores of others to follow.

That and to be honest, many in our country as just flat out idiots. Sorry but it's true.

July 7, 2020 at 2:28 PM

Nevermind that it is a good time to visit Japan theory.There goes another country down into big trouble and with it another hopefull case of manageing corona without drastic measures.Or well, maybe if they had done the soft lockdown one or two weaks longer. Now it´s confirmed case numbers like one of the better European nations and sharp upward trend which suggests the actual situation is already worse.

That leaves China regarding locations with a bigger Theme Park choice and good risk, regarding covid that is, nevermind whatever else might be going on there right now. Now one just has to figure out how to get there without entering a plane or a cruiseship :-).

Personally i´m not quite fealing rich and adventurious enough for that big 3 month trip to a place where most people don´t speak any language i do anyway. I´m inclined to give Gardaland or Europapark a try however in the not too distant future if covid numbers keep going the way they go right now in the regions arround them.

July 7, 2020 at 12:08 PM

@Hans Meiser: Noted before Japan is tricky as A), it's an island where most of the population is crammed into major urban centers B) Tokyo sees more foot traffic in a day than NYC in a week and C) the culture revolves around "work first" more. Not a good combination for a pandemic.

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