Don't know if anyone else listens to This American Life on NPR, but the most recent episode was all about Amusement Parks and had some interesting stories. Also our very own Jeff Putz and Dave Althoff got mentioned in the credits.
Yeah, they also talked to Bill (masstort.org). They didn't use any of the audio they recorded from any of us, which was disappointing because we spent between 90 minutes and half of a day talking to them.
The worst part about it is that the last two acts of the show were pretty awful. Puke stories? Really? Come on, now! The last act, with the guy who worked at Wildwood, was at least stylistically a good fit for the show, probably a better fit than a story about a website that its owner doesn't even want to talk about. But to me it sounded like about 2/3 of the stories on TAL, like someone trying to re-create the Santaland monologue but not being entertaining about it.
--Dave Althoff, Jr.
Oh, so they did mention the rideaccidents.com stuff? See, that's where I felt like the producer was fishing for something. She kept hounding on that. Asked what his motivation might be (how would I know?) and if there was some kind of secret nefarious intent on the part of the amusement industry. It was a weird conversation and I felt like she wanted something I wasn't giving her.
Well, not in the finished show. But in the interview, she was looking for information about rideaccidents.com, and was curious about what happens when big fans know all about what can go wrong. I think it adds to the mystery because Jared won't grant an interview about the site. I think that is because the site doesn't really have an agenda of its own; it is a news aggregator in the purest sense. The material speaks for itself. Plus, he may have professional reasons for not giving interviews about it. But that doesn't explain why the site exists.
She was quite upfront about hunting down the accident angle, And I think she was genuinely surprised that, knowing that Bad Things™ can happen, those of us who follow ride safety issues are not particularly scared as a result.
--Dave Althoff, Jr.
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