CoasterBuzz Podcast #209 posted

Posted Monday, August 22, 2011 12:04 AM | Contributed by Jeff

Jeff, Mike and Gonch review this week's news in the amusement industry.

  • Jeff gives a trip report for Silverwood, and it isn't very favorable.
  • Iron Wolf being retired from Six Flags Great America.
  • Zippin Pippin starts doing night rides, city has a huge success on its hands.
  • Disney has a damn good quarter.
  • So is the economy really as bad as the headlines would lead you to believe? Our bubbles don't indicate that.
  • Legoland Florida is doing all of the right things prior to opening the park, now giving teachers annual passes. How did Hard Rock Park miss this boat?
  • Off topic: Don't hate the pretties. Take care of yourself. Don't wait until you can't fit in a roller coaster. Jeff tells a Coke story, with extra sugar.
  • Six Flags Magic Mountain's Deja Vu moving to Six Flags New England.
  • Canada's Wonderland announces Leviathan, a 300+ foot B&M roller coaster. Jeff approves. Enthusiasts whine a little.
  • Cedar Point announces fake dinosaur walk-through, retirement of Paddlewheel Excursions. Cedar Point fans are annoyed, especially if they have kids.
  • Lightning strike at Discovery Cove sends some people to the hospital.
  • Off-topic: Hot tennis players.
  • The Fall Affair at Holiday World will be September 17, 2011. The registration deadline is approaching! Also, BooBuzz is Friday, October 7. Get the details!
  • You can get the latest headlines on CoasterBuzz from the Twitter. Follow us @coasterbuzz. You can also like us on Facebook.
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Link: CoasterBuzz Podcast

Tuesday, August 23, 2011 8:30 PM

I'd love to see someone say something to my mother when we're somewhere and she has to use a cart. She's got crippling RA, and can't stand on her feet for more than an hour at a time (sometimes even less, especially if she's walking on any sort of terrain) without them cramping and curling into a mess.

I hate to say I don't like to be around when she's got to use a cart, but the stares and I'm sure the comments people make under their breath make it really difficult. She also has handicapped parking, which causes trouble, too, because she doesn't "look handicapped" and she can "walk normally like everybody else." Little do you know what's going on inside her body.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011 9:04 PM

I question anyone suggesting that unemp benefits can be a disincentive to work. Perhaps for a slight few bit that's doubtful.

Just because your job ends doesn't mean debts and bills do. I cut out every bill I could during my unemployment. No cable or Internet or sat radio. No gas for fun stuff. No eating out.

And it was still a struggle with my $268 net per week.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 12:19 AM

Well said, Josh.

Yes, there are people out there who are abusing the system, or are having issues they inflicted upon themselves. But there are also those of us with "hidden" handicaps who look perfectly fine but for various reasons may need scooters and the like.

(I may be in that category myself -- awaiting diagnosis now. And I'm not just talking about the Type 1 diabetes which I've never made secret...)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 12:23 AM

Why is it that the obvious existence of people who legitimately have a handicap or a difficult unemployment situation apparently invalidates any conversation about people who are not legitimate in either case? Did anyone ever try to make a case that the legitimate people don't exist? I'm pretty sure they didn't.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 12:29 AM

Because my mom doesn't "look like she has a handicap" and her using a scooter could be mistaken for laziness, and I'm sure it has been in the past. Same goes for others who are in the same situation.

Sure seems like people paint that group of fat/lazy/taking advantage of whatever with a *very* broad brush. The cynic in me says "don't give anyone the benefit of the doubt, they're all assholes." You know, what? 98% of the time, I'm right.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 12:42 AM

My mom needs a cart when we go to Walmart or to Dollywood, for example. She doesn't look disabled either, but has degenerative bone disease and metal rods in her spine, as well as other problems that prevent her from walking or standing for a long period of time. We don't think about what anyone else is saying under their breath about her, because the people who might be doing that don't matter at all. The only thing that matters is that she has a little bit of independence and fells some kind of dignity. We are just happy that she can get out of the house and involve herself with the rest of the world sometimes.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 3:06 AM

Jeff said:

CP Chris said:
I've heard more and more about programming jobs going overseas. Possibly due to a talent shortage here, but mostly as a cost savings measure.

It's not always a cost savings measure (sometimes it is). I don't know what the allocation of H-1B's is, but the number is huge in Seattle. I don't think there are many corn-fed Midwestern folks left to pluck out and move out here. You have to fill that need in some way, and for better or worse, that means bringing people in from overseas. It's not an issue of "greedy corporations" short-selling America.

I certainly get that point. I should have clarified that my example was mostly pertaining to companies that specialize in something outside of the computing/software field that keep a handful of programmers on staff for whatever proprietary stuff their systems run. Those are the guys I know of who are seeing their jobs disappear to India. Obviously it's a different situation for the large software companies like Microsoft and Google.

Although you make me wonder how so many in that field are out of work around here, but they're so desperate on the west coast they have to import the jobs. I suspect a number of them are eventually making the move like you did, while others are probably finding other fields. The rest likely just don't have the skills or means to make a cross country move.

rollergator said:
"Entitlements" has become such a four-letter word thru the magic of politics...

Bingo. I'm shocked (although I shouldn't be) at how successful certain politicians have been at getting large groups of people to want to cut something that is rightfully theirs. The only reasons the funds for these programs are tight is because the way they've been mismanaged and underfunded by the same politicians who now want to eliminate them. Fix the funding issues (like not capping Social Security tax for incomes above $106 k) and stop congress from "borrowing" from the funds and they'll be just fine.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 1:44 PM

Tekwardo said:
I question anyone suggesting that unemp benefits can be a disincentive to work.

Maybe we need to define terms here, but this is an unequivocal fact by the traditional economics definition of "incentive" and traditional economic assumptions of rational behavoir, etc. An incentive means a motivator. A disincentive means a demotivator.

If you get $0 to not work and $10 to work, a job is worth $10. If you get $1 to not work and $10 to work, a job is worth $9. You are less motivated to find a job.

This is different from saying that people can/should/do/will intentionally avoid working because of unemployment payments, but it is still a disincentive, by economic definitions and assumptions.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 9:21 PM

If my expenses are $5 and not working pays $1, it doesn't matter if the difference between working and not working is only $9 instead of $10, I need that job either way. Unemployment benefits help ease the pain a bit, but it's still painful.

As for outsourced vs "just don't have the bodies", companies like Microsoft and Google do have a pretty high bar -- many unemployed Americans sadly just don't make the cut. I know our office is hiring and having problems finding enough qualified people. The Triangle Tech cutouts just don't have the skills we need.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011 10:39 PM

I dunno, I've met some stupid people at Microsoft. :)

Thursday, August 25, 2011 11:24 AM

Jeff said:
I dunno, I've met some stupid people at Microsoft. :)

Do they have in their email signatures

"Windows ME inventor" ?

Thursday, August 25, 2011 2:36 PM

They're the ones who worked on Windows ME, Windows BOB, and "Clippy"...

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

Thursday, August 25, 2011 5:48 PM

There are Clippy shirts in the company store. I think he's coming back.

Thursday, August 25, 2011 11:07 PM

I've always liked how Clippy could even help you out with a suicide note.


Friday, August 26, 2011 12:15 AM

Do you mean he is being reanimated, or do you mean he is enjoying a cultural revival?

Some years ago during a radio interview, Jian Ghomeshi* made the observation that there is about a 20-year statute of limitations on pop culture. That is, at a certain point, people can admit to at least appreciating what they have been dismissing as crap. He cited as evidence the crowd response when they started playing ABBA songs in concert.

Maybe there is something to that. Or maybe Moxy Früvous' audiences were just weird like that. :) Or maybe their mash-up of Dancing Queen and Lou Reed's Walk on the Wild Side was just that cool.

--Dave Althoff, Jr.

* I think it was Jian. It could have been Mike Ford, but I think it was Jian.


Last edited by RideMan, Friday, August 26, 2011 12:26 AM
Friday, August 26, 2011 1:42 AM

Clippy and his "advice" has generated some of the funniest support calls I've ever received. Generally from people who were convinced he was some sort of demon virus from hell who was trying to get them to destroy their documents/computer.

I kind of miss the calls about Clippy. Our building finally migrated from Office 2000 to 2010 about six months ago. Although those support calls were kind of fun too, as they generally involved the user's head simply exploding when they viewed the Office 2010 layout for the first time. :)

Tuesday, August 30, 2011 10:55 PM

Getting back to the source of this thread, Podcast #209 and the talk about Silverwood...

Jeff, if you have not done so already, you really need to take a long drive down IR-5 past Portland, and just past Salem, to Turner. While you are out there you must take Simon to Enchanted Forest. You know all that discussion about family friendly attractions and how there is more to family attractions than kiddie rides? Well, Roger Tofte has a very interesting take on that. Go see it.

(You also need to go to the Western Washington Fair at Puyallup,, but I don't know how 'family friendly' that is...)

--Dave Althoff, Jr

Tuesday, August 30, 2011 11:17 PM

I've got less than four weeks to go as a Washington resident... I don't see it happening. Not even sure if I'll get to the Puyallup Fair. Might try to squeeze in Wild Waves while I still have the Microsoft discount there.

Thursday, October 27, 2011 10:39 PM

Any chance Podcast #210 will be posted soon? I miss it.

Friday, October 28, 2011 12:54 AM

Yeah, sorry about that. Life has really gotten in the way the last couple of months. I finally got my junk unpacked last weekend after the move, but couldn't find some of the adapters I needed to set up. It was almost me and Mike.

This weekend, I can do, but we'll have to see who else is available.


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