May 212013

20130515-154818.jpg Mother’s Day used to suck for me (mostly because nothing is ever good enough and I will find a reason to be an entitled asshole) until last year when I learned that DelGrosso’s Amusement Park in Tipton, PA has FREE ADMISSION for mothers on Mother’s Day and you don’t even have to provide DNA samples.

Granted, it’s a two-hour drive and a ride-all-day pass is only like $12 normally, but it’s the principle of the fact that I am being rewarded for those nine suicidal months where a fetal Chooch abused me internally and ballooned my stomach out to the point where people thought I was having twins.

Of all the horrors of pregnancy, THAT is the one thing that sticks with me. Vanity wins.

Plus, I was hoping that maybe the Douchebag Doppelganger would be back. You never know – maybe it’s Mother’s Day tradition for his potato sack wife. (“You have problems,” Lee said when I giddily mentioned this possibility to him at work.)

Henry invited his mom Judy to join us, which initially I thought was super sweet until I realized his motive was to hope her presence tamed me. I always try to curb my obnoxious streak when she’s around because I’m afraid she will yell at me. She has never yelled at me before, but there’s always a first time for everything and I don’t know if she keeps a wooden spoon in her purse or not.

I mean, even CHOOCH checks himself around her.


After two hours of me progressively turning up the radio over Judy talking about people I don’t know while admiring the countryside and pondering how people could live out there (“Do they have electricity?” she wondered as we passed a house that had a DirectTV satellite, a swimming pool, at least 4 quads and an SUV in the driveway. “They’re not AMISH,” I answered.), we finally made it to DelGrosso’s.

And it was COLD. Only around 50 degrees, I think.

Since I’m a mom, I didn’t have to get the ride-all-day wristband. But Chooch did, and now he’s winning our weird wristband competition. We keep our fair/amusement park/special event wristbands on until they fall off on their own, which drives Henry absolutely nuts. I wore my Jonny Craig concert wristband for over a month before it finally disintegrated on my arm. My co-worker Pam noticed it one day and thought I had been in the hospital. When I explained it to her, she shook her head and said, “I’d make you take a nap and then cut that off in your sleep!”

We both still have our Knoebels wristbands on (they’re plastic, so these bitches ain’t budging, much to Henry’s chagrin — he takes his wristbands off before we even get to the car), but now Chooch has a DelGrosso’s wristband on his other wrist and I hate it.

Anyway, wristband woes aside, it was a great day to ride shit! It wasn’t crowded at all, not that I have ever seen DelGrosso’s especially packed, so Chooch and I of course ran right onto the Wacky Worm. We asked Judy if she wanted to ride it too since it’s so mild, and she just laughed and said, “Yeah, no.”


Which is weird, because minutes later, Chooch and I were standing in line for the Crazy Mouse (the only ride there that ever really has a line because it’s the motherfucking Crazy Mouse), when Judy sidled on up behind us. I thought she just wanted to chat since Henry had wandered off on his first of 870 bathroom pilgrimages.

“I’m going to ride this,” she said all nonchalantly, causing Chooch and I to laugh. Good one, Judy! “No really, I was watching it from over there and it doesn’t look so bad,” she continued.

Meanwhile, Henry had returned from counting his hemorrhoids and was all, “What is the meaning of this?” At least, that’s what I assume his facial expression meant, but it could have been gas.

“She’s riding this with us,” I said in a “duh” tone with a shrug. So a 70+ year old lady is going to ride the Crazy Mouse, there’s nothing to see here. Go sit down, Henry.


The kids running the ride were stoked that Judy was riding and took extra care with getting her strapped in, which is good because I was like, “I don’t know. Maybe put your seatbelt on?” I’m not the best when it comes to being helpful. And absolutely no one is surprised.

“This is what you do for your grandkids,” Judy said as our car ascended the inaugural hill. Quick, someone tell my mom that!


Immediately after, Judy went on the merry-go-round with Chooch.





A little while later, after we had eaten (Chooch’s least favorite part because god forbid he has to sit down at a table, and I can relate to that but I have officially reached that age where eating is imperative to help temper some of the impending motion sickness that I am inevitably going to face), Judy said, “I want to ride those airplanes.”

We couldn’t imagine what she was talking about. I thought maybe she had seen some ride in Kiddie Land that she wanted to try, but then as we continued to walk, she pointed and said, “There! The airplanes!”

It wasn’t “airplanes,” it was the fucking Yo-Yo.


Let me tell you something about the Yo-Yo: these aren’t your ordinary amusement park swings. These sons of bitches are SCARY. County fairs usually have the Yo-Yo in their arsenal of death traps. I always feel incredibly unsafe and especially white-knuckled on the Yo-Yo.

But Judy wanted to ride it so I obediently followed suit.



There is this one point during the ride where it waits to pick up a good, semi-whiplash speed before this sickening “whoosh” is sounded and all of the bucket seats TILT BACK to the point where I always feel like I’m going to slide out backward. And I don’t know if it was because it was so windy that day, but we were all literally banging and crashing into each other.

I prayed for the most painless death possible. Please god, fling me into that tree and not one of the 785912 metal spikes around the Yo Yo’s perimeter that are suddenly so apparent to me that I know I AM GOING TO PERISH.


But Judy loved it! Look at her go! I hope I’m as cool as she is when/if I’m a grandma (and I better be a grandma someday because I already have tomes upon mental tomes of incriminating Chooch tales to share with his future spawn).


“I rode the Yo Yo better than you!” is what I imagine Chooch is saying in this photo because he makes everything a competition. He must get that from Henry.

I thought about asking Judy some questions about her day at DelGrosso’s, but if she’s anything like her son, I’m sure it would have been a bunch of monosyllabic answers. I’ll have to get some wine in her.




  8 Responses to “Mother’s Day Motion Sickness, Part 1: Judy Wilds Out”

  1. Judy is a rockstar! And Henry looks so much like her. Of all the rides I’ve ever been on, some of my worst motion sickness comes from those damn swings. I’m not sure what it is about them, maybe they aren’t fast enough to stave it off? Still jealous of your parks.

    • She really is! I was so proud of her!

      There is this ride at one of the fairs that I LOVE called the Freak Out — it swings you around like crazy, but I never get sick on it. Ever! But then something simple like the Pirate Ship makes me green-faced now. It sucks! Dramamine doesn’t work for me. :(

      • Correy gets super motion sick, so now I just blame it on him. It’s contagious or something. I’ve never tried Dramamine but maybe I’ll have to this summer so I can ride all of the rides at the fair without puking up corn dogs.

  2. This is kinda lame but I’m not afraid to say it, this made me tear up a little bit, that’s so sweet and so great you have this memory on video.

  3. This is an awesome post! I grew up going to Del Grosso’s, well, that was back when it was Bland’s Park, which looking back is a terrible name for a park, I mean, not that Del Grosso’s is much better but dang they could use work on their park naming up there. This brings back some memories although I usually didn’t venture out of Kiddie Land and I always got sick from a spinning ride that was kind of like the poor man’s version of the Disney Tea Cups ride and I’d end up lying down in the back seat of our Oldsmobile praying for an early death while the rest of our amusement park group finished riding and then went to Eat’n’Park for a late dinner. So yeah, FUN TIMES!

    • Thanks Laurie!

      I had never heard of DelGrossos’s until 2 years ago, surprisingly. I was just happy that I got to ride the Space Odyssey before they took it out!

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