I think I am bad at water slides. That can’t be possible, 7-year-olds around the world are thinking, but actually it is most certainly possible. It sounds a little pitiful stating aloud, but here you me, this is no personal springboard for insecurity! Those “rides” are really just doomed tunnels of darkness and confusion, posing obstacles from beginning to end! The first being securing an appropriate reaction for the trip down. As in: do I scream or do I not scream? Is there any good option? Option one is to go for it: scream. This initially may get a smirk from the bro who gave me the “go ‘head” nod, but once I’ve traveled halfway down the slide, 100% sure that I am alone, it all seems a little silly. Screaming while no one is around? For what? For whom?? To what avail??? This brings me to option two, which is to NOT scream. And here is where my judgment in decision-making is tested. Flying down a waterslide in silence is one of the few activities that achieves the small feat of making me feel awkward around myself. In the 5-second time frame in which I realize what I am doing and that I am alone, quiet, I think, “This. This is uncomfortable.”
The 5 seconds come to a halt. Obstacle one darted, or at least behind me, and obstacle number two welcomes me like a big slap in the face. Literally. It is the end of the slide and sunlight bursts into my vision once again. “You have .089 seconds to prepare yourself for water!” the air yells to me. But HAHA you sucker! Guess that’s not enough time! Sunlight leaves just as quickly as it came, and I think: “Wait. WHAT’S HAPPENING.” Then maybe: “ehh drowning.” I have lost control of my limbs, my entire body even. Tosses, turns, involuntary full-body swirls. Water molecules run game on my nostrils, creeping up my face until they come out of my freaking eyes. (I think this happened to me once.) Oh, and would you get a load of that. It’s all over.
The tumultuous ride has run its course and now I must exit the pool. I sheepishly lift my head above water, keeping my whole body submerged long enough to readjust my straps/bows/tassles/windchimes before casually climbing the stairs. My face tries to read “Ah, what a breeze. Engaging with a water slide is such child’s play. So easy. TOO easy for someone like me. And see how put-together I look after nearly drowning? Pretty good, eh?” This is the hardest part though, and I actually have yet to deliver on such a look. This has been confirmed from the “uhhhhhh” look I can pick up on, even from behind those ugly white Oakleys. Yeah I said it, they’re ugly!!!!! Also because I know my heart is most likely pumping too fast to register coolness on my face. Which is still bleeding chlorine.
And just think. That all was one little minute of my life.