My Rebellious Streak

You wouldn’t think it to look at me, but I have a bit of a rebellious streak.  It comes out in the oddest places, and can lie dormant for months or years before it shows up again, but it’s there nonetheless.

The most recent occurrence of it was when my youngest nephew, Gabriel, came out to visit me back in August.  The trip was my present to him for his tenth birthday.  I had mailed him a bunch of brochures of the different things to see and do around the bay area, and told him he could pick four.  Alcatraz was one of his picks, of course, but another of his choices was to go to Six Flags.

The first thing that bothered me about the park was that you couldn’t take your belongings with you on the roller coasters, or other high-octane rides.  Instead, they wanted you to rent a locker near the attraction for $1, but you were only allowed to rent the locker for up to two hours.  After that – read a sign situated atop the group of lockers – the park had the right to remove any items from the lockers.  There were at least six coasters at the park, and a few other thrill rides, so that would mean at least six extra dollars would have to be spent to store our stuff while we rode.

Now, I’ve been going to theme parks ever since I was ten.  I LOVE them.  I know the dangers in bringing your stuff with you, and generally don’t travel with a lot of items that can get lost or damaged on the thrill rides.  However, this park wouldn’t even let us strap our backpacks around our legs, or our cameras at our waist in order to ride, like you can at other parks.  And those other parks even have cubbys at the other side of the coaster’s tracks for you to store your stuff while you enjoy the ride.  Why this particular Six Flags didn’t, was beyond me.

But no, this extortion-like rule wasn’t where my rebellious streak showed up.  Although in hindsight, I can see where it might have been a spark that initiated my indignation.  No, Craig and I gathered our items, took them outside the gates and rented a larger locker that we could come back to, if needed (whether to get something to snack on, or store any tchotchkies we might have purchased throughout the day).  What got me was when a security guard refused to give me a reason to follow his “order”.

We were about halfway through the day, and heading to the next ride.  Looking on the map, we found an area that seemed to provide a shortcut from where we were to said ride, but when we got to the area it was cordoned off by a row of two-foot tall pillars set all along the entrance to the path.  When we looked down the path, we could see a similar barricade about 100 yards down, but saw nothing between the two fences to indicate why this area was blocked off.  No construction cones . . . no potholes in the walkway . . . nothing.

We also saw a couple guests coming from the other side of the path toward where we stood.  These two gentlemen calmly traversed the area, stepped over the pillars, and continued on their way.  That was good enough for me, so I stepped over the makeshift fence & began to walk to the opposite side.  That’s when I heard a deep voice asking for my attention.  I turned, and the security guard told me that the section was closed to guests.  When I asked why, his response was a curt “I don’t have to give you a reason.”

Let me give you a little back story about me.  I was raised by a woman who believed the “Because I said so” argument was a load of crap.  Her own parents had used that line on her a lot, and my mom refused to subject her kids to the same dictatorship that she’d been exposed to.  And I believe I’m a reasonable person.  If the security guard had given me any reason, I’m sure I would have stepped back over the barricade and my group would have taken the long way around to our destination.

However, to receive no reasonable response from the man, just another round of “I don’t have to give you a reason”, I felt my face get red with anger.  I simply looked at him and said, “Then I don’t have to listen to you”, turned and continued walking along the shortcut to the other side.

Now, I’m not one who bucks authority all that often, and certainly not in such a bold manner.  As I walked the length of the pass, my heart beat frantically in my chest, and I was certain that at any moment I’d hear him yelling behind me to stop, or that I’d hear rapidly-approaching footsteps, followed by a firm grip on my arm which would lead to my expulsion from the park.  In my mind, I saw myself telling Craig to take Gabriel and Athena through the rest of the park without me and that I’d sit and wait it out in the car.  Just because I was rebelling, didn’t mean they should miss the fun too.

However, no loud reprimand came, and the only footsteps I heard were from Craig and the kids, who had jumped the same barricade after the security guards had walked away.  Our enthusiasm was a little subdued for the next hour or so, worrying that we’d be escorted out at any moment, but after that we were able to enjoy the rest of the day, event-free (except for those we’d paid for).  Craig and I talked with the kids a lot about the fear that was rushing through us all, and I explained why I had rebelled like I had.  I also explained that – had there seemed a real danger – I would have followed the rule.

I totally believe that we need certain rules . . . so long as they’re explained to me like I’m an intelligent being with a reasoning brain.  Expect me to blindly follow “orders” or treat me like I can’t think for myself, and just watch me rebel.


8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Kaye George
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 09:27:03

    You sure have me wondering why that area was roped off! You need to go back and snoop. 🙂

    I’ll bet the minimum-wage security worker had no idea why.


    • Alyx Morgan
      Oct 07, 2011 @ 09:28:47

      LOL I’d wager you’re right, Kaye. I’ve often found the “Because I said so” line gets used when someone doesn’t have a legitimate reason for their request; or, as you said, doesn’t know the answer.

      Thanks for stopping by today. 🙂


  2. Craig
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 09:43:32

    You’re right Kaye. If the security guard admitted that he didn’t know the reason, that, also, would’ve been a different scenario. It would’ve given us more credit as intelligent human beings, and we may have followed the rules just so that the guard wouldn’t get into trouble (that’s just how considerate we are of others). It was his belligerent tone that virtually dared us to defy him. We called his bluff.

    Of course, for the next hour I expected park security to recognize us in the crowd, mysteriously talk into the walkie-talkies at their shoulders, and have big guards in sunglasses and bike helmets surround us and ‘ask’ us to leave the park.


  3. Kaye George
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 09:45:27

    This added a layer to the thrills and chills, eh?


  4. Dolly Chamberlin
    Oct 07, 2011 @ 15:11:40

    This rebel in you, I don’t know where you get it from.;} lol


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