Thursday, November 3, 2011

Illustration Friday: Scary

Yay for carnivals!  A couple of weekends ago, the carnival came back to town, so of course, we had to go.  The kids love the rides, and I love watching them being spun and dropped and scared out of their wits.  Is that sadistic of me?

There's this one ride called The Zipper.  You have to be yea-tall to ride, and it costs five whole tickets, so you know it's a good one.  Plus, they don't accept single riders.   Basically, you sit inside a swinging metal cage with a little bit of padding, and it sends you looping round and round.  The number of flips you do is totally unpredictable.  Here's what it looks like:


My older daughter LOVES this ride, but my younger daughter chickened out.  Not that it mattered, because she was too short anyway.  I was hoping to find another single rider to partner with my daughter.  I even accosted a young boy, but he got this frightened look in his eye and pointed to a random girl and said she was going to ride with him.  Hehehe.  He probably went home to his mom and told her about a crazy lady going around saying, "You need a partner?  You need a partner?"

Anyhoo.  Now, I hate rides with big drops and flips.  Something about getting older and internal organs being all jiggly and loose makes the whole thing nauseating.  But the look of disappointment on my daughter's face... well, that just would not do.  So I had to suck it up.

"I'll ride with you.  See, Nona?  This is how much I love you." 

My goodness.

It felt like an eternity of sheer torture.  To be honest, I don't remember much because I had my eyes squeezed shut the whole time.  And for the life of me, I could not stop screaming no matter how hard I tried.  At one point, I felt my cell phone slip out of my pocket and I watched it banging around our cage, up and down, like an angry, rabid honey badger in a trap.  

"Just close your eyes, Mom, close your eyes!  It'll be less scary that way!"  

Do you know what it's like to be coaxed off the edge of a nervous breakdown by your young child?  Not my proudest moment.

I'm happy to say that I survived the ride.  My cell phone lost a button, but at least I did not lose my lunch.  


rachel awes said...

i'm with you, bella.
my body does not agree anymore
with rides that move my organs
round ~n~ round, or mess with
my belongings (i like all my
cell phone buttons!).
i way prefer sticking with your
adorable zipper art. that's ride
enough for this girliewhirl. as
your art always is. right to my heart.
lovelove to you everytime. dear bella. xoxs

rachel awes said...

p.s. i don't know how an "s" appeared after "xox" on my comment. maybe it makes it plural. as i said, lovelove everytime. :)

Ces said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ces said...


I got caught in a zipper. Unstuck me! hahahahahaha!

This is sooooooooo cool! The illustration I mean. Not the ride. Blech! I would have vomited all over the place and I may have had my eyeballs enucleated from my sockets.

Zippers are very scary and dangerous. Just ask men who don't wear underwear and had to zip up or down their pants zipper in a hurry one unfortunate moment. Screeech!

See? Your illustration is fantastic!!!


P.S. Sorry, I must delete the first comment. Ugh. I sounded illiterate.

Ces said...

Oy yuy! I just noticed the poor kids stuck in the zipper! Ouch! Just like that!!! That ride sounds like a Maquis de Sade thriller.

Ces said...

Crud! I can't spell. Marquis de Sade!!!!! (We share the same birthday).

Caroline said...

Bella the illustration is marvellous! I am TOTALLY with you on this one - I cannot (and should not) do these things! I once felt guilty about not joining my husband (!!)on rides at Ocean Park in Hong Kong and made the mistake of giving in to a runaway train ride.... Eyes tightly shut the whole way through - gibbering wreck at the end of it! Never again!!x

k.h.whitaker said...

Wow, that is one scary illustration and must have been one scary ride! Argghhh, I hate rides like that. I feel like it can't end fast enough. Glad you survived Bella, sorry for the loss of the phone button ;)

Indigene said...

Lol! I'm so glad, I don't have to do those scary rides, anymore!!! My children now, know the awful truth...Mommy was terrified, lol! Moms, are the bestest, bravest and most wonderful in the world! :) Way to go, Bella!!!! lol!

Tammie said...

you are way cool to do that for her! I use to love these crazy rides, zipper included. but yes, as i get older my spine and head do not think they are that wonderful anymore! Love love your art!

Andrew Finnie said...

Hehe, the BIG ZIPPER eh? Well what will they think of next. I am glass you did not lose your lunch, but just think, you could have shared it with some bystanders. :) I am sure they would have loved that! The existence of carnivals with rides that try and sploink the human body so that your toe coexists in the same plane as the back of your eyeball just proves that there is a God - and that HeSHE has a sense of humour.

When I saw your icon for the image I thought, gee this is unusual for Bella, - but as I zoom in I see the heaven is in the details :) Love those faces. I don't go on rides. I went on one when when I was 18 months old and lost not only my basinette but the bassoon I had been playing....

Ah, sorry I had a brain infarct. I was twenty years old and still feel sick from the experince. Carnival rides reverse suck :)

see yoooo, I'm off to take my yodelling lesson

good luck with your insides - just remember - it's the outside that counts (oh you were my 40000 visitor tother day thank you :) :) )

Andrew Finnie said...

haha I forgot to say what a great dynamic image it is and that is very very scary and that my magic word is uncesph. See blogger is trying to tell me that it has a soul and can read my mint ... er mind. (glass should be glad by the way I have given up alcohol and all I can thing of are vessles)

Ted Blackman said...

Now this is MY kinda art! A screaming, chaotic, horrifying spectacle!!

But seriously, this piece is really funny.

You know, the Zipper was always my favorite carnival ride. I rode it first. I'd always start with the very best and work my way down, and then when my money was all gone at the end of the night, I'd try to figure out what to do with the very last ticket and I'd always end up on the boring ferris wheel because that's all it cost.

But at my age I would reverse the process: I would start on the ferris wheel, throw up, and then go home.

BTW: the best part of the Zipper was walking underneath it afterwards, and picking up all the wallets, coins and purses on the ground.

Johanna Urban said...

Hello Bella!

Love the illustration, and your post (as always)!!!


Arija said...

Bella, you are so heroic!!!! Nothing, absolutely nothing, would have got me to get into a thing like that. So glad your daughter enjoyed the ride.

yoborobo said...

Bella, you are very brave. I would be terrified to go on that ride. I did, however, go on a ride at DisneyWorld a couple of years ago, because my youngest challenged me, and I was 'stepping it up'. OMG. I screamed the entire time, which had everyone else laughing hysterically. It's called the Himalayan (or something) and it goes backward in the DARK. No thank you. Last. Time. Ever. ;) xox

caela said...

I love your illustrartion looks awesome :) I like the concept and the layout works really well :D

Anonymous said...

Loooove the illustration! I would never ride on anything like that .. lol .. good for you!!

Krista said...

Ah, Bella, you are hilarious! That must have seemed like the longest moments of your life!! I love loops and twists, but I don't like drops!

thewillowsnest said...

haha.. I knew you'd do a great scary!! me.. nup.. no scary things wanna come out of my pencil ( or ear !!) hehe..
Love the wee ones holding on for dear life.. that in itself looks scary to me.. but the fab black background full of freaky scary clown faces really help to click the 'scare factor' !!

you're brave... or dumb.. hehe.. but a fabulous mama..

I would have puked.. I think you're my hero :)
love H xxx

Lori ann said...

omg bella, i can't believe you did it. you are a true hero. and your illustration is incredible too.

one time at magic mountain, one of my children talked, begged, me to ride the rollercoaster with her. you know, the big one, the one you can see from a mile away on the freeway. i finally agreed, like you, i couldn't bear the disappointment. so we waited in a line at least an hour long, my anxiety growing with each step. finally we reached the top (we may have been in the clouds by now) and i could see the first drop, and hear the screams. the cars came clattering in, all the people who had just completed the ride looking like hell. they all step out towards the exit and all of us step in to take their place. all the while my daughter encoraging me.
well, i did the worst thing ever. i stepped in the car, but i couldn't sit down. i just stepped right back out the opposite side. joining the exiting people. and the look on my childs face i will never forget. she was horrified.

she rode with strangers, had a great time and we laughed at me the rest of the day, month, still...
oh dear this is a long comment down memory lane.

good for you not bailing bella!
xox lori

Michaele Razi said...

Any ride named Zipper, is surely going to be fun/scary. Love the illo. Just awesome as usual!

Ted Blackman said...

What Lori Ann is talking about is the Collosus, at one time the most bad-assed roller coaster in the world. My brother and I rode it 7 times in a row one night when hardly anyone was in the park. Don't think I've ever been so wired.

Nowadays I just drink a cup of coffee and do two quick knee-bends, and I'm good.

Barbara said...

Not even for my grandchildren would I go on one of those rides!!!! Not kidding, Bella. I DID lose my lunch on one years ago and passed out on another. No thank you.
That zipper ride looks like something nightmares are made of.
I hate zippers anyway, don't you? No wonder they made a ride out of one.
Perfect illustration....definitely scary.

laughingwolf said...

lol... fun, bella - sorry about your phone! :(

my three kids were nuts about rides as well

when little, my sis was always more brave than i, with roller coasters, but i went with her anyway :O

laughingwolf said...

btw: pic #2 does not show for me :(

Amalia K said...


Well. I would be on that ride, that's for sure. And I'd pretend to be a single rider too...never know when a Hollywood star would be lost in a fair and in need of a partner, eh?

Love, LOVE, your zipper illo, Miss Bells. I hope that zipper is pulled up instead of down. Heh. (sorry, can't help it!)

:D :D :D

Draffin Bears said...

Hi Bella,

Fun, fun, fun!
Such a fabulous scary illustration today and love the look on the little ones faces, holding on for dear life.
The things we have to do sometimes, and glad that you survived and only the button on the cellphone came to grief.

Hope you are having a wonderful weekend and it is more relaxing and quiet than the scary ride!

deepazartz said... this scary illo!!! It's so cute! Fab imagination, Bella...I have said that many times, I know:)))
I used to love all sorts of rides, but now I am with's so nauseating!

Rabbit Town Animator said...

Oh yeah! Love this! Roller Coasters also freak me out big time! Glad to see a new illustration. Your work always makes me smile along with your words of encouragement on my blog. :) Much appreciated. I love the sense of movement in this one and the colours!!!! Love the zipper thing too ;) Too bad about the phone though...

Dusik said...

holy smokes Bella! i'm with you on this one! i am totally scared of those rides. here in toronto they have this thing, the taller and crazier the ride - the better. one ride you can see from far far away, thats how tall it is. and i would never ever go on that or any other ride, even if i was promised i could eat chocolate all my life and not gain weight!

but i am so proud of you! i don't know yet what would i do if my son asked me to go on one of those things.

Marie S said...

First off I adore the illustration of the zipper. I love zippers, the clothing closure, not the ride and this is perfect.
I also remember the last time I rode the zipper and I sounded just like you. I never thought it would be related to my organs floating around and being all jiggly!!
LOL! Thanks for the belly laugh, talk about jiggly.
Have a great weekend.

fizzyjinks said...

What a wonderful illustration! And then I read your account of the RIDE!!!!!! Crazy crazy woman! Never go on those rides after around 18 yrs old. That zipper ride looks particularly horrendous. I remember going on one like that when I was around 16, with individual compartments that threw you around upside down etc. It was horrible even then. Just remember holding my breath the whole time, but I was with a boy I liked so obviously I would have had to retain my coolness and it would have been"AMAZING"!!
Thanks so much for your recent visits to by blog - so very appreciated.

Ces said...

Hiyah! Woochow! Good night. Tsup!

Ces said...

I wonder how Google will change the time to daylight savings...

Andrew Finnie said...

Hey :) Gee that as a wild party. All those kids wearing men's t shirts, or was it tee shirts bearing men ... or :)

I met a psychologist the other day, and thought of you, her job was a doodle analyzer, hmm , that doesn't sound right does it. I can see that it in the back of the local paper, under the personal classifieds, Wanted: Doodle Analyzer, GSOH, must be short with own hair... teeth a preference but not essential....

Anyway, she looked at her patients images and analysed them, I thought it was great, in fact I nearly gave her my blog address, then something inside me said, "No, don't..."

I don't know why.

Andrew Finnie said...

Oh that doesn't sound right, Hmm, I thought of you because of the psychologist aspect, not because of the DA bit. You know doodles are the things which your draw while talking to your mum on the phone - pass me my shovel, I need to dig a deeper hole....

Andrew Finnie said...

Oh teef are overrated :) They just give you something to smile with.:) I am glad Ces likes tripe. I write plenty of it over at her blog :)

I would never ever write nonsense on your blog though :)

I am glad you applied for the position. I think the interview start soon :)

Anonymous said...

Oh what a good mum you are!
there is nO way!
I never was a ride person even as a kid..
motion sickness..
Even the name ..
my least favorite thing to sew..

Megan Coyle said...

such a fun illustration :) and I have always been one to avoid carnival rides because of the whole motion sickness thing. So I can completely relate :)

Rubin Pingk said...

Haha. Your sadism backfired!

We have a carnival that comes to town every July. My kids have yet to experience the swiftly spinning sparkling rust junkers but they will!

I love this!

I love the black behind the colors. The monstrous zipper feels like something from a Tim Burton movie.

So glad you are back posting art!!!

thewillowsnest said...

hi precious Bella .. your lovely comment got me all misty'''' thank you.. means an awful lot coming from the magical master illustrator extraordinaire' !!
came here to get me some gorgeous stripy love'.. but I can't complain.. I haven't done one :)

Andrea said...

Beware the zipper! Love the poor little guy who's stuck. My forty something g head hurts just thunking about that ride. I mis te scramblers most of all!

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Vanessa Brantley Newton said...

Stop! Stop! Stop!! I just want off!! Oh my goodness. I can't do this stuff anymore. Everything is hurting after the ride. Oh Lord! So glad you didn't loose your lunch he he he he he he he! The illustration is just brilliant and fun! I love it! Amamzing! Love you sistergirl! Stay on the ground.

Deborah said...

THAT is one of my biggest fears. I do not do coasters or twirly rides off the ground, although I LOVE the tilt-a-wheel. The teacups are a good ride too.

I love the illustration, the movement in it, your little ones hanging on for life, but I have great concern for those stuck in the zipper. Ouch.
**blows kisses** Deb

Amy C said...

OH MY GAWWWWD completely terrifying, I am no longer a fan of rides either.
Lovely illo, how to you manage to make terrifying so beautiful? There are sweet kids stuck in a zip.
Up to their waists STUCK in a ZIP - OUCH and utterly CUUUTE all at the same time.
p.s.I ate the cherry before you nommed my cupcake!

Nicky Linzey said...

I cannot go on anything like that - you must be very brave Bella! That zipper is so scary - I won't look at them in the same way again!

Amanda Dilworth said...

Oh Bella, i am definitely with you. You would not have got me on that horrible looking thing for all the tea in china! Absolutely love your illustration:)

laughingwolf said...

ok, see it now, thx... NO WAY i'd get on that thing, kids or no kids pleading! everyone 100 mile around would be covered with my lunch!:O lol

Cindy said...

"Just close your eyes, Mom, close your eyes! It'll be less scary that way!"

love it!

Karin Bartimole said...

Oh Bella, what a great story, and hysterically accurate depiction of such a 'Zippy' adventure! You ARE a good mom :) I can't even get on a swing anymore, my stomach lurches so easily by the up and down movement, and I was a major lover of anything scary, fast and high when it came to rides as a kid. Kudos to you!!
Thanks for your recent visit - I've been a computer slug of late, so I apologize for my delay in dropping by. sending love,
xoxox K

Steve E said...

Sometimes I read a Peep's blog posts and say, "Wow! i wish I knew that person better!" Well, that's what you do to me. Your imagination, perfections and imperfections, PLUS writing skill and humor, especially the humor...are attributes held only by specially-gifted Peeps.

I only know you through Ces, actually, that's pretty much! NO! I did NOT say "too much"--grin!

Next carnival, take along for your daughter's partner, an extra girl (who will be too scared to ride, but will hold your purse while YOU go on the 5-ticket rides again. LOL!!!


Anonymous said...

Omg lol. I went on the zipper ONCE...never again. I made the mistake of going on it just after I arrived to a fair. Let's just say my night ended early and I did lose my lunch lol