September 22, 2008

Fun Factory!

For the past six months I've been working on a job that never gives me any down-time, or so it seems. Add into the mix that it's been a supremely frustrating experience and that I work at home, and you can see why I get a little batty week after week. Well, this past week was lighter than most and consequently allowed for some free time over the weekend. So Emily and I decided to hit the beach, just to hang out and relax. We headed down to Redondo Beach and while walking around the pier we encountered this:

Watch it! That clown's gotta gun!

The Redondo Beach Fun Factory is an indoor arcade on the boardwalk, it looked like it might be good for some cheesy fun, after all the word "Fun" is in the name of the place. I mean, there's no way this place could be filled with creepy, frightening creatures that would give children nightmares. Wanna bet?

I remember these characters from the book of Revelations...

The "Fun Factory" was filled with all sorts of video games, carnival games, and lots of creepy characters who were no doubt at one time supposed to amuse and delight little children... Children of the Corn perhaps, but to any other kids?... these things had to be spontaneous diaper-fillers! The place had old arcade games, carnival games of chance there was even a Tilt-a-Whirl.

Teddy was hung by the neck to serve as a warning to kids
to keep heads and arms inside the ride, or suffer his same fate.


Emily did find one of her favorite all-time arcade games - Skeeball!

Just to keep things interesting, I'm rolling ripe avocados!

Emily's a shark at Skeeball and she racked up a lot of tickets. I was playing at the machine next to her and couldn't figure out why I wasn't able to come close to her score. Then I discovered that my machine was only giving me 7 balls, not 9 as promised. Skeeball bastards screwed me out my tickets!

Then we came across this-- one of the original "Pong" games. Man, this thing was a piece of ancient history, but it still worked.

Last time I played this, I had hair! Take THAT Wii!

After the excitement from this mish-mash of arcade amusement started to wear off, we looked around and noticed how truly unnerving some of the rides and games were. Like this clown seesaw.

Don't mind me, I'll just be starring at your crotch the whole time.

There was a really disturbing Donald Duck ride. Clearly it's meant to be Donald Duck, but it's been given a bizarre paint-job to probably off-set any legal actions from the Disney Company. But the end effect is one of a drugged out Donald just waiting to take your kids away on a magical journey.

Duuuuuude... I'm sorta' freakin' out here...

And then we came across one of the more unsettling items. A coin-operated puppet show filled with characters that looked like some macabre mortician's fetish cabinet.

For our next number... we eat the chipmunk!

Emily found a vending machine from her childhood and couldn't wait to give it a try. It was a Flintstones-themed machine that you put 25¢ in and get a plastic egg with a toy prize inside.

Fun is just a quarter away!

But a closer look at the machine's window and what it said was unsettling...

Translation: "Hey kids! These came outta' my butt!"

Okay... so dinosaurs laid eggs. I got no problem with that, but it was the female dinosaurs, NOT the males (as far as I know). So what are these "eggs", where are they coming from, and why isn't someone stopping it?

But Emily was braver than I and ventured forth into the steaming pile of Dino "eggs" and what did she find? A purple reindeer finger puppet! Who knew the Fun Factory would deliver such delights?!

Hey guys... I... I can't feel anything below my neck! Guys?!

Before we left the Fun Factory we had to stop at the prize counter, cash in our tickets and see what treasures we had won! Could it be one of two racially insensitive Native American statues?

Chief WoodenFeathers on the right is yours for 3000 tickets! Or $750 cash.

The prize counter had a confusing ticket vs. tokens exchange rate towards credits, so despite the 70 or so tickets Emily had won playing Skeeball, it only amounted to 5 credits and consequently left our choices limited. We got a lizard.

I could help you redo your floor, I am a repTILE after all.

After winning a rubber lizard and a purple reindeer finger puppet, we bade farewell to the Fun Factory and dragged our chairs to the beach to catch the last of the afternoon sun.

It was a gorgeous day at the beach. A little too cool to get in the water, but nice for just sitting in a beach chair and dozing. Very few people around. It was quiet and relaxing... until the seagulls showed up.

Moments before we were descended upon by about 50 hungry seagulls. Seriously.

Fortunately we did not have any food with us, otherwise the air strike of oceanic birds would have pecked us to death. They quickly moved on and left us alone. Secretly I think they were after Purple Reindeer, whom we were able to safely smuggle out of Redondo and to freedom in the San Fernando Valley. I'm sure he'll be writing a book about his harrowing experience very soon.

1 comment:

Stephanie Korral said...

Could you show some video of the seesaw ride? Looks fun!