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Copyright 2009-2010 by
Mary Brotherton
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Inside my Brain

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Sunday, August 25, 2002

Roller Coaster
Life is one big, messed up roller coaster ride. It starts out slowly, and when you are on top of the world, the bottom drops out. You find yourself twising and turning, and wondering if you can hold on. You have to trust that your security bar or strap or belt or whatever will hold you in place, and that if not, gravity alone will keep you from falling a million miles to your death...but then you find yourself thinking that maybe falling out would not be so bad, because then, at least you would not have to repeat the sequence of loops and turns again. You are being jerked around, bobbled about, squashed together between two strangers who stink, and you find yourself almost hoping that the next time you are upside down, the restraining bar will just open and let you either fall or fly. So why, then, when the ride comes to an end, and you are stepping out of the car, why do you stagger to the end of the line to do it all over again? Why don't you go home, and sit in a corner for the rest of your life where things never change, where you know every turn, and you know that you won't be tossing your lunch along with your pocket change into the pond that is underneath the roller coaster? Why don't you take the quiet, uneffective, self-effacing route and be safe? Why DO you go to get on this ride again, or stumble around to the next one hoping it will be even more scary and dangerous? Because you are having fun! While you are strapped in that car, chugging along upward, you are bored out of your wits, and it's not so much fun but once the ride is finished, and you are talking about it with your friends, you squeal with delight at how much fun your ride was! That's life! One big, roller coaster ride.