Worlds of Fun. What can I say? It is one of the biggest and best memories of my youth. It is a theme park that has been in my memory since as far back as I can recall.
In elementary I remember going with my family. When I lived with my Mother in Kansas, we would drive to KC, Mo to stay with family often. Sometimes we would get to go to Worlds of Fun!
I remember the night before, my cousins and I could barely sleep! The anticipation of the next day's events were almost unbearable. Finally, the sun would come up and we would load into the station wagon. I loved sitting in the very far back, no seat belts of course, complete freedom.
Once you saw the giant, colorful water tower, you knew the fun was about to begin! And it did. All day of fun at an amusement park. I saw several concerts there with the likes of The Charlie Daniels Band and one of my favorites, Juice Newton. I have but a few photo's of myself on some rides and I cherish them.
Fast forward to middle school. I was now living in KC with my Dad. I had a season passport every summer to World's of Fun and I used the heck out of it. Went ALL the time! My friends and I would stay all day until the park closed! At one point they opened up kind of a party tent. I mean it was incredible! It was called Exit 54 (I had not yet learned about the infamous STUDIO 54) It opened in the evening and had the loudest 80's music you ever heard and you just DANCED until the park closed.
When I was in 8th grade, word had spread like wildfire that a celebrity would be at Worlds of Fun. Now, this was not uncommon as there were many concerts there. But this was different. There would be a celebrity using the park. Just walking around like a normal person! That celebrity was Jason Batemen.
I don't exactly recall everything he was doing in the 80's acting wise, but I did know his sister was on Family Ties and I knew who he was without a doubt. And come on, he was a fox.
So I went that day. I looked at every turn to catch a glimpse. I knew if he met me he'd want to marry me. I just knew it.
Word was out that he was on the Orient Express roller coaster, my favorite ride. So my friends and I go and wait at the exit for him. Oh I was giddy! Suddenly people start stirring, I can tell he will be in front of me soon. I see him coming off the ride! Closer, closer.....and gone. Passed right before me. We didn't even make eye contact.
Well that was that. I literally went on with the rest of my day, went on with my summer. Went on with my life.
Since then I have looked at celebrities in a different way. You feel like you know them because they are in your life so much. Sometimes every day. But remember, we are not in theirs. I know now they are just working stiffs like the rest of us, they just happen to make the big bucks. That is quite fine by me, I am very happy living the simple life.
But that doesn't change the fact that pop culture is a huge part of my life. Music and movies have been my constant companions since I was a very young girl. Entertainers are valuable to me. I want to know everything about them. Who they are married to, what they eat, what is their favorite color. But unlike the paparazzi, I only want to know what they want me to know. Despite popular opinion, their lives are not (or should not be) on display. Their WORK is what is public and what is on display.
P.S. I am a huge Jason Bateman fan :)
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