This week, I decided to seek the advice of a pharmacist. “It’s actually pretty simple,” I said, “I’d like to go to La Ronde [an amusement park] without being sick.” The pharmacist laughed. See, the last time I rode a roller coaster, I was really young, and the result wasn’t pretty. It didn’t result in extreme projectile vomiting, or anything graphic like that. I just felt really, really nauseous, and after that one ride, I’d had enough.
But time passed since then, and I’m the type that likes to face obstacles, fears, and basically anything that brings me discomfort that I feel shouldn’t. So when a colleague invited me to visit La Ronde, I knew what I had to do. My body didn’t like being thrown around like a ragdoll, it was pretty clear about that before. But I wanted to be flung around… it seemed like it might be fun. So I thought about it, and it hit me… why not prevent my body from expressing itself? Surely, that would solve everything… right?
And so I sought anti-nausea/motion sickness pills, and soon enough, I had to make a choice. There was this one patch that you could wear on your neck for up to three days (hardcore), or, there was something far simpler: ginger root pills. One had a list of medicinal ingredients, and the other, one ingredient… and a fairly harmless one at that. Since I’m the type that likes to eliminate as many ingredients as possible, and only take what I need when I need it, I swore loyalty to the almighty ginger root; however, my choice came with a risk. In my experience, with alternate medicines, you never really know whether they’re going to be effective, or not.
Given my background, I knew that the responsible thing to do would be to test the solution before actually trying it out in the field. So, like a bold urban cosmonaut, I grabbed hold of a book, and boarded a local bus. There, I performed a crucial test that in no way reduced my overall manliness… the basic travel sickness test: could I possibly read while traveling? And not feel sick, for once? Could my body, with ginger, achieve what was previously unachievable? (If the event had been televised, viewers would no doubt have held their breaths in suspense.)
I travelled to an electronics store, bought some stuff, and came back, reading both ways. The result? Projectile vomi- nah, all went well… I just felt about 10% of my usual motion sickness. Good enough for my upcoming roller coaster torture session? Time will tell… but either way, I can officially say that I once boarded a bus primarily to see if I’d get sick from it. And that’s something.
Update: Actual shuttle launch resulted in zero nausea. Success!