Water Parks Are Filthy Cesspools of Despair


It’s hot. It’s so very, very hot. It’s so hot that you can poach your morning eggs in your armpit. It’s so hot that you’re willing to face the ultimate funk in order to reach a body temperature safe to humans: Water parks. You might imagine yourself with a pina colada in hand, butt down in an inner tube, lazily floating on the lazy river. But we all know the reality of the situation is far more disgusting. Plus, NO ALCOHOL ALLOWED.

Bobbing amongst the people potage in a neverending river. Rubbing up on your fellow humans in line with no clothing barrier. Soggy French fries floating in the wave pool. These are a few of the nastiest realities about water parks — but here’s the absolute worst:

1. There’s a 12-year-old girl who is currently fighting for her life because of brain-eating amoeba she caught at Willow Springs Water Park in Little Rock. This is after the very same water park had an outbreak of the very same infection in 2010. Water parks never learn.

2. On that horrific tip, waterborne illnesses are no stranger to water parks everywhere. And if they do test clean for bacteria, it’s because they’re loading that water with so much chlorine that your eyes puff out of your face and your hair transforms into radioactive dreads.

3. Water parks will body shame you! The employees at the Adventure Oasis Water Park told Madelyn Sheaffer that she needed to cover up, even though she was wearing the exact same amount of clothing as many other ladies. The only difference? She’s not 15 years old and 100 pounds. While this might not be applicable to all water parks, I wonder how many women have been shamed and were then too embarrassed to come forward? Let’s round down to about a million, and put it on the cons list.

4. A haiku for a water park bathroom:

Water park bathroom
Wet and slimy fungus town
Say goodbye to foot

5. That top is coming off at least once and you know it.

6. Swim diapers that are definitely not creating a perfect seal.

7. The fact that there are people on the internet asking if they can go to a water park with pinkeye should be of serious concern to us all*.

8. I have a memory of going to a water park when I was very young, and seeing a giant whitehead on the back in front of me. It was all I could look at! I’m sure it popped in that tunnel.

9. I definitely peed in the water of several water parks in my day, and I also for sure pooped in the neverending river at WaterWorld in Concord Sacramento circa 1985.

10. Things found in water park drains:

We’ve pulled out innumerable weaves and fake nails. Lots of little dead animales— voles, mice, birds, the like. Band-aids, condoms, dirty swim diapers, tampons, glass, trash of all sorts, including food trash. Wallets. Phones. Empty sunscreen tubes. Just, everything. People are disgusting.

11. All this, and they’re not even cheap! If there’s a good chance I’m getting pregnant in your wading pool, I don’t want admission to cost as much as a year of Montessori. And because you’re not allowed to bring your own food into the park (because of safety?), you might want to take out a second mortgage on your house so you can afford to buy some Dippin’ Dots at a place probably called the Coconut Hut.

*I like that the question just below is “what size areoles do you prefer?” That could be reason #12 to never go to a water park again.

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