Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Vintage Fortune Teller Machines: Face Time with Zoltar.

My hubby is 43 years old. Going on about 11. And he's the absolute best partner to have with me on my Roadtrips.

Whenever we come across the mechanical fortune tellers at vintage parks, I always have my picture taken with them, plunking in my quarter to receive my reading for the day. A few times the machine greedily eats up my coin and I never receive the fortune, even after shaking the aforementioned fortune teller, which probably doesn't set up the very best vintage amusement park karma. I picture a secret society of mechanical fortune tellers, with an annual fortune teller ball where they all meet up and swap stories. A throng of Estrellas, Esmereldas and Grandma Fortune Tellers converge on some seaside amusement park, settling into tight little groups, and chat about which tarot cards show up in their never-changing displays, how their mechanical parts need oiling and maintenance (but seldom get it), and compare notes on that peculiar woman with the cat eyeglasses and vintage sweaters who is at once thoroughly respectful of their history and supremely irritable when she doesn't receive her fortune card, shaking the whole fortune teller booth before walking away with a scowl.

Santa Monica's Pacific Park has an actual Zoltar machine.Although it was a slickery cold day, I made sure Ben had some alone time with the mystical seer, much like Tom Hanks' character in "Big" - a film which is not only one of Ben's favorites, but one Ben can often relate to, being a Very Tall Boy. For those of you who are curious, the amusement aprk used for the film is New York's Rye Playland, a park which will be visited later on for my Cotton Candy Roadtrip.

Oh -- I'm fortysomething going on 12 or so. A Very Tall Girl.

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