The Drawl

For Your Amusement

Illustrations by John Patrick Thomas April 23, 2013 Published in the May 2013 issue of Houstonia Magazine

Word is that RCS Entertainment, led by a former Astroworld manager, is “developing a family-oriented 2,500-acre theme park resort in the Houston, Texas area,” which is exactly what you would expect a former Astroworld manager to do. Accordingly, Houstonia immediately launched a full-scale investigation—exactly what you would expect usto do—and after months of digging we unearthed the following top-secret memo detailing plans for the facility. As you’ll see, the new park is determined to avoid a common criticism leveled against Astroworld (1968-2005), namely that it was a blandly generic EveryWorld far removed from the Houston experience.


Gone are the days when amusement parks could serve up heavily salted fries and foot-long hot dogs made from God knows what sitting quietly under glowing heat lamps for hours. Guests want to confront their obesity, not abet it. Hence, the Beltbuster, a giant speeding conveyer belt where everyone either keeps up or gets thrown into a vat of ancient grease from Six Flags. The sweat will pour off your brow as you’re subjected to the catcalls of live drill sergeants so cruel you won’t be able to hold back tears of shame. And while riders may need therapy after this one’s over, one thing’s for sure. They’ll look damn good on that shrink’s couch. 

In this inspired take on the popular Disney World favorite, guests gently cruise past smiling, happy faces from many different lands, finding common ground in a freezing, air-conditioned wonderland. And trust us, this time, you’ll neverget the jingle out of your head! 

It’s a world of food courts, of fake stone floors 
Yankee Candle kiosks and sunglass stores
Find a spa, get a tan
All while corn dog in hand
It’s a mall world after all… 

Bumping along a Thunder River or Bamboo Shoot is one thing, but there’s never been a ride down the rapids like this. Guests are sent careening down a raging torrent of thick, brown flash-flood water, obliterating what was once a working freeway. Hear the shocked screams of evening commuters stranded at convenience stores. Watch as ratings-desperate news reporters reinforce the importance of viewers staying out of the water even as they stand waist-deep in it. Experience the unforgettable, weeks-long, lingering aroma of sewage, and the humiliation of seeing your own mildew-soaked furniture on the sidewalk. It’s a Houston experience not to be missed! 

Remember the simple pleasures of yesteryear, tooling around aimlessly in a guide-track-bound ersatz antique taxi? Experience those days again but with a modern twist. Crawl through a morning commute complete with gridlocked traffic, massive road construction, potholes, stalled cars, angry people flipping you off, and drivers tweeting about breakfast as they drift into your lane. And while the taxi rides of yore ended all too quickly, this one lasts at least an hour and comes with complimentary Xanax.

Perennially on the drawing boards and under sporadic construction since 2001, this theme-park favorite (former name: the Wham Bam Tram) will be a sleek, 21st-century way to get around. Or so we’ve been led to believe. Unlike Astroworld’s old 610 Limited, this won’t be some boring, leisurely trip through the East Texas thicket. No, you can expect screeching stops to avoid pedestrians and drivers making wrong turns, odd conversations with colorful fare-jumpers, and the joy of finding yourself in a car either full of blue scrubs or hauntingly empty for hours at a time. Should be fun. Or again, that’s what they tell us.  

Sure, there’s less culture than a pot of Yoplait, but if it’s a dystopic fantasyland you’re after, don’t miss this whirlwind, dizzying journey through society based on the three-year-old website. Escape to a world far, far, far away from Houston, where life is a press release and every party’s more glittering than the last. But make sure to keep your BS Blaster™ handy—you just never know which of the same 50 socialites you’ll meet around every corner! 

Okay, this is not a joke. We want it back. Make that happen, theme park people!

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