I've been attending Haunts around SoCal for years, and I remember seeing my first sliders, easily ten years ago. I was fascinated! And terrified. How the hell did that guy stop just short of crashing through me?! Totally impressed!
This past Wednesday, I was given the opportunity to check out The Queen Mary's Dark Harbor for their event, Sliders Unite: Breaking the Stigma and I was blown away!
The show started with two silvery people spinning inside a giant hoop. I've seen videos of this style of performances before, but not with two people in the hoop at once, so witnessing it in person was excellent! Up next, the Sliders started their show with a group slide, one after another speeding in our direction, always stopping just short of the crowd. I love that, the whole "is this gonna be the time they don't stop?" This really is a skill, and watching it is a great scare! I've never felt like I was in danger when watching Sliders come speeding my direction; combine this skill with some of the best horror makeup and costumes I've seen, and it's truly a spectacle to behold.
Up next, the bar came out, looking to give the Sliders about two feet of clearance, and one by one, here they all came! Once everyone had their turn, the bar was dropped to eighteen inches, and the Sliders came at us again! One of my favorite things to see is when you can see the sparks from their metal pads - it's a total rush! One more bar drop, now down to twelve inches of clearance! As the Sliders dive under, some face first, some dropping to their knees and bending backwards (was I ever that flexible?!), some spinning as they maneuver under the bar, I'm impressed, this is worlds beyond what I first witnessed so many years ago! Next up, the Bunny Hop! The bar is dropped again, almost to the ground; now the Sliders must leap about five inches WHILE sliding. Considering that the bulk of the muscles used to jump are in your lower legs, seeing them jump the bar while on theirs knees is impressive, to say the least.
Now, for the reason we're all here...time to break some records! Last year, a Slider jumped six Sliders laying on the ground! Pretty damned impressive right? This year, they're going for seven bodies! They started with a few practice runs over four, five, then the record six....then it was time...a seventh body joined the group on the ground! The Sliders stepped up, assessed the situation, then he was off! The crowd seemed equal parts holding their breath and screams of cheering him on...
The run, the slide, the jump, one two three four five six...SEVEN BODIES! Then a second Slider came up; another success!
Wait, what's this?! Another body? No way!
Eight bodies? You have to be joking!
Slider takes off, slides, and eight bodies later he lands, surrounded by cheers and high fives from fellow Sliders!
I have so much respect for these teams, watching them is an awesome rush!
Many thanks to The Queen Mary's staff, and Tori, for the invite and chance to cover this, it was a well spent Thursday evening! And to the scarer that called out to his partner "Get the purple haired girl", and his partner that "got the purple haired girl", well played, your skill at picking out marks is excellent! Much love Queen Mary! Until next year!