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AWOL in Universal Studios

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After covering Wicked Wednesday, I realized that I didn't have to work until later that night. The PR person had said, "Just go wherever you want." I think she meant within the stage area, but I thought I'd wander around a little. The last time I went to Universal Studios they had just gotten Jaws, and they were still doing an avalanche with big cheesy-looking styrofoam boulders.

I went on "Back to the Future" which had me giggling hysterically. It's one of those 'Star Wars" type simulation rides. It had a ridiculously long lead-in; we might as well have just watched the movie again. I guess they just wanted to store us somewhere air-conditioned while we waited. It was a seriously great ride - lots of swoops and dips, and we got swallowed by a giant dinosaur. It was hilarious. I walked around the park, taking photos, then I thought, "What the hell!" And got on the tram.

Furries. I can't stop thinking about them now. I'm a bad person.

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And I thought this said PORNucopolis. What am I even doing in a family park?

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And this looks like a big, fluffy pink power drill.

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Right after I took these pics I received my invitation to the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence's Superhero Fetish Ball. There is no such thing as a coincidence.

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Look, Malingering, it's your happy place. You can sit here with no danger of a foul ball while bad fashion from all around the globe parades right before you. Remember the Twilight Zone where Roddy McDowell is in a weird little house on Mars, and then he realizes he is in a zoo? This could be "Malingering: In her natural habitat."

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Guess which kid is going to grow up to be a model?

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See what I mean? Kids in shark's jaws. It just never gets old.

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This Fievel mouse thing was messing with the dads in that annoying-mime kind of way and the dads were getting really pissed. But before I could witness the spectacular mouse throw-down I was waiting for, they hopped on their little trolley and made a break for it.

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I don't think she's gonna get the pumpkin. This is what I feel like when I play basketball.

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They had a nice splash zone for the kids

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On the tram, they have turned the 6-Million Dollar Man into the Mummy, and the Red Sea, well, there was just a little boat on the water. There were a lot of explosions, and things on fire, which I really like. But we were getting splashed with water an awful lot, which is nice in the heat but not so good for the camera. At one point these little Jurassic Park dinosaurs popped up out of the bushes and one spit at me with super-soaker strength, squirting me right in the face. I was about to shout, "Oh my God! I just took a money shot from a velociraptor!" But little children were staring at me, so I bit my tongue.

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This is what making movies is really like.

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Animal House

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The Bates Motel with Whoville in the background.

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And here is Wisteria Lane

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Just 3 hours later, they had already turned the Wicked stage back into the Blues Brothers stage.

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(Where to sit on the tram: The left side is best for viewing most things, especially the Tokyo Drift cars, but the right side is better for Jaws and King Kong. Some of the effects work better depending on your tram car. The giant King Kong only menaces car 1 and 3, The Tokyo cars feel like they are going to crash into cars 2 and 3. Cars 2 and 3 on the left are best for the earthquake effect of the collapsing ceiling and crashing subway car.)

(Photos byElise Thompsonfor LAist)