Cringeworthy 2.0 "Rock City"

 Foot in Mouth Disease.

The time: Year and a half ago.

The place: Adairsville, Ga.

Outcome: You know what? I'm not going to feel bad about this one anymore.
                Not worth the price of admission.

There is a place in Chattanooga, Tennessee called Rock City.
It reigns supreme among all tourist traps and cheesy roadside attractions. Even Wall Drug of South Dakota pays tribute to this Kingdom of Kitsch.

Approximately 900 barns in the midwest and southeast U.S have been painted with advertisements beckoning people to see for themselves the glorious wonders of Rock City.
Seven states and they're hinting that it's the best thing ever??
We were living in rural northwest Georgia when we finally heeded the siren call of the Rock City Barns.
Young and bored, the decision to make the hour drive into Chattanooga was an easy one.
The barns had promised fantastic sights, and we eagerly anticipated experiencing the amazing Rock City for ourselves. 

However, upon entering the park we were overwhelmed with the creepy trying-to-be-Disney-but-can't-quite-pull-it-off-because-of-low-production-quality vibes.
All this, but with a scratchy "fairytale" soundtrack playing.
Granted, Look-Out Mountain was appropriately scenic, the gardens were nice, and the cheesiness of the "Enchanted Trail" was good for a laugh. But there was something not quite right about the fake cave at the end of the trail, innocently called "Fairyland Caverns".
Abandon hope all ye who enter here.
In this instance I think a few pictures should suffice to convey the feelings of dread and disgust that we felt, regarding the creepy paper mache Mother Goose abominations that loomed within the caverns.
Legend has it that the souls of lost children are trapped within the figurines.
Fortunately we escaped with our souls intact, and laughed about the corniness of Rock City for the rest of the weekend.

The Cringe

On Monday, myself and a co-worker were driving around together supervising. Let's call him "Chip".
Inevitably, Chip asks the obligatory "do anything fun this weekend?" question. And naturally I launch into a witty monologue, lampooning every ridiculous aspect about Rock City I could think of. The deer park with no deer, creepy dwarves, and chintzy exhibits. Nothing was safe.
Seriously, where are all the deer?
Finally, after five or ten minutes, (it may have been longer, my self-absorption causes me to occasionally blank out), I noticed that Chip wasn't sharing my enthusiasm for bashing Rock City, so I quiet down and ask if he's ever been there.

"Yeah. In fact, I proposed to my wife there."

"Are you serious?"

"Yeah, she loved it."

"Well, you probably did it in a quiet romantic spot or something, huh?"

"Nope, I got down on one knee on top of Look-Out Mountain. There was a pretty good crowd of people."

"Wow. Well, um, I guess whatever makes her happy."

Ugh. I suck.

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