What Goes On At Sea World At Night?

Sea World, one of nation’s top destinations, is known for being one of the heaviest trafficked, family friendly places. But not when the gates close at night, the park transforms.

Over on Reddit there’s an ongoing Q & A with “hghost,” a graveyard worker at Sea World. Here is a cross section of some of the best questions posed by users and answered by the worker. Note, quotes are taken verbatim.

Q: What is your job? Security? looking after the animals?
A: The official title is “night ops” basically janitorial work.

Q: Any crazy, aquatic tales of the night life? Or is it just creepy? Its creepy that’s for sure.
A: At about sunrise the dolphins and whales go crazy. Every night at about the same time the dogs will wake up and start barking and howling. Same with the sea lions

Q: Do you know why?
A: From what I know of the whales and dolphins is that they don’t sleep. Unlike us, they have to think of breathing to actually breathe. So every morning they, like most of us, are well rested and have energy to burn. As for the dogs, I’m not sure. That’s what dogs do I suppose.Q: Are those outdoor penguins kept outside overnight? If so, are they as awesome at night as they are during the day? Or are they mostly sleeping? When I was there last, I saw them getting tummy rubs from an employee and had I recorded it, it probably would have been worth like a million karma.
A: They’re out all night in their exhibit usually sleeping. Every so often there’s one or two pulling an all mightier walking around their exhibit quietly. At about 530 or 6 every morning they start to wake up and sound like they’re singing to each other. One will start it and then the others repeat. Reminds me of the music numbers in happy feet.

Q: Do you bond with Shamu? Can you put in a good word with him for me?
A: The whales as well as some other animals learn to recognize you and will usually come up and greet you or try to “talk” to you. He’s too big of a star. Maybe Dolly or O.p

Q: What’s the worst incident that you’ve had to deal with?
A: Having trash bags rip spilling trash all over the place including on my clothes. Smells bad

Q: Do you take dates to Sea World or can you not stand the place?
A: Yeah, I have in the past. Its a fun place, I enjoy it there so I like to go on my time off usually. I like the educational aspect of the park. Manta is amazing too. So that also helps…

Q: Dude how creepy is it by the tanks w/ no lights? Oh my god, just thinking about being by a shark tank in the dark just makes me want to cry!
A: Yeah the creepiest tank to be by is the killer whale one. Because down in the under water viewing it is near pitch black darkness and all you can see is the big white spot of the killer whales “eye patch” swim by slowly as it watches you. The sharks that I see aren’t so bad. I think its just the massive size of the whale.

Q: What’s your favorite of the animals you encounter at work? Why?
A: I’d probably have to go with the dolphins, because they never sleep so tend to watch us work when we’re around their tank. They will learn to recognize what you look like and come up and greet you and follow you around their tank. Here are some watching me sweep up. They’re fascinated by a lot

Q: Do you ever come across animals that just up and die in the middle of the night, and need to fish them out, or are the sickly ones identified well enough in advance that you don’t end up with floaters?
A: I personally haven’t but each of the main animals get full medical exams and vitamins and all that daily so they are kept under close watch. If they’re looking sick they go to the veterinary area of the park

Q: Are you ever afraid you’ll get murdered there in a Scooby-Dooesque manner?
A: No because I know creepy Mr Jenkins wanders around in his Bigfoot costume. There are parts I try to avoid when the lights get shut of and the parts of the park turn to near pitch black.

Top 5 ways to annoy your airplane seatmate

5 ways to annoy your airplane seatmate gadling planeOver on Reddit earlier this month, there was a fascinating and hysterical story written by someone who was on an airplane with two seemingly horrible passengers. In fact, he ended up seated directly in between them [Note: The photo to the right is not the author of the Reddit post]. It seems that a mother (on crutches, mind you) boarded the plane with her young son. Rather than move their seats so that the mother and child could sit together, these two women argued that they have “flying issues” and needed to remain in their assigned seats. It turns out that they are sisters and, according to the Reddit user, are quite curmudgeonly. In fact, when he tried to assist with the situation, he was tersely told to mind his own business. After takeoff, the Reddit user and the woman seated next to him traded their seats with the mother and child. Now, however, our intrepid storyteller is smack dab in the middle of the two women who started this whole kerfuffle. Which leads us to his query: “What can i do to make their flight as akward as possible” [sic] We feel compelled to chime in. What exactly are the five best ways to annoy your airplane seatmate?5. Total armrest domination
It actually appears as if the Reddit user has already employed this classic maneuver. We’ve covered middle seat etiquette before and don’t believe that he’s doing anything wrong by controlling both armrests. It’s his birthright. But that doesn’t make it any less annoying to the ladies on either side of him.

4. The art of conversation
It’s time to get chatty. Discuss the weather. Talk about the reason for your trip. Ask your neighbors if they think the rash on your lower back looks abnormal. Whatever you do, keep talking. Are they ignoring you by working on their computers or reading newspapers? Don’t let that stop you. Keep chatting away, even if no one is listening.

3. Something smells fishy
Who doesn’t like tuna fish sandwiches? Everyone seated around you on the plane, that’s who. If you really want to bother your seatmates, eat something offensive. With fewer airlines offering free meals, you will need to plan ahead and pack that anchovy and bleu cheese sandwich yourself.

2. Bathroom breaks
Ask the flight attendant for extra water. After all, you need to stay hydrated on planes. Sadly, though, you can never really own water. You just kind of rent it. Asking to use the bathroom once on a flight is expected. Getting up twice isn’t too far-fetched. After your sixth trip to the head, however, you’re seatmate will be ready to stand up and scream. Which is helpful, since you’ll be able to get into the aisle again for your seventh bathroom run.

1. Airsick
There may be nothing worse than traveling next to a sick passenger. Feel free to get creative in how you portray your illness. You can go with the common cold and simply sneeze every 1-3 minutes. The sore throat is a classic and allows you to go with the excruciatingly annoying consistent throat clearing maneuver. To get the most bang for your buck, however, you’ll want to go full vomit. Work up to it, though. Start by talking about how you feel nauseous. No one likes hearing about a stranger’s stomach issues. Go to the bathroom with an excessive sense of urgency. Place your hand over your mouth, on your stomach, or on your buttocks. Covertly fake some gurgling noises. Now, depending on how committed you are to this, you can go all in. Vomit into the airsickness bag (either for real or sneakily dump some airport Sbarro’s lasagna in there). Do not miss the bag. Remember that you’re trying to annoy the passengers, not create extra work for the flight crew.

What did we miss? Surely there are more ways to annoy your seatmates. Let us know in the comments. We sure hope that the Reddit user came up with something good. Oh, and the next time you have the chance to help a passenger by switching seats or assisting them with a bag, just do it. It makes the world – or at least your flight – a better place.

[via @legalnomads]

Photo by Flickr user BJ Carter.

Video of the Day – Make your travel photos Hollywood-worthy

Vacation photos can sometimes be disappointing, or at very least, a little less ‘epic’ than how you remembered them. But as Youtube user postjhb shows us in today’s Video of the Day, all it takes to turn those summer vacation stills into moving masterpieces is a Photoshop tutorial and a little creative energy.

If you need some inspiration for this summer’s big getaway, hit play & check out postjhb’s technique. It boils down to 4 simple steps; taking two good photos (one with the subject & one without), extracting the subject from the background in Photoshop, and then using a video editor to cause the two layers to move against each other. The full process is outlined here.

If that’s a little too complicated, try some of Gadling’s easy Travel Photo Tips so that you’re all ready to shoot like a pro as this summer kicks off! If you already have a shot (or video) you’re proud of, submit it to Gadling’s Flickr Pool or leave a comment below & it could be our next Photo/Video of the Day!

Video: Catching a moving train in Burma

A Reddit user submitted this video of people catching a moving train in Yangon, Burma. Note that the train doesn’t actually *stop* in the station. The first woman gets an assist from a train employee as well as a man on the ground, who then has to run down the platform – in flipflops, no less – and catch the train with several bags to carry before it leaves the station. The video uploader explains that the train was running two hours late and had no time to stop, and the man had seven bags to get onto the train in less than a minute.

Imagine Amtrak (or even your local commuter train) adopting this new policy for late trains. Think you are intrepid enough to jump on a moving train with luggage?

Photo of the Day (9.21.10)

Friendly photo subject, or dangerous primate? Most animal experts would gladly tell you that a monkey bearing its teeth is trying to communicate signs of aggression, no matter just how cute the aggression may be. However, this picture was one of those frames taken at exactly the right moment. Flickr user hsemock caught this sleepy monkey at the end of a yawn and walked away (unscathed) with a great portrait.

Although it may appear that the subject is British, this chance encounter actually took place while the photographer was trekking through the jungles of Indonesia.

Do you have photos of furry friends from around the globe? Share them with us! Submit to the Gadling Flickr Pool and it could be our next Photo of the Day.