The veloci-rapture: Dinosaur enthusiasts prep for the coming of ‘Jurassic Park 3D’

By Chris Peralta

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So here I am, sitting in the middle of the Oakland Center with my copy of  “The Ultimate Book of Dinosaurs” and I’m wondering why a Carcharodontosaurus is on the cover instead of a T-Rex. However, I’m not wondering what I’ll be doing on the night of April 5.

I’ll be seeing Spielberg’s “Jurassic Park 3D.”

Don’t go the “They’re just re-hashing the old stuff to get more of your money” route, because I’ve been there. I said the same thing when “Titanic 3D,” “Finding Nemo 3D” and “Star Wars: Episode 1: The Phantom Menace 3D” were released last year.

But “Jurassic Park” and I have history.

You see, when I was a young boy at the age of three, my parents wanted to pull a prank on me. They thought that it would be funny to take me to see “Jurassic Park,” grab a large popcorn, sit back and enjoy watching my reactions to Velociraptors and a T-Rex hunting pre-teens and archaeologists.

But oh, how they thought wrong.

I walked out of that theater grinning instead of trembling. I still remember the look on my mom’s face, a look that said: “What kind of child are you?”

She and my father forgot that toddlers don’t feel fear. Ever. And that lack of fear resulted in my cheering for the dinosaurs to eat all of the people. When the movie was over, I had a smile on my face but I was just a little upset that not all of the people were eaten.

As I grew older my love of dinosaurs grew to enormous lengths. I had all of the “Jurassic Park” movies and I watched them every weekend. Science projects were based on dinosaurs. I had the whole “The Lost World: Jurassic Park” playset — you know, the one with the big RV from the movie and a tiny baby T-rex with a splint on its leg. I had rows of dinosaur books, and my closet was full of dinosaur clothes.

If that wasn’t bad enough, I got to the point in my childhood where I made dinosaur noises, at home and in public. That’s right, back in the day I sat in front of my TV pressing the rewind button again and again, making sure that I got the calls of the T-Rex and Velociraptor perfectly.

I was basically the dinosaur version of the people who call themselves “birders.”

Now, I want you to picture a kid running around his backyard with a piece of grilled chicken in his mouth and his arms in a T-Rex position, waving his head to the left and to the right as he chewed, stopping only  to roar at the squirrels that were hanging on the telephone wires.

I did that until I developed shame at the age of 12.

Having watched “Jurassic Park” as an adult, I have realized that I had no idea what the movie was about when I was a kid. The island wasn’t meant to feed people to dinosaurs in the first place, the guy with the Barbasol tries to steal the dinosaur DNA, and I’m pretty sure that I missed the fact that Samuel L. Jackson stars in it.

Another thing, the Velociraptors in “Jurassic Park” aren’t Velociraptors at all. They may behave the same way, but the dinosaurs depicted are Deinonychuses. I guess that Spielberg didn’t think that Deinonychus rolls off the tongue the same way that Velociraptor does.

That being said, I wouldn’t change a thing when it comes to my childhood. Even with the relatively new feeling of shame I still fully embrace my dinosaur ways. Every now and then while I’m driving I’ll scream at people in T-Rex and not everyone can say: “I love you” in Velociraptor/Deinonychus.

So on the night of April 5, I’ll be at the movie theater with my friends or with a date. Because let’s be honest, nothing is more attractive or appealing than a guy/girl who appreciates the best movie of all time.

 

Contact Staff Intern Chris Peralta via email at [email protected]