I was freelancing here and my work partner said, “Today is the day that the five millionth rider is going to win two tickets to anywhere in the world. We should go.” It was late fall and I was whining a lot about how cold it was. We rode the Ferris wheel but we weren’t the winners, so we decided to ride again. As soon as we cleared the turnstile a confetti gun went off. I thought my friend had won, but it was me. The Navy Pier dignitaries and singers were there, and so was Ronald McDonald–McDonald’s sponsors the Ferris wheel. Well, I’m really afraid of clowns, and of Ronald McDonald in particular. I’d had a previous job where I had to wrap Ronald McDonald dolls, and I couldn’t have them behind me–I had to have them in front of me where I could watch them at all times. This dignitary comes up and says, “You’re going to do the victory ride with Ronald McDonald,” and I said, “I’m not getting on this Ferris wheel with that clown thing,” so he came with me too. I made Ronald sit on the other side of the car. In addition to the tickets, I won a year’s supply of Big Macs. But, of course, I’m also a vegetarian! I ended up going to Japan and had a terrific time. I did eat at McDonald’s a few times there–but I ate fish.

–Betsy Housand, computer graphics designer