Friday, March 29, 2013

What are you going to do next!?!

“You’ve just defeated the Evil Empire. What are you going to do next!?!” “I’m going to that really hot place where you pay a lot of money to stand in line!” “Oh you mean Disneyland?” “That’s what I said.”

I’m sitting in my bed / office typing up some paper work for my soon to be completed mortgage, and watching Jim Gaffigan’s stand up.

“So we took our kids to Disneyland. Disneyland for parents, well, imagine standing in line . . . at the DMV . . . on the sun.” “The best ride? The air conditioned bus ride back to the hotel.”

I have spent a disproportional amount of my parenthood plotting Disneyland avoidance. Unfortunately for me, my extended family loves the Magic Kingdom and there was a time when we went once a year.

I can’t say exactly what it is about Disney and Mickey and Cartoon Fairy Tale Princesses that make my skin crawl and sweat run down my face. There is a component of an enormous corporate conglomerate espousing to be the standard of family values. (My mind jumps to Big Oil promoting their excellent job in environmentalism or Tobacco recruiting physicians to light up. Look! We are the good guys now give up more of your money!) Doesn’t Disneyland remind of the stories where an idealistic community is built just to lure na├»ve travelers into a stew pot where they will be boiled alive?  

Then there is my irritation at people in general and a low tolerance for standing in line or spending all day at an activity that is mind-numbingly boring while paying a ridiculous sum for the privilege to do so.  Compile that with the simple minded, anorexic, role models for little girls and I think you get my meaning.

And now, as if they hadn’t seeped into enough aspects of life, they are attempting to acquire all other aspects of entertainment. Then they slap on mouse ears and have teenagers walk around the park dressed as characters that were once powerful, complex or at least creative and are now just pathetic.

So let us see Dr. Seuss, The Muppets, Marvel Comics and Star Wars all plasticized. They even applied to trademark “Seal Team Six.” (The special-forces group responsible for taking out Ben Laden.) So now there will be elite forces repelling down the facade of the castle? Will they do a little song and dance when they hit the ground or perhaps a Vaudeville sketch? Will that become part of the Seals official training?

What’s next? The US senate? Actually, in that case, plasticized ridiculous may be an improvement. What else? A copy-write to the Bible? The seven dwarfs can act out Moses and the parting of the red sea? Perhaps they will buy all of Spain or the right to package all cheese products in the US.

Then there is the entire line of Disney themed events including wedding and, probably not as popular, funerals.
How about a Disney themed Church service? Combine two things I have no tolerance for but I’ll bet it would increase church attendance. “Your church may have pot lucks and an awesome gym but I bet you don’t have the Ten Commandments Disney boat ride.  Come on over and bring the kids. Mickey is going to talk about eternal damnation.”


So far, in two of my jobs, we’ve had a presentation involving the Disney Institute. (The business aspect of Disney that has built a mini empire telling other businesses what they are doing wrong.) At least on this point I can’t argue.  Disney has a marketing machine and business structure that have made the upper Disney echelon a boat load of money.

You know that game little girls play? What princess would you be? For me, that’s easy, Ursula the Sea Witch.  Be a female that can kick some butt instead of wating around sitting on one.  

At least they haven’t ruined Harry Potter yet.  Oh wait, Universal took care of that.


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