Tuesday, June 14, 2005

A Treatise on Disney World and the American Nightmare: Part 1

I just got back from a weekend in Disney World and I think my hatred for humanity, which had been cooling as of late, has been re-affirmed. Ok ok, so it was for my nephew's third birthday and he had a smashing good time. I also went to Disney World as a young tike and, like my nephew, had some wholesome consumer-iffic good times. It was good to see him happy -- when he's old enough to know better and he still wants to go, that's when I'm going to kick the ever-loving shit out of him. For now I have this blog so let's bring on the hate...

I can't put my finger on any one thing that bothered me. I guess it started once we left the airport and started driving out into the wetlands (what's left of them) of central Florida -- now they're pretty much a patchwork of ugly "just-add-water" communities interspersed with your typical "SuperTarget/Macaroni Grill/Home Expo" shit-strips. Viva la Variety! These "shit-strips", if you will, are definitely going to be the subject of another treatise - and I don't care if nobody's reading this fucking thing. There are too many blogs out there anyway.

But I digress. Maybe it was the two teenaged daughters and their grown mother in matching outfits riding on my bus to the Magic Kingdom - they had skin-tight striped terrycloth shorts and shirts that showed off their Michelin Man curves. The mother was fanning herself with a copy of the park map while her two daughters were glued to the bus' closed-circuit broadcast of "Insert Inane Disney Cartoon Movie Here."

I saw them earlier that morning at the breakfast buffet at the Animal Kingdom Resort. Their waiter, and mine, was a slight, very dark, distinguished-looking man who hailed from South Africa. His eyes twinkled with kindness, deep with the knowledge of things that I will never know, some good and some undoubtedly very bad. I wondered what it was like for him to run back and forth all day from kitchen to table bringing serving after serving of food to fat Americans who were long past the point of satiety. I wonder if he had ever seen so much food consumed in one sitting by one person in his life? I wonder if he had the ability to rise above the bitterness and disgust that was bubbling up from the pit of my own stomach? I guess he did.

Author's note: I never like to make fun of people for their short-comings or their vices, God knows I have my share. But when a person's bad habits affect other people, it really pisses me off (again, another essay for another time). Suffice it to say that your kids are supposed to be the ones who get right what you got wrong. By the time you have them you've already had the interior dialogue with yourself, "Ok, I fucked up here, and here, and there. Ok, I am going to steer my kids away from that. I am going to tell them not to smoke, I am not going to let them eat shitty foods, I am going to encourage them to read instead of watching E! television." This women apparently said to herself, "Hey! I weigh as much as a small star, I constantly feel like shit and I am probably not going to see 65. Works for me! Who needs Dr. Spock telling me what to do? I got Mr. Pibb. Bottom line, if you are fat so be it - you make your own choices. If your kids are fat, you are doing something wrong and in a perfect world you would be charged with negligence."

Maybe it was the swarm of those stupid "Rascal" fold-away scooters buzzing around the walkways, their morbidly obese self-entitled drivers sending people scrambling for cover behind the plastic mesas of "Frontierland." There's no such thing as personal space at Disney World. If you are an asshole like me, then you know that things are more comfy when people generally keep their distance. Well that shit don't fly in the zone, people get all up in your grill at Disney World. It was as hot as the surface of the Sun at the park yet people would still push you and maul you so they could get a couple of steps ahead of you on the Peter Pan ride. Ok buddy, you win. To celebrate you can head over to Fake Epcot Jamaica and have some underpaid lady make corn rows out of your ass hair.

More thoughts and the final earth-shattering conclusion after these messages...