Thursday, May 2, 2024

16 Years and Still Around! - "Jungle is 101!"

Greetings, Jungle-teers!

It has been but a brief 16 years or so since this blog first left the dock.

Much has happened since then, no?

Happy to report this old skipper is still adventuring.  Actually headed to Walt Disney World in June.  Perhaps a post or two may arise from this sojourn to our sister Park(s) to the East.

I miss you all terribly, though the warm confines of the Jungle are always here for company. 

It is 2024, and we are 40 years out from the time when I first set foot on stage as a Cast Member.  If you scroll on back through the entries in this blog, you will get a good glimpse into the story.  Here's a link to one of the first entries: The Jungle Cruise - All Downhill From There

My thoughts today, as always, go out to my three (3) loyal readers -- bless each of you [Note: sadly, I lost Mom as a reader a while back, though she will ever live on in this old West-Sider's heart!].  Here's hoping that you are still reliving fond memories of the past while savoring the challenge and promise of the future.

I guess there must be a lot of imagination left in the world, because the Park sure has changed.  Hardly anything has been left untouched, from the Jungle, to the Rivers of America, to Main Street, to the Matterhorn - even the shadeless wonder that is Toontown.  Speaking of Toontown, an area that has been shellacked a time or two in this blog, I'll give them Mickey & Minnie's Runaway Railroad as something "new" that is actually quite well done, from its queue all the way through to the end of the attraction.  I warn you not to picture the song, "Nothing Can Stop Us Now," in your mind's ear---oops!  Now you've done it haven't you?  I hope you enjoy listening to that little diddy for the next hour, as it is as hard to shed from one's brain as a Mekong tapeworm from your digestive tract.  Sorry for that, but to be fair, I just did it to myself, too.

Well, over here at "Jungle is 101," we'll have to move on at this point, because...Nothing Can Stop Us Now!

Keep backsiding into water, my friends!!


Monday, October 10, 2022

Disneyland - The Skyway

Today Jungle-teers we take a glimpse back (and up) at the Skyway. 

I have posted before about this attraction. Who hasn’t, really?

I thought I would share a few shots from various angles to help those who never experienced it get a feel for its location within the Park. 

If you have ever had your path from Fantasyland to Tomorrowland blocked by a parade traveling from Small World down Matterhorn way (or from Main Street heading back to the Small World gate), your options for getting over the parade route are limited to pedestrian crossings along the way, where you wait for a gap in the parade and a rope drop from a friendly Cast Member to herd past with hundreds of your fellow guests. 

Ah, but there was a time when you could head up to the Skyway station in either Fantasyland or Tomorrowland and climb aboard this aerial tramway to glide above the parade and through the majestic Matterhorn to your destination.  You also were treated to a unique view of the parade as you drifted over it. 

The attraction also was beautiful to watch from the ground. Its colorful buckets or gondolas floated in the background over a busy Fantasyland, Matterhorn Way, Submarine Voyage lagoon, and Tomorrowland (with the Monorail, Tomorrowland Terrace — aka Coke Terrace in the 1980s—the Peoplemover, the Autopia, the Mod Hatter and America Sings in close proximity). Other guests would wave down at you as they drifted past.  Sometimes you would see your friends or family members above and would make your way ahead of them on foot to connect with them at the station at either end of the Skyway’s sturdy steel cable. 

It was a pleasing, satisfying sight.  Pictures and videos of the attraction are helpful, but do not do it justice when compared to seeing it live, in person, in glorious 3-D. There was something about its motion, swaying and rocking slightly as it noiselessly passed, its buckets going in opposite directions, that was calming as well as exhilarating.  It helped to reflect the movement, color, joy, transcendency, togetherness, and even the adventuresome spirit of the Disneyland experience in a simple, albeit essentially mechanical, fashion. 

It still gives me butterflies. 

As with the entirety of the Park, it offered both common and individualized experiences simultaneously.  You would ride it with friends or family and enjoy a cozy camaraderie as the cable lifted all of you out of the station and up and over each support tower.  Likewise, each person had their own unique view from their small corner of the bucket. 

This could be quite dramatic for those not keen on heights.  Despite knowing you were safely within the confines of the Magic Kingdom, part of your subconscious could not help but gently remind your rational side that you were dangling from a wire high enough above the ground to expose you to serious if not permanent damage—really permanent—should things somehow become less Sky and more Way. 

This little drama played out in the background, until the Park itself, the breeze, the smells of popcorn, diesel, and chlorine, the mists of alpine waterfalls, the brightness of the sun or the brilliance of twinkling lights after dark, the cool confines of the Matterhorn—and the screams and laughter of those challenging its icy slopes, the sparkling, bubbling clearer-than-clear waters of the Submarine Voyage, the yellow-clad vendors with enormous, primary-colored handfuls of Mickey-eared balloons spinning and bound to earth by only the thinnest of red string, the muffled noise of the crowd below, the otherworldly roars of “Harold” the Yeti, the drumbeat and guitar riffs from the rising stage of Tomorrowland Terrace, the distant and rhythmic tick-tock of the Small World clock, the competing whistles of the Disneyland Railroad and the stately, unseen Mark Twain—somewhere out yonder in Frontierland, the smiles, the teasing, the satisfied and carefree looks of those riding with you, the pure experience and Skyway-ness of it all, collectively  carried your conscious self up, up, up into that moment—that joy—of being present and … floating.  Swaying. Gliding. 

At Disneyland, the Skyway and others are called Attractions for a reason. 

Keep relieving fond memories of the past and savoring the challenge and promise of the future, my dear friends!


Friday, October 7, 2022

A Stirring, Deep in the Jungle

Oh thank heavens you found me.

It feels as though I’ve been wandering through this jungle for years. 

I’ve used up the last of the food we carted in with us. 

The old tent is torn and dripping. Our vehicle is out of fuel and overturned. 

I cannot seem to locate my compass.

Very disoriented.

I’m far up river.

The jungle, once familiar, chokes and surrounds me — almost alien, unforgiving — forming a verdant fog of dense growth that is ever changing.

The generator is long dead. No way to power up the wireless and connect through the ether to the world I left behind at the dock. 

Even the local villagers, who were so friendly and welcoming, appear to have moved on and are nowhere to be seen.

My old friend Trader Sam also left sometime ago.

Last I heard he was slinging drinks at a bar he opened at the outskirts of civilization, along the edge of the forest.  

Poor Sam. He seemed melancholy when he left. 

His misty eyes no longer as fire-filled and purposeful. 

He handed me one of his last shrunken heads and disappeared into the teeming dampness.

Landmarks that I knew well have been reclaimed by the jungle, have sunk, or become unrecognizable.

A skull canoe marked a key turn in the river and I cannot find it anywhere. The bends all look the same. 

And there are a LOT of monkeys hanging around—-more than I can ever recall seeing in these parts.

Wait a minute —- is that a gift shop???



P.S. To any of my four (4) readers who may still be out there: I’ve missed you terribly!

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Oh, for a drink at Trader Sam’s...

Greetings, Jungleteers!

I dug out my old Blogger account access and have taken a few moments to jot down some thoughts about the Park.  My first thought as I sit behind the old Royal typewriter here by the dock is that it has been a very long time since I’ve held an icy tiki drink from old Trader Sam’s.
The above photo was taken in June 2018, and a few things have happened since then. You may have noticed.
I’m not sure I could’ve imagined Disneyland shutting down for more than a few days, yet here we are.
An empty Park.
Do not get me wrong, I always enjoyed the Park when it was empty and I either came on for an early morning shift or was walking out after a closing shift.
But MONTHS of emptiness?
Not a single guest since some time in March?
This is strange.
Now we get word that it will open again In time for its birthday on July 17.
I raise a glass to that.
If I were nostalgic for the good old days when I first began putting together this little blog over a decade ago, I am not sure how to begin to describe my feelings today.
I am even more grateful to have been able to experience Disneyland with thousands and thousands of people around me, no face mask in sight.
We are social creatures. The Park was meant to be a place where young and old could enjoy it together.
It was meant to evoke an individual response, while allowing guests to also share the experience with their friends and loved ones.
Aside from a carousel horse or perhaps an Autopia vehicle or Doombuggy, its Attractions were designed to move people as groups.
It is difficult to remain socially distant on a Jungle boat during peak summer months.
Perhaps a part of the appeal of the Jungle Cruise was the fact that the guests and the skipper were stuck in the boat together, having to face the wilds of the jungle with only each other.
As a skipper, I faced thousands and thousands of guests per day during the peak season, with every imaginable manner of virus and bacteria literally teeming aboard my craft.
At the unload position, my bare hand grasp the elbows of thousands and thousands of men, women and children as I help them to exit the boat.
The locker area backstage was shared and touched by thousands of cast members, as were the offices, break areas, Inn Betweens, vending machines, door handles, attraction control knobs, ropes and poles used for guest control during each and every parade or fireworks display, PA microphones in the queues and at the bow of our Jungle boats, .38 caliber guns we used to “scare” hippos away from our boats, handles of thousands of strollers that we moved from walkways to stroller parking areas, hundreds of thousands of scraps of paper or cups or food or diapers or other debris of every imaginable sort that we routinely picked up and threw away as part of our daily tasks in the interest of maintaining the Park and good “Show.”  Each and every one of these persona, surfaces, objects, tools, or things were encountered by us Cast Members without thought or care that we might be inviting our own doom.
That is how it should be.
If there is one thing I learned in the Jungle, it is that we move through a very dangerous world, and there’s always something around the corner that might represent danger.
There are no guarantees.
Sometimes we will fall ill.
Life itself may bring unexpected challenges, even bacteria, virus, or disease.
There are piranhas, Tse Tse flies, Headhunters, and much worse to be faced.
The trick is not to let fear prevent you from adventure and the joys of life!
For the world also has cures, healing, love, rebirth, strength, heroism, tenacity, togetherness, medicine  of all kinds, and laughter — one of the best medicines of all!
Here’s to reopening!
Here’s to some semblance of normalcy!
Make it a Mai Tai, Sam.
Make it a double!


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Veni, Vidi, Venti - Starbucks Crosses the Rubicon

Salutations and greetings!
It has been a while, no?
I have crept back to the old Royal typewriter after a year or so.
Darn! These keys are still sticking. Pardon the rust.
The jungle humidity is unkind to machinery.
Today's topic is the loss of the Market House and the rise of Starbucks on Main Street.
It is perhaps the most significant mermaid invasion of the Park since the Submarine Voyage made its debut.
The Market House gave itself up in dribs and drabs over time.
I remember in the late 1970s, early 1980's, there was a back room area of Market House that had a player-piano. It played old rolls of music for one, thin quarter, as I recall.
That room later became part of the Disneyana Shop and gallery (the circular-shaped room that had all the framed artwork displayed in it).
Of course, it is now old news that Mr. Dinglinger has given way to Starbucks.
Right in the middle of Main Street, U.S.A.
An authentic, turn-of-the-century coffee shop ---- from Seattle, Washington circa 1971.
I can hear the old party-line telephone call now:

Mama: "Mr. Dinglinger, is my daughter Annie got to your place yet? If she is, put her on, will ya? And tell her to hurry, because I'm startin' to get me a caffeine headache! Hello, Annie?"

Annie: "Yes, this is me, Mama."

Mama: "Will you ask Mr. Dinglinger if...wait a minute. Just hold the wire. Miss Flump? Auralee Flump? Will you please get off this line?! Now I know you're there, 'cause I hear your microwave going off in the background, and it sounds like it's a bit slow, too. (sound of Ms. Flump's phone hanging up). Hello, Annie?"

Annie: "Yes, I'm here. What did you want?"

Mama: "Ask Mr. Dinglinger what his price is today for a Grande Espresso Macchiato, extra foam, extra hot, with a half pump of vanilla."

Annie: "I already asked him, Mama. Two dollars, ninety-five cents."

Mama: "TWO DOLLARS AND NINETY-FIVE CENTS!!? Who does he think he is, Jesse James! Jing, this family's gonna break us yet! Your father payin' two hundred ninety dollars for an iPad mini! There goes a whole day's pay up in smoke! And what did he do last year? Went out and paid $299 dollars for a set of Beats by Dr. Dre, and now he wants an Espresso Macchiato at $2.95 a cup. I think he's lost his mind!"

Don't get me wrong. I enjoy a Venti iced coffee on an almost daily basis from my friends in the green or black aprons. They also have done a fairly tasteful job in laying out and decorating the Starbucks location on Main Street.
It hurts to lose another old, familiar friend to the march of "progress" and time.
Market House joins Plaza Gardens, the Mile Long Bar, the Tahitian Terrace, and the Plaza Pavilion in the Pantheon of "things that arent' here anymore" at the Park.
It still says "Market House" over the door.
There is still a pot-bellied stove.
A hand-cranked telephone can still be found along a wall inside.
Yet the gem that was the Market House has been quietly lifted from guests' proverbial trove of available attractions and experiences within the Park, never to return.
We as guests are all diminished by its passing.
Of course, a good cup of coffee IS a welcome addition to Disneyland.
The Park has suffered for quite a while from horribly bad available coffee fare. I am a long-suffering consumer of inferior Disneyland coffee, as both Cast Member and guest, and can ably attest to the quantum leap forward that Starbucks brings within the berm in respect to coffee quality.
I am also heartened by the results of the obvious efforts to try to seamlessly meld this well-known brand into the architectural landscape of Main Street.
Some things are inevitable.
We've gone from no Starbucks within miles of the Park to a massive new Starbucks store location in Downtown Disney, a corner spot at DCA and, now, complete takeover of the old Market House.
Once you let such brands get their "foot in the door," the door tends to get blown wide open.
Fortunately, this is not always the case. Ask our friends at your local Frontierland McDonald's (remember the french fry wagon along Thunder Trail?).
So, in this Skipper's view, Starbucks on Main Street is a somewhat mixed bag. I welcome the coffee, but mourn the loss of another familiar, long-time Main Street location.
I will add, though, that our trip to the Park this past Sunday was absolutely enjoyable! We started with coffee at Starbucks in Downtown Disney (which is a beautiful store that fits very well), and headed as a group down the newly-decorated Main Street (the fall decorations are now out in full force!) and over to the Haunted Mansion. We then took a wet ride down Splash Mountain (on a very warm morning). Disneyland was uncrowded at that point and felt very much like old times. You could see the walkways! You could walk on to attractions with practically no wait!
The iced coffee that started my morning certainly didn't hurt!



Friday, January 11, 2013

Disneyland - CHOC Walk 2012 - Some On Stage and Backstage Shots

These photographs chronicle October 2012's CHOC Walk, with a focus on the backstage areas behind Critter Country, New Orleans Square and Adventureland.
We started the walk at DCA (in the pre-dawn hours as you can see) and ended up entering Disneyland at Main Street (after the sun came up), meandering through the Park to the backstage gate just past the exit of Splash Mountain (fifth photo from the top).
We walked past the new home of Outdoor Vending, the Westsider Grill (which has taken the place of "The Pit" down below Pirates as the eatery of choice for Cast Members on that side of the Park), the back side of the Pirates and Indiana Jones buildings, and ultimately out the gate located near the Picnic Area and Parking Lot Tram drop off.
There were high school bands and cheerleaders along the way, as well as smiling, waving Cast Members.
If you are looking at Disneyland from above, with the Main Entrance at the southern part of your "map," the backstage route took us along the west to southwest edge of the Park.
Thought you all might enjoy a view of "what's back there," since you don't often get a glimpse.
Have a great day, Jungleteers!


Thursday, August 30, 2012

Disneyland - Jungle Cruise - Where's My Boat?

I could sure go for a boatful of captive guests.
Where's my P.A. mic and throttle?
Since it's a work day and I have about five minutes, here are a few other things I could happily go for right about now:
  • A walk down Main Street
  • A leisurely float through the Small World
  • An impromptu performance by Billy Hill and the Hillbillies
  • A cushioned chair on the bow of the Mark Twain and a cup of Starbucks, watching New Orleans Square slide by
  • A roll of hundreds (hey, I'm dreaming here!)
  • Seriously bumping the car in front of me on the Autopia
  • A Skyway ride
  • A pan, a broom, cigarette butts, popcorn and an audience (behind the back! No looking! between the legs! Alley Oop!)
  • A suit, a name tag, a radio and an area where I'M the supervisor!  Heaven help my poor crew...
  • Looking forward to tonight's showing of the Main Street Electrical Parade.
  • On Main Street.
  • At Disneyland.
  • An open faced turkey sandwich at the Inn Between
  • An early morning "dead head" through the rivers of the Jungle
Must run.
You all have a fine day out there!
Be safe and treat each other nicely.
Don't make me have to pull this car over and come back there!


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Disneyland - Jungle Cruise - An Early Morning Trip Before Park Opening

Greetings, Jungle Lovers!
Mike here.
Just pulled the Ganges out of boat storage and eased her up to the dock.
Hold on a second while I get these rounds loaded in my .38.
Nice morning, huh?
I am caffeinated, twitterpated, calibrated and now fully loaded.
That's the only way to start a day on Jungle.
Come on in, we'll take her for an animation check.
Nothing like being one of the first boats out.
You have your coffee?
Take the throttle, I'm a passenger now.
There you go.  Easy on the turns, but you can chug along on the straightaways.
Oooh.  That mist from the "rainforest" feels good.
Reach under the bow there and open that door.
See the radio?
I already checked it backstage.  Is the light still on?
Don't play with it!  You hit that button and we are "live" on the Operations frequency.
No need to get any supervisors marching down here wondering who's goofing off on the airwaves!
It you must play, how about I let you shoot the gun at the hippo pool?
Well we're not there yet, so put that thing back in the holster!
You bust out shots here at the Sunken City and every supervisor in Adventure/Frontier will be standing at the dock to greet us on our return!
Honestly, I don't know why I invited an "East Sider" on my boat!
You look ridiculous in that Space Mountain costume.
Good thing we don't open to guests for half an hour.
What's that?
No.  I didn't make it to Acapulco's last night.
Doug ended up in pretty bad shape, huh?
How many times do I have to tell him Long Island Teas are NOT from Long Island and that ISN'T tea!  He's gonna be fun today.  I think he's closing.
Nothing like a Jungle boat after a night of Bacchanalian bliss.
You playing Over The Line in this weekend's tournament?
You know Team Space Mountain's going down again!  Come on, no one beats the West Side.
The team from Canoes has some massive guys.
Eddie the Lead over there has arms bigger than my legs.
I saw him hit one to the breakers from the fire pit area over at Huntington!
Pull back on the throttle and stop!!!
Look, Space Cowboy, if you just cruise on by the Elephant Shower without stopping, we're BOTH gonna get blasted by that elephant up ahead to your right.
Once that animation trips, he's going to squirt.
I am NOT starting my day toweling off my boat because you forgot to stop!
See.  Now once he's done you can chug on by.
This is probably one of my favorite stretches through here.
I like how the river is smooth and we're heading straight for the falls.
You ever played with the apes?
Pull the throttle back and stop us right here.
I'll hang in the boat if you want to jump out.
I can't guarantee you'll make it back in without getting your costume wet!
Wise choice.
Last guy I offered took me up on it.
Left him in the Jungle.
Last I saw, he was cursing at me and shaking his fists as I rounded the bend at Schweitzer Falls.
Gorillas and an East Sider frolicking on the bank!!
You know, it was hard for me to tell who was who.
Good thing he was wearing that name tag.
Let me have the boat.
We gotta get back before my lead starts to wonder what's taking so long.
Hang on.
This is about as fast as one of these things can go.
You have to watch out for derails when you're empty.
Over there by the Lost Safari is where we generally jump off the boat.  See where the rocks are close to the edge of the river?  We took our Area picture there last summer.
Okay.  You can shoot the hippos now if you want.
Hold the gun way above the canopy!
I'm telling you that thing is LOUD!
Two shots and NO MORE, got it?
That's gonna leave a mark.
Dancing natives.
Yadda yadda.
Water buffalo.
Trader Sam.
See those lights in his shield.  They both need to be green or we have to stop.
They are probably done bringing boats out, so we should be clear.
Take that coffee with you and get out of my boat!
Have fun in Tomorrowland!  You better move if you don't want to be late!
What's that?
Oh, I know.
Yeah.  We are lucky.
We're working the best attraction in the Park.
Have fun checking seatbelts!!!
Don't go away mad!
Just go away!


Monday, August 27, 2012

Disneyland - Remembrance of Cast Members Past

I guess the trauma of Carnation Plaza Gardens being shut down left me in a two-month long funk.
Unable to post.
Adrift in the cosmos.


I was at my sister-in-law's for a 16th birtday party.
My 16 year old niece's boyfriend, Matt, was there, along with his parents.
His mom, Maria, is the niece of a man whose name appears on a window on Main Street above the Market House.
She also worked Adventureland Merchandise in the mid-80s.
We got to talking.
"Remember Guest Control duty and the Main Street Electrical Parade?" Maria asked.
Yes I do.
Her eyes lit with joy at the memory of manning the ropes and stanchions along the Plaza in the building excitement before the Electrical Parade stepped off onto its route through the heart of the Park.
"I miss that sooo much!"
Don't I know it, love.

Maria worked the Bazaar, but also handled the barrel of rubber snakes and related trinkets sold just outside the Jungle Cruise exit dock.
We probably passed each other on a number of occasions, never connecting, but then fate placed us at a sixteenth birthday party, sipping mojitos and calling to mind summer evenings of long ago.
My father-in-law was there, too.
He spoke of his time as a Disneyland cast member in the late 60s and early 70s.
He did electrical work on animatronics after he had to leave operations (Matterhorn, Subs) when he married a fellow cast member.
You could not both be in the same department back then, so he had to transfer.
He told us of the noise of the Tiki birds' mechanisms in the control room.
The difficulties in keeping the cannons firing in Pirates --- they were controlled by 8-track tapes and the heads got dirty, so he was in there often fixing them.
He would ride the attraction once an hour to make sure the animation was working.
Maria, my father-in-law and me spent a good amount of time kicking around stories from the Park.
Must've stirred something in this old skipper, because here I am back at my post after what I thought might be a permanent absence.
The Park has a hold on me that I cannot shake, no matter how much time passes.
No use fighting it.
So, thanks to Maria and my father-in-law, I am back to the blog.
Aren't you lucky?

Another thing.
My family and I have formed Team "Jungle is 101" and will be walking in this year's CHOC Walk in the Park.
It is always a great event.
I love that I can share with the family some of the "back areas" I used to haunt as a Cast Member.
All while supporting a worthy cause.
The people who show up for the event are a great boost to one's energy level, too.
Take Disney nuts, add some altruism and caffeine, march them around the Park and California Adventure, and you have an instant formula for success!
Hope to see many of you Jungleteers out there for the Walk.
If you can't make it, perhaps you can swing by the Jungle is 101 Team page at the CHOC website and pledge a donation.
No pressure.
Of course, I will mention at this point that I am in deep with some serious witch doctors.
Just sayin'.

Oh, and Maria's uncle?  Sebastian Moreno, aka "Seb Morey - Taxidermist."
Seb helped with the original railroad around the Park and went on to be in charge of the decorating department.
Maria still has and cherishes one of the placards that adorned Main Street lampposts during the "Blast to the Past" event circa 1987-88.
Her uncle sadly has passed away, but he left Maria and her family a great Disneyland legacy.

Gotta run.
Don't be such strangers!
Post once in a while or something!
Love you loyal readers.
The four (4) nicest folks I know (hi, Mom!)....


Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Disneyland - Plaza Gardens Requiescat in Pace

An icon of the Hub is soon to be gone.
I saw the skeletal remains of its old red and white, metal "circus tent" roof protruding over the construction wall on my trip to the Park last Sunday.
The colored metal pieces had been removed, leaving only the empty frame behind.
Perhaps the Disney folks are carefully dismantling it so that it may be reconstructed someplace else in the Disneyverse.
Probably not.
Walt danced there, under the circular roof and across its sparkling floor.
Louis Armstrong blew his trumpet from the tiny stage.
The Osmond Brothers made their debut.
Les Brown and his Band of Reknown used to perform before a floorful of happy swing dancers.
The original Mickey Mouse Club Mousketeers had many stints there as well.
The dance floor under the canopy was an area of the Park that had remained relatively unchanged over time.
The sparkling electric sign over the entrance was as much a feature of the Hub as the Castle drawbridge, the Frontierland entrance, the Adventureland sign or the popcorn wagon.
The little wooden bridge that led to Plaza Gardens was tucked beneath shady trees and crossed a winding brook.
Peace amidst the busy, crowded Park at almost any time.
Indeed, to this day it remained one of the few "parklike" areas in Disneyland, where guests could just sit and be refreshed.
Years ago I wrote a lament for this beloved corner of the Park once before, never, ever expecting to later be writing of its utter and complete demise.
I believe Walt wanted the Park to grow, to ADD new things, as long as imagination is left in the world.
Adding or "plussing" something was one of his many traits of genius.
I'm not so sure he would favor seeing "Fantasyland" intrude upon Main Street's Hub when presented with a storyboard or design drawing.
He probably would have coughed and raised that dark eyebrow the moment some overzealous Imagineer ridiculously suggested taking the Rocket Jets down from their old spot and planting them on the Hub, too.
Growing and adding new things is not the same as ripping out old things.
I suppose Sleeping Beauty Castle has had its day.
Maybe we can dismantle it and put up a "meet and greet" area for other "non-princess" Disney characters.
I mean where do you go these days to see Gaston, or Mr. Smee, or Horace Horsecollar, or any cast member from "Watcher in the Woods," "The Black Hole" or "The Black Cauldron" and other such "classics"?
That mountain over there with the bobsleds?
Don't repaint - REMOVE! REPLACE!
Enough with Pirates and Ghosts and Peter Pan!
We can yank 'em all out and put in attractions that have more "crossover" appeal, like "Wizards of Waverly Place Magical Hollow," "Phineas & Ferb's Platypus Manor" and "The Suite Life On Deck's Cruise of Terror."
Imagine an audio-animatronic Mr. Moseby, Zack and Cody in a dark attraction based upon rehashed "Love Boat" episodes and overgrown twins that have lost their appeal.
The heart thrills at the thought.
And Main Street.
What the heck is that place all about?
Does anyone really care about turn-of-the-century America anymore?
Let's lose the 1890s facades and trick out a West Coast version of Times Square!
Slap up some skyscrapers on either side of Main Street, with gleaming steel and glass.
Penny Arcade?
We've installed "Studio 54," a 1970s disco tribute bar and nightclub in its place!
Come on in kids, it's a blast!
There's a life-sized "K.C. and the Sunshine Band" animatronics stage show that repeats itself every 15 minutes!
Put on your Boogie Shoes 'cause that's the way aha, aha, we like it!
Over on the east side of the street, the lame old Market House has been transformed into the Guggenheim West!
Immerse yourself in a post-modern, cutting edge retrospective of International Abstractionism, along with some classic Kandinsky!
Oodles of family fun await!
And the horse-drawn streetcars of yesterday are now the Manhattan Taxis!
Take a memorable journey through the streets of New Main Street in the back of a smelly cab operated by a guy with a thick accent and a meter that never stops!!


I got a little carried away there.

Carnation Plaza Gardens, I will miss you.

Thanks, as Bob Hope said, for the memories.