Monday, November 7, 2011

My Favorite Place: Take Two

As many of you know I have been at Disneyland for the past several days. I’ve written a previous blog post about why Disneyland is my favorite place on planet Earth. It’s clean, happy, fun, and I’m convinced they pump an addictive chemical into the air that gives everyone who visits a sense of well-being. I’m OK with that. In fact, I’ll take seconds. Actually I’ll take two hundred forty firsts.

Disneyland is the best place to people watch. You think the mall on Black Friday is the perfect hunting ground for the completely crazy, you should see Disneyland any day of the year. Here’s a list of people who frequent the happiest place on Earth.

Asian dudes wearing business suits and carrying laptop bags. It’s no secret that Disneyland is basically Asian crack, but it seems that only 95% of the Asian population actually enjoys Disneyland. The other 5% are too worried about falling soy bean prices to truly enjoy the house of mouse.

Adults in full costume. Here’s something I’ll bet you never thought you’d see, a grown man dressed as Goofy. I’m not talking about wearing a Goofy shirt, hat, socks, and underwear or someone who gets paid to dress like Goofy. I’m talking about the dude in his late thirties dressed in the Goofy costume his wife made for him just for this trip to Disneyland. On a side note, some adult costumes kick some serious ass. The Mad Hatter and Jack Sparrow wannabes that really get into their characters are brilliant. This trip I saw a couple dressed as Snape and Bellatrix Lestrange from Harry Potter. Now, Disney has nothing to do with the Harry Potter franchise so I don’t really know why they dressed up. But I am grateful they did. They were amazing.

The spoiled princess. The following is a true story that I witnessed with my own two eyes. My daughter likes to have her face painted at Disneyland. Most of the time there’s a five minute wait. Thursday was no different. We paid and waited our turn. Enter the spoiled princess. A smokin’ hot dad walks up to the face painting station, his little girl picks her desired adornment, he pays, and the lady wrangling the queue tells the man it will be about five minutes. He informs his baby girl and she throws the mother of all fits. It might have been cute if she just stamped her foot and pouted, but that wouldn’t cut it for the spoiled princess. This three year old child went full on berserker. She tore through the little shop ripping princess dresses off their hangers, throwing various princess props on the ground, screaming, not crying, screaming, her cute little head off. The dad picks her up and she starts beating him about the head! Turns out, this kid goes to Disneyland at least once a week. She should be used to the inevitable wait. Is she? No. Why? Because her daddy has never made her wait. He tried paying me $20 to let his little girl go in front of mine. I told him to invest his money in Midol because in about ten years, he’s going to be buying it in bulk. 

The badass in Mickey Ears. You might be surprised to know that a significant portion  of Disneyland guests are badasses in their real life. They drink too much, drive too fast, sleep with too many women, but get them inside the Magic Kingdom and they turn into a five year old. I saw a HUGE biker guy, in his leathers, wearing a pair of Mickey Mouse ears with “Tiny” stitched into the back. I’m almost positive this guy is an enforcer for a meth ring in The Valley but at Disneyland he lets his inner child out to play.

The Apocalypse Packer.  There was a time you’d see me toting a backpack around Disneyland filled with all manner of we might needs. I ditched the backpack for a small purse then shed the purse for a pocket. Really, the only thing you need to take to Disneyland is a credit card and your ID. Yes, take a jacket but leave it in a locker so you’re not lugging it around all damn day. The Apocalypse Packer doesn’t just take a backpack, they sport a pack that one might take on a ten day back packing trip through the Australian outback. I have no idea what they have in there, but I’m guessing it ranges from bottles of water to a twelve gauge shotgun. Really folks, Disney’s got ya covered. Do you have a blister? Stop by the first aid station for a band aid. Need a drink and don’t want to pay $5 for a bottle of water? There are drinking fountains everywhere, even in the lines. Hungry? They got food! I know, you’re saying, “But Harper, what if a terrorist attack traps us inside Disneyland for days? What then?” Disney’s got that too. Did you know Disneyland has enough water to tend to the needs of a park at full capacity for three weeks? It’s true. They can empty all their water rides and filter and treat the water to Sparklets quality. The water your little boat is floating on through on It’s a Small World is the same water the guy delivers to your door every week. Disneyland has medical staff, a police force, and contingency plans for everything from a chemical attack to a zombie invasion. Relax people. You can leave the bear spray home. Pooh's been trained. 

Women who wear heels. When I’m at Disneyland I walk about five miles a day. That’s a lot of walking for someone who spends her days trapped behind a computer. It never ceases to amaze me what women will wear to hike through Disneyland. I’ve seen everything from flip flops to stilettos no self-respecting stripper would ever wear. I believe fashion never takes a day off, but neither should common sense. These women just spent at least eighty bucks to get into the park for one day and they’re worried about showing off their pedicure. When I’m at Disneyland I wear sensible shoes, clothes that don’t require a lot of fussing, and Mickey Mouse ears. I don’t wear three inch spike heels with a dress that gives all the people waiting in line for Peter Pan a Britney Spears style peep show when I climb in and out of my flying pirate ship.

  The Photo Journalist. Everyone goes to Disneyland with a camera. They want to document that inevitable meeting between their kid and Mickey Mouse. This is normal. What isn’t normal is the guy who has five cameras hanging around his neck who takes pictures of literally everything. The attractions, the parades, the food, the souvenirs, the characters, the plants, random children, the guy peeing at the urinal next to him. This person doesn’t ride any rides, doesn’t interact with the characters, doesn’t watch the parades. He just documents other people having fun. This guy is kind of scary because you know he’s just there to update his creepy wall full of pictures of badasses in Mickey ears and spoiled princesses.

Despite all the crazies that show up at Disneyland, I love it. I love every single moment I’m there. Even the last two hours when adults turn into real life actual zombies and children turn into wind up toys. It's my happy place.


  1. Oh I love this! Your descriptions are perfect, and I would have paid money to listen to you tell the dad to invest in Midol! Love, love, love! Is it wrong of me to like those heels, just a little?

  2. I love this write up but can't share it with my husband. He already has a darn good excuse as to why we shouldn't go.

  3. Great! I will watch out for all of these when I'm at Disneyworld at Christmas!

  4. OMG I laughed several times because I have seen all of these people at one time or another at Disney World! hahaha Thank you so much for sharing. I am going back to Disneyland after 25 years next year and I am really excited!!! But I have to say I border on the "photo journalist" so if you see me , dont make fun of me hahaha

  5. I would have the spoiled little princess. So I stay home. I'm so happy for you that you have found your happy place ion this world. Maybe I don't get out enough but my happy place is at home. Excellent blog post Katie, you never cease to make me smile.

  6. This was so entertaining and funny! Who would bring a lap top to Disneyland!

    People watching is a fascinating thing to do!

    Thanks for sharing!

  7. I have just installed iStripper, and now I enjoy having the sexiest virtual strippers on my desktop.