Disney World. August. Smell the Magic.

Gay Guy,

Here's something else I have in common with gay people: I like Disney World. Spent part of my recent vacation there.

But, like other introverted straight guys I know, it's all the other people who bring me down. If I hate crowds, heat, and waiting in line, what could go wrong?

Oh, who am I kidding? I love rides, pop culture, junk food, and sensory overload.
It brings out the best and worst in people... some folks high on life, others brought to the breaking point, sometimes both on the same day. My peeve: anytime a ride's finale deposits you at the back of a store. I refuse to buy anything from a shop I never planned on entering... unless it's really cool.

So, yes, it's wonderful and horrible all at once.

Still, we did pretty well. A tropical storm kept the temps down and crowds away for a couple of days. And Disney has invented a ride reservation system which gives you a ticket and a designated time to skip the line (so who are those schmoes still waiting?). Added bonus: for whatever reason (weak dollar, school schedules?), the place was teeming with happy, well-mannered Brits.

Sorry to be a hater on this, fellow Americans, but it was a noticeable difference from the usual themepark nonsense. Don't get me wrong, quite a few of the yahoo brigade were there too... easily identified by their brand new sneakers and ultra-aerodynamic sunglasses (keep dreaming, dudes, you're not fooling anyone). I know our tourists get a bad rap overseas, but I think Disney does a good job keeping the worst offenders at home. The biggest yahoos were absolutely befuddled by the chicken-nugget-less fake countries in Epcot, for goodness sake. So I don't think they're off to Machu Picchu anytime soon.

Even given the yahoo factor, your team takes over the Disney empire for weekends at a time, called Gay Days. They even published a themed album available on iTunes. (Which animated classic featured "Different Kind of Love Song - Return to the Five & Dime Mix" by Jimmy James As 'Dark Lady'? I can't place it.)

I understand the choice as a gay destination.
And the scope of Disney World is huge. Wouldn't bother me a bit to share vacation space with them. But, without encouraging any conflict, I'd love to watch unsuspecting yahoos (mentioned above) try to adapt as they wonder how the Magic Kingdom suddenly got so magical. Culture clash. I haven't heard of any trouble, but there must be some tense moments.

We barely left Disney property while we were there, but I did see that Universal Studios is building a Harry Potter and Hogwarts themepark. Now that's more your speed, no?

Like Las Vegas, Disney World is too big to be easily labeled. Or, to be absolutely liked or disliked. Though it is possible to overdose (and overspend).

[The art comes from Hyungkoo Lee's art exhibit, called Animatus. He builds functional skeletons of famous cartoon characters to scale. Cool, but slightly obsessive. On the Disney trip, I noticed that the some of the walking costumed characters' mouths are now animated and synced with dialog (they always used to pantomime, right?). Magical or creepy?]

--Straight Guy


Heather said...

If Disney wants people like you to buy stuff in those stores they dump you in at the end of the ride, they should consider getting in touch with Mr. Lee.

And I'm going creepy on the moving mouth synched with dialogue bit...in fact, I think this is creepier than the aforementioned skeleton cartoons.

Gay Guy said...

Uhmmmmm, who's Mr. Lee?

Gay Guy said...

Whoops, now I understand. Mr. Lee the artist.

garrett munroe said...

hhmmmmmmmm...walt disney world is pretty "gay" in the un-cool sense. lol, when did straight guys become cooler than gay guys?