Tuesday, March 16, 2010
That's What They Call Progress Dear: Part 1
Today and tomorrow I have a different kind of post in store for those two or three of you that still read my blog....when its updated....every decade or so. Today's post asks the question of progress and I hope to come up with an answer or two by tomorrow (That's right, its the same wing it attitude that got me where I am today....where ever that is). And if this isn't your kind of post, don't worry. I have a great top five that is just about finished which will be posted either Thursday or Friday...so yeah. I hope you guys and gals enjoy this (if not, at least have the decency to march in single file when you come at me with the pitchforks and torches):
I think I have let it known that I enjoy the Carousel of Progress. It creates a false nostalgia where we yearn for simpler days, simpler times. A time when the latest technology meant an ice box, and not the next generation of Ipods. A time when the news meant information on a small town event or the creation of a “flying contraption” and not how many babies Octomom has now or who’s suing whom because their coffee was to hot. A time when the youts (“What did you say? The two what’s?” Sorry, My Cousin Vinny reference) were expected to be home from formal events at nine…..okay, so we don’t yearn for all of it.
But this isn’t a post of comparing the world then and now. Rather, I want to contemplate the idea of progress as it pertains to the wonderful world of Disney (not the tv show…but you get the point). You see, as I wandered around the inter-web today, I found myself watching a video of the Cranium Command from the old Wonders of Life pavilion. From there, chaos ensued and I found myself watching everything from old Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride ride-through videos to video of 20,000 leagues under the Sea, and even old videos of Walt talking about his dream of the “Florida Project.” And it brought up the question in my mind that I’m sure has flown through yours in the past as well, “What would Walt think if he saw what Disney Animation Studios and Disneyland and Mickey Mouse had done to the world?”
He wanted to make movies so he started an Animation Studio with his brother, it later evolved into a full movie studio. Today, that studio is responsible for over 300 full length animated and live-action movies as well as many more short animated features. Then he said “there should be something built where parents and children could have fun together,” and Disneyland was born. Today, there are five Disney resorts in four countries, with a total of eleven parks around the world and a twelfth park coming to Shanghai in the near future. To see the rest of the company’s success and evolution throughout the ears, all you have to do is walk through a mall. In record stores, there are sections devoted to Disney music. Clothing stores feature everything from Peter Pan shirts to Donald Duck shoes to Mickey Mouse Pajamas (I used to have 101 Dalmation jammies…party like a rockstar). Walk into any game store and there, in their PS2 Greatest Games section, you will find both Kingdom Hearts games (If you don’t know what Kingdom Hearts is, then a say shame. But think Final Fantasy meets Disney meets a bottle of steroids meets the essence of epicness….with only a single player mode). Fact is, everywhere you look, its Disney Disney Disney. All this from a man who left for a better life with nothing more than $40 and an idea or two…or three….or four.
But I still haven’t gotten to any sort of point yet. Why is that you may ask? Well its so…….I ….. umm…..have something to write about tomorrow and anyways, this post is getting long enough as it is. You see, the question I hope to answer tomorrow is, “What would Walt say if he were to see Disney World now?” I also want to try to explain that first concept of “progress” in the parks. Why is it that beloved attractions come and go to make way for the “progress?” And other stuff. I’m not considered one of the great thinkers of the world. At this point, I’d settle for one of the great thinkers of my house (though I think my sister takes that crown from me).
These are not really thoughts. These are not really ideas. These are simply ramblings of a crazy man. But really, what’s wrong with that?
Have a Zip-A-Dee-Do-Dah-Day!!!!