Friday, January 11, 2013

January 12, 2013: Happy Birthday, John Lasseter

My daughter’s hero, John Lasseter was born on this day in 1957. John first worked for Disney as a Jungle Cruise skipper at Disneyland and eventually worked as an animator for Walt Disney Feature Animation. Today he is the Chief Creative Officer for Pixar and Disney Animation. Toy Story, Cars, Up, Wall-E, Wreck It Ralph and a host of other movies we brought to completion under the guidance, or direct work of, John Lasseter. There are very few corners of WDW that you can visit where you won’t find Lasseter’s influence to some degree. You could sleep in the Cars section of Art of Animation, go to Hollywood Studios and ride Toy Story Midway Mania, meet Merida at the Magic Kingdom, experience It’s Tough To Be A Bug in the Animal Kingdom and we even played Brave games at EPCOT on our last trip. John Lasseter may be today’s version of Walt; he certainly is to Allison.

I learned to read by looking at comic books. I remember being at Hinkle’s Motel and Restaurant in Louisa, about three years old, looking at comics on the Motel’s magazine rack. In the comic, when the hero hit the villain there was a big splash of color, action and a word: BAM! or POW! or Whack! and I started to figure out that those words represented the sound of the villain being thumped. It was the first time that I assigned meaning to the written word. That comic was Batman and a couple of years later, in 1966, “Batman” with Adam West and Burt Ward appeared on television. Batman and Superman were always my favorites even though Stan Lee was my comic book version of John Lasseter. I know Disney owns Marvel but every time that I ride Soarin’ at EPCOT, I am thinking, “I can fly like Superman.”

My amazing mental abilities tell me that you have almost finished reading today’s blog. But my abilities pale in comparison to the “Amazing” Kreskin, born in 1935. But I do feel some vibrations on the spiritual plane, it’s a message…

Remember, your best excuse is always: waiting for your dreams to come true.

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