Wednesday, July 31, 2013

August 1, 2013: Girlfriend's Day, Spiderman Day, Dom DeLuise and Joe Elliot.

Today is Girlfriend’s Day. If you are young and in love, you should celebrate your girlfriend but if you are old and married, your girlfriend had better be your wife. Just saying. Minnie Mouse is a loyal girlfriend for our mouse in charge, so go to Chef Mickey’s or one of the other WDW locations where you can meet her.

Today is Spiderman Day. In August of 1962, Stan Lee and Steve Ditko introduced the eternal teenage superhero that had as many or more problems than the readers. Spiderman originated one of, if not the greatest and most quoted lines in the history of comic, “With great power comes great responsibility.” That other park in Orlando has the rights to Marvel Superheroes in an amusement park east of the Mississippi but there are still ways to honor Spiderman at WDW. T-shirts, products, some really cools ones at Downtown Disney, are widely available and someday, who knows, there may even be Marvel Superhero attractions at Walt Disney World.

Dom DeLuise was born in Brooklyn, New York on this date in 1933. I first discovered Dom DeLuise in Mel Brooks’ completely insane comedies: Blazing Saddles, Silent Movie, History of the World, Part 1, Spaceballs and Robin Hood: Men in Tights. DeLuise has starred in Oliver & Company and made a cameo appearance in the original The Muppets Movie. In Addition, DeLuise’s youngest son, David, starred as Jerry Russo on Wizards of Waverly Place.

1959: Joe Elliot was born on this date in 1959. I remember when Def Leppard, for whom Elliot is the lead singer, started as a new wave of British heavy metal band. The average age of the members of the band was under 20. MTV made Leppard monsters of rock. I saw Def Leppard in the round in Charleston, West Virginia in 1988. This was after the drummer had lost his arm and it was fascinating to watch his operate on his custom built drum kit. Joe Elliot is a huge fan of my favorite group and singer, Mott the Hoople and Ian Hunter and has sung on stage with Hunter a number of times. Any time we have a British rocker in our blog I refer you to the English Pavilion and The British Revolution. Rock on!

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

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

July 31, 2013: Uncommon Instruments Day

Today is Uncommon Instruments Awareness Day. Whether you play a crystallophone or a Theremin, a glass armonica or stylophone, an Aeolian harp or a hang, today is your day. Rock out on your euphonium or crank that hurdy-gurdy. It’s all music and if no one really understands the instrument they also may no realize how well you play it. Go to the Imagination Pavilion and play the instruments that you can play just by waving your hands in the air. Trust me, it’s fun.
Gary Lewis was born on this day in 1946 in Los Angeles, California. Gary, the son of Jerry Lewis, and his group the Playboys performed at Disneyland in 1964. They went on to have a string of hits including the classic, “This Diamond Ring.” Lewis has played the Flower Power Concert series during the Flower and Garden Festival at EPCOT several times.

1932: Ted Cassidy was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Cassidy will always be Lurch from The Addams Family. Let’s hit The Haunted Mansion at The Magic Kingdom and enjoy.

1966: Dean Cain was born in Mt. Clemens, Michigan. Dean played Clark Kent / Superman on Lois & Clark. Honor Dean and all the TV and movie Supermen by riding the Back Lot Tour and checking out the Superman cape in the post-ride display.

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

Monday, July 29, 2013

July 30, 2013: Cheesecake Day, Father-in-law Day, Henry Ford

Today is Cheesecake Day. Cheesecake is evil, delicious, delicious evil. I have to be careful with cheesecake. I found out that some cheesecake crusts have peanuts in them. Be careful out there. If you don’t have any such problems then enjoy your cheesecake but enjoy it in moderation, all things in moderation. You can get cheesecake all over Walt Disney World, table service or counter service and, if you go to Pop Century Resort, you can get tie-dyed cheesecake. It’s good.

Today is Father-in-Law Day. I have a father-in-law, and a pretty good one at that. I hope to be a father-in-law some day. I’m actually amazed that I’m still walking around. I’d like to walk around another 20 or 30 years. I’d like the chance to be a grandfather as well but I’d prefer to be a father-in-law first. Walt was a father-in-law, in fact his son-in-law ran Disney at one time. See what a father-in-law can do. Visit Walt, and Mickey, at the Magic Kingdom or even better, visit your own father-in-law.

My favorite female singer is Kate Bush. I have been listening to her music since 1979. Her music is wonderful, but a bit of an acquired taste for Americans. Bush remains an important and respected performer in Great Britain with lesser success here in the states. Bush produces intensely personal music that has matured with her. At one point, Kate penned a song to be included in the movie Dinosaur. The song did not make the final production but we can still ride Dinosaur, Countdown to Extinction, to honor an exceptional talent.

Lisa Kudrow was born on this day in 1963 in Encino, California. Kudrow is famous for the role of Phoebe Buffay on Friends. Lisa also provided the voice of Aphrodite for Hercules: The Animated Series. I wish there was more Hercules related material at Walt Disney World but Meg at Phantasmic has been about it and she wasn’t part of the show on our last visit. Sorry.

Henry Ford was born on this date in 1863 in Dearborn Township, Michigan. We all know the contributions that he made to mass-produce the automobile.  Ford’s contribution is obvious when you look around at the size of the parking lots at Walt Disney World. Don’t forget where your car is.

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

Sunday, July 28, 2013

July 29, 2013: Back to School for teachers, National Chicken Wing Day, Lasagna Day and Rain Day.

Today is out first day back at school. The students return Thursday. Today and tomorrow we engage in what is known as professional development. Hopefully we will get tuned up and ready for another year of sharing what we know with the students of Louisa Middle School and hoping the students share what they know with us.

Today is Lasagna Day, National Chicken Wing Day and Rain Day. I guess that means that the perfect day today would involve sitting inside while it rains eating lasagna and chicken wings. Sounds good to me. You can have lasagna at various locations around Disney, Try Tony’s at The Magic Kingdom, Tutto Italia at EPCOT or Mama Melrose’s at Hollywood Studios.

On this date in 1941, David Warner was born in Manchester, England. Warner appeared in the original Tron as Ed Dillinger and the voice of the Master Control Program. He also narrated Pooh’s Grand Adventure: The Search for Christopher Robin and Winnie the Pooh: A Valentine for You. Let’s go to EPCOT and ride Tron (Test) Track in honor of Mr. Warner.

Dave Stevens was born on this date in 1955 in Lynwood, California. Stevens is the creator of The Rocketeer comic book and film. My friend, Beau Smith, worked for Eclipse Comics when they did the comic book adaptation of the movie, he gave me a copy and I went to see the movie. I loved it, I have it on Blue-Ray. The vibe of The Rocketeer fits perfectly with Hollywood Studios, so just wander the park and enjoy the atmosphere.

While we’re at Hollywood Studios, on this date in 1999, the Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster Starring Aerosmith opened with a special, invitation-only party, featuring Aerosmith. The Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster was the motivation for one of our three-park park hopping final days at Walt Disney World. We were there when the ride was closed for refurbishment but it was going to open the last day of our trip. We started at the Magic Kingdom, moved by monorail to EPCOT then travelled by boat to Hollywood Studios, hitting all the things we had missed earlier and ending up in the standby line for the Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster. We rode it, loaded up, and headed home with a bag full of snacks from our leftover snack credits. We always park hop, which is the one ticket option we cannot do without.

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

Saturday, July 27, 2013

July 28, 2013: World Milk Chocolate Day

Today is World Milk Chocolate Day. I love chocolate, it’s not something that I eat every day but I really enjoy it. As a diabetic I have learned that foods are not generally forbidden for me but there are foods that I cannot partake of in unlimited quantity. Chocolate is one of those, something that I must enjoy in moderation. I like dark chocolate and milk chocolate but my wife, an avowed chocoholic, hates dark chocolate and will eat only milk chocolate. If you are at Walt Disney World, try Ghirardelli’s at Downtown Disney (soon to be Disney Springs). Don’t be dismayed if you can’t make it to Downtown Disney, don’t worry; there’s chocolate everywhere and hot chocolate available for the refillable mugs at the resorts.

Today is Parents’ Day. There are a lot of parents at WDW because there are a lot of kids at WDW. In fact, parents, and other adults, can have a marvelous time at WDW with or without the kids. We have never made a trip to Walt Disney World without our children but over the last several years we have been freed up from the kids and they have been freed up from us. I remember the days with walkie-talkies and Deana being with the kids while I went to get Fast Passes; Channels with numerous people speaking numerous languages and all of us trying to communicate with each other over the multi-lingual chatter. As time progressed, we switched to cell phones, which made communication more efficient, and then the next thing we know the kids are 21 and 16. On our last trip in June, for the first time, we scheduled separate evening meals, with Deana and I eating together and the kids eating at a restaurant of their choosing. Our kids ate at Kouzzina on The Boardwalk and Deana and I ate at Bongo’s in Downtown Disney (soon to be Disney Springs). It was nice. You can enjoy be parents at WDW but there are many different ways to enjoy a break from being parents as well.

Bud Luckey was born on this day in 1934 in Billings, Montana. Bud has worked for years as a character designer, working on: Toy Story, Toy Story 2, A Bug’s Life, Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo, Cars, The Incredibles and Ratatouille. In 2011, Bud contributed the voice for Eeyore in Winnie The Pooh. There’s no park that you can visit that wouldn’t serve as a tribute to Bud: The Magic Kingdom, Monsters, Inc. Laugh Floor; The Animal Kingdom, It’s tough to be a Bug; EPCOT, Ratatouille in the France Pavilion; Hollywood Studios, Toy Story Midway Mania. That’s just for starters.

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