Please Help Ruin Daffystardust’s Disney World Vacation

As Le Blog readers who have been paying attention know, my compatriot in blogging here, Lebeau, has just recently returned from a very well planned and clearly wonderful visit with his family to Walt Disney World. Over the last few months, I have been endeavoring to create a similarly magical experience for my family and myself. The tickets were purchased (both park and Christmas party). Reservations were made for a three night stay at the Pop Century resort. Discounts were hunted down and applied. Dining reservations were meticulously acquired far in advance, then re-considered. Magical Express airport pickup was arranged. I spent several hours jimmying my family’s daily schedules for maximum enjoyment and minimal wait times over at touringplans.com.

Then I started thinking about you, dear readers.


How would my reports bring something new or different from the wonderful installments already delivered by Mr. Lebeau? Sure, they would be mine instead of his. That would make them different. My six year-old nephew will be the only kid in the group, and he’s a thrill-seeker instead of a charming princess. That’s different. A couple of new things will be open when my family visits. I could offer that. But is that enough? How can awesome be better than or different from awesome?

Then it hit me. What’s cool about the internet/social media I’m using right now?

Interactivity.

I can give the readers at Le Blog the chance to manipulate what they end up seeing from my daily posts when they begin just one month from now. But my plans are pretty well done…and I think I’ve got a good grip on the stuff I want to see and do versus the stuff I don’t really…

A-ha!

What’s more fun than making somebody else do something harmless that they really don’t want to do?

So…I’m going to be asking Le Blog readers to vote on 3 different categories of activities at Disney World that are either generally considered unpopular, or that I personally suspect I would not enjoy. I will be required to participate in the option from each poll which receives the most votes. That’ll be an average of one mildly unpleasant experience for me per day.

Poll One: Unpopular Attractions

Stitch’s Great Escape

This is a widely reviled attraction which was once the more intense “The ExtraTERRORestrial Alien Encounter,” but was reworked so Disney could promote the fun animated movie Lilo & Stitch. The attraction retains none of the charm of the source film and is considered by many to still be too intense for little kids. On my first encounter with Stitch’s Great Escape, I was pleased to see the seat restraints, because I thought they might be there to keep audience members from falling out of a moving ride. As it turns out, they’re there to keep you from just rolling your eyes and leaving during the middle of the show. I know I don’t like this.

Tricera Top Spin

I was never a big fan of the Dumbo ride to begin with, so this Dumbo clone that stars cartoon-like triceratop dinosaurs just seems like lazy imagineering to me. Every time I make the mistake of boarding a spinner ride like this, I’m on it for about 10 seconds before I get bored. This just looks like a waste of time.

Journey Into Imagination with Figment

This is another attraction which has been changed, first becoming Journey Into YOUR Imagination, a take on the”Honey, I Shrunk the…” franchise. Fans of the original attraction objected, and after just two years, another update was done with the hope of recapturing them, with Figment’s name added to the title as a rather transparent come-on. Die-hards continue to hate the new version and it lost its longstanding Kodak sponsorship two years ago. I thought the original version was kind of dull and have never returned to check out the others. Don’t make me.

Swiss Family Treehouse

Can someone explain to me why Disney has seen fit to install this walk-through treehouse in four different parks? “Swiss Family Robinson” was a very popular family film. In fact, it was the top-grossing movie at the box office…in 1960. Perhaps because it wasn’t animated, today’s kids have no idea the attraction is based on a movie. Heck, I had no interest in it when I was going to Disneyland regularly as a little kid back in the early 70′s. They have since changed the theming there to promote Tarzan. Ugh. The tree.

Ellen’s Energy Adventure

Not quite as outdated as the Drew Carey thing over at Hollywood Studios, but wow. Ellen’s Energy Adventure spends 45 minutes of your park time showing you movies about energy sources. The theatre seats you’re in move around, resulting in a few minutes of cool animatronic dinosaurs, but the huge amount of time spent looking at an educational movie that is scientifically stuck in the 90′s just makes me wonder why we can’t just have more dinosaurs. Let me know when they change this to Ellen’s Dinosaur Adventure.

Poll Two: Meet ‘n’ Creeps

Some folks love spending time in the parks glad-handing with unknown actors in furry costumes when there are perfectly good rides nearby. Lebeau’s kids sure do. I do not judge them. They are the target demographic for meet ‘n’ greets. I was sorely disappointed as a kid when I shook Mickey’s hand and was positive that there was a girl under that huge head. Even as a kid I believed in traditional casting. As an adult, my relationship with the characters is the same as it is with strippers. I like seeing them around. They lend to the fun going on. But it creeps me out when they try to interact with me. I’ve actually worn similar “furry” costumes and been accosted by little kids myself. Those things are nasty.

Why aren’t you walking on all fours, Pluto?
Go get a real dog, and I’ll hug that.

What the heck are you, Goofy?
Tuck in your shirt! Yuck!

Pinocchio’s a little boy in lederhosen.
I really shouldn’t be hugging him.

Daisy’s not wearing pants

this is a nightmare
What are they doing to that kid?

Poll Three: Nasty Snacks

I’ll admit that this Eel Roll found in the Japan pavillion in EPCOT is presented attractively.
That doesn’t stop it from being eel.

They sell egg rolls from a wagon in Adventureland.
I feel like that’s just begging for trouble.

Yes, these are tiny little whole crabs sold in a clear plastic bag, again in the Japan pavilion at EPCOT. They watch while you eat their friends.

I don’t like pickles to begin with. Then I found out that this is where they are kept by Disney Parks.

I couldn’t find a picture of the nasty no sugar added brownies they give you with a counter service meal at Disney World. Apparently those things go right in the trash.

So there you go. It is now your job to help select one thing I don’t want to ride, one thing I don’t want to hug, and one thing I don’t want to eat.

If you have any additional ideas on how to provide me with mild annoyance while I’m at “the World,” share it with me in the comments section. Please keep it clean, and remember that A) I don’t wish to be surprised. Everything has to be cleared with me first here in the comments section, and B) we’re looking for slight irritation, not utter misery.

Hopefully this will help make my trip more entertaining for everybody else.

Posted on November 12, 2012, in Animal Kingdom, Epcot, Magic Kingdom, theme parks, Trip Report, Walt Disney World and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 37 Comments.

  1. I think the rest of us will enjoy watching this!

    Like

  2. Best article ever. Seriously. I salute you. And I’m going to link this sucker all over the place to make sure you get lots of votes ;)

    I votes as folows:

    Triceratops Spin – I had to ride it four times in a row. Your turn!

    Pinocchio – Good luck finding him. Might want to start looking now. (hehe) Hint: You’re going to need to climb on a parade float because he doesn’t do meet and greets any more. Chip and Dale will be an acceptable substitute.

    Bag of Crabs – That’s just a dare, dude.

    Like

    • Thanks, Lebeau!

      Shoot! I’ve got pics of my nephew with Pinocchio, so that’s why I thought he’d be available. I should’ve double checked. Hmm…do I swap him out for somebody else, do extra legwork and hope for extra friendly cast members, or just cross my fingers and hope somebody else wins?

      Yeah, the bag of crabs will probably run away and hide. The bucket of pickles was a great find, though.

      Like

      • Any food item stored in a bucket belongs on the list, for sure.

        Pinocchio was meeting up until very recently. But the list of characters meeting was culled little by little over the year. Pinocchio and Jiminey Cricket were both victims of the cuts. If you make a substitution, my vote goes to Duffy the Disney Bear!

        Like

  3. I like your style so I’ve just cast my votes.
    I think you’ll look great meeting and greeting Chip and Dale, although I’d hold off eating the Bag of Crabs until after the Triceratops Spin ride.

    Like

    • I’m looking forward to seeing where this goes. Thanks for adding your 2 cents!
      The Tricera Top Spin is competing well so far!

      Like

    • Fortunately, Bag of Crabs and Triceratops Spin are in different parks. We should probably make him load up on egg rolls and then ride the spinning dinos. How cruel do we want to be?

      Like

  4. By the way, congrats on the most popular article of the day. You have unseated Val “the King” Kilmer.

    Like

    • Thanks for helping it get there! At this point I’m just hoping some of the voting will stay close enough to keep people coming back. If it turns into 3 runaways the article’s life may be short.

      Like

      • That’s what follow-up articles are for. I’m seeing a whole series. Help Detroy My Weekend. Help Destory My Thanksgiving. Help Destroy My Christmas. Help Destroy My Life.

        It’s a winning concept!

        Like

  5. So far, the races look pretty close. Although it seems pretty likely you’re going to be eating a bag of crabs, my friend. Someone over at wdwmagic assured me they are actually delish. For your sake, I hope he’s right.

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    • Yes, I saw that.

      It was fun to see such nice response to the article.

      When I get a chance I’m going to post that crazy “mouth full of crabs” video. Hysterical!

      Like

    • You know you have to video tape yourself eating these things, right? And singing the song.

      Like

      • I’m working on figuring out how to do that.

        I called Disney World on one of my work breaks today to see if they could hold a bag of crabs for me, but the lady I talked to couldn’t figure out how to transfer me to the Japan pavilion. I’m going to call again and see if I find somebody who knows what to do.

        Like

  6. As of this AM:
    - Stitch and Figment are in a dead heat

    - Pinocchio is just 4 votes ahead of Chip ‘n’ Dale

    - Bag ‘Crabs is trouncing all comers

    Everybody should vote again!

    Like

  7. I just got off the phone w the Japan Pavilion at EPCOT and they’re holding a couple of bags of crabs for me.
    Gotta learn that song.

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    • I am doing a happy dance.

      I have heard from more than 1 person that these things are the bomb. It’ll be a long time before I get back to Epcot, but when I do I am definitely going to try these for myself.

      Won’t it be funny when the readers wind up MAKING your vacation instead of ruining it!

      Like

  8. Uh-oh!

    Disney Food Blog just posted a review of the crabs:

    “These are listed as Tamagogani on the package. They are exactly what they look like – little dried crabs.

    They are coated in sugar, starch, soy sauce, and mirin. Mirin is an essential Japanese condiment made with a lot of sugar, often used to ease the fishy flavors in foods. While usually a touch of mirin is used with foods, these guys needed more. A lot more.

    Immediately when I opened the package a strong smell — not unlike an old fish tank or low tide in a salt marsh — filled the room. I’m sorry, I know we try to be positive here on the DFB, but these things… well they taste like they smell. You eat the whole crab, shell and all. The shell is crunchy, and of the two I had one of them broke into little shards in my mouth. Not sharp enough to damage but definitely not a good texture.

    The crabs tasted dirty. Have you ever smelled an old fish tank? It tasted sort of like that smell.

    Overall
    While simplicity paid dividends in the rice candy and crackers, the lesson I learned is that sometimes a dried crab is just a dried crab.”

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  9. Ha Ha hahahahaha!!
    So they might actually be nasty? Cool.
    I’m going to have to reference this review when I blog the night the deed goes down.

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  10. Hi, guy who wrote that crab review here. Your mileage with the crabs may vary. Perhaps you are the kind of person who licks to lick rocks at the shore, or can’t help putting your hands in your mouth after picking up a horseshoe crab in the “Please Touch” tank at the aquarium. Maybe you are trying to get a show on the Food Network where you travel the world and pretend to like the terrible local dishes they have (if you are, don’t. It’s been done twice).

    What I’m saying is that hey, you might like them. The Japanese sure do. However I suspect that they make them especially for Disney and laugh at the Americans who buy them while saying “They must be a delicacy in Japan.”

    So I voted for the crabs. Because I’m curious what you think… and evil.

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  11. Just 3 days tl the poll results here go official! Two of the three competitions are still tightly contested!

    Like

  12. I think I’ve figured out the video thing.

    Like

  13. It looks like Chip and Dale are pulling ahead. Here’s a guide to where to meet the ‘munks:

    Epcot – Outside Innoventions West
    Animal Kingdom – Camp Minnie Mickey Character Trails
    Magic Kingdom – Frontierland – Across from the Shootin’ Gallery

    Lucky for you they are relatively easy to meet. I’d suggest looking for them in Frontierland if at all possible. That way you’ll get the little cowboy outfits for extra creepiness.

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  14. When I land in Orlando, I’ll be checking the results to determine the winners. Two of these could still easily flip flop. Everybody vote again!

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  15. I’m on the Magical Express and voting is now closed!

    - Stitch and Figment ended in a flat-footed tie!! So I’ll just have to both of them. rats!

    - Chip ‘n’ Dale edged out Pinocchio, meaning that I’ll be tracking down the meddlesome duo.

    - Bag ‘o Crabs was a runaway winner. Stay tuned here and I’ll hopefully have a video up sometime on Wednesday!

    Thanks to everyone who voted and commented!

    Like

    • You must have checked into Pop Century by now! I’m very excited for you. Hopefully the crabs aren’t too nasty. Tell Chip and Dale I said “hey”. They are family favorites.

      You know what both Stitch and Figment have in common? Both rides feature nasty smells. Enjoy that. ;) On the upside, there is rarely a line for either one. And Figment is a quick ride although it feels longer than it is. For bonus points, you should sit through Captain Eo!

      Can’t wait to see the bag o’ crabs video.

      Like

  16. I don’t envy you eating the Bag ‘o Crabs!

    Have a safe trip.

    Like

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