Sunday, March 30, 2014

Disneyland Day 2 – In Which Darwin Would Have Loved this Place (Except for the Doritos).


Two examples of the Pink-Faced Permagrin Falcons. Read on to find out what that’s all about…

Before I get started on this I should say that the reason there is no mention of Jacob in any of these posts is because he is off on a three week trip to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands. So don’t go feeling sorry for him that he’s not here in Disneyland. And yes, he is having an amazing time by all accounts. It would appear however, that I have not successfully passed on the blogging gene, nor the emailing gene, or even the postcard gene as we have yet to hear from him directly. Thank goodness his teacher has been an excellent communicator so all is well.

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Jacob in the Galapagos.

I must admit I am a sucker for Disneyland. I love it. I love the annoying music blaring from the speakers 24/7, the Mickey Mouse shaped gardens planted with kale and carrots and herbs, the marching bands led by Mickey Mouse, the way all the employees line Main Street every morning with their Mickey Mouse hands on waving at everyone and saying “Good Morning”, the happy little fountains dancing away without a care in the world, the attentive staff where all you need to do is look slightly confused or perturbed and 50 people jump out of the shrubbery to assist you in any way they can.
One of the only disappointments to be had (for me anyway) was that that there was hardly a hilarious sign to be found the entire time I was there. And actually, for that matter, anywhere at all in the States. They seem to have mastered the concept of actually reading their signage before they put it out to make sure it makes sense. Too bad for me. (In fact, the only ones I found that were remotely funny were here in BC. More on that later.) These two signs were exceptions:


It’s a bit vague. Could they be more specific? What should I be avoiding? Doritos and Cotton Candy? Yeah I know about that. Don’t sniff the gasoline? Ok. Don’t pick up used needles? Alright. Anything else…?


This is a nice way of saying that if you have already eaten too many Doritos, (which way WAY too many people have already done in Disneyland by the way. Holy Doritos, people. LAY OFF ON THE DORITOS) you might not be able to fit in the car on Space Mountain. I can only imagine the meeting where they had to decide on the wording for this one.

Regardless of the lack of amusing signage, I did spend many a happy moment people-watching. Disneyland could easily be referred to as the Galapagos of L.A. mainly due to the fact that it is possible to view many different variations of one species all in one place. Of particular interest are the following:

  1. The Common Red-Necked Strollerpusher which can often be found surrounded by many members of its large extended family, all of whom take to cawing and chirping at the slightest upset, which appears to cause the Red-Necked Strollerpusher to take up its own chirping and cawing in an attempt to be louder than those around it. The Strollerpusher is usually burdened by a great many items, (including its apparent favourite, Doritos), which it wheels around in a large ‘stroller’ frequently taking up much of the room in any of the common areas where this species can be found.
  2. The garden variety Western Wailing Princess. This species, known for its propensity for sparkly, brightly coloured plumage and headwear, prefers a sitting or lying position on the ground and seems to suffer a weakness in its legs which stop it from standing or walking on its own. This posture is typically accompanied by a loud crying or wailing and demands for various sparkly plastic items and sugar-based food items. The parent of the species can often be observed either attempting to placate their young (with Doritos), or resorting to various forms of corporal punishment in an attempt to quiet their young. The Red-Necked Strollerpusher can often be found in the same habitat as the Western Wailing Princess .
  3. The Dude Dad. This species is fairly rare in the park and seems to have been mostly forced out of its habitat by the Red-Necked Strollerpusher. However, when spotted, the Dude Dad brings smiles to the faces of those around him as they observe his cheerful bearded countenance and long hair as he whoops and hollers with joy, running from ride to ride with happy abandon. The Dude Dad typically is unencumbered with strollers and other such items, preferring instead to carry his little ones on his shoulders, which frees up his hands for such items as a beer, or a bag of dried mango.
  4. The Snack-Toting BigMomma is found in great numbers in the park. Typically consumed with making sure her young never go hungry, she can be found carrying large quantities of snack items in containers of varying size and volume. The Snack-Toting BigMomma is able to produce such snacks as cucumber slices, cubes of cheese, fishy crackers, granola bars and peanut butter and jam sandwiches at a moments notice, and seemingly from nowhere, such is the skill of the
    Snack-Toting BigMomma.
  5. One of the most common species in the park is the
    Pink-Faced Permagrin Falcon whose silly grins and screams of delight can be spotted a mile away. They are often found in proximity to the Screaming Teenbird  which is usually found roaming in packs with matching plumage consisting of cut-off shorts, a flimsy hoodie of some kind, Keds, and black sparkly mouse ears.

Having said all this, the nice thing about D-Land is that everyone is in it together, and we are all just here to have a good time.

The only cause for concern was the alarming number of kids in the  6+ year range whose parents felt that they should still be ferried around in pushchairs. Seriously? Dude- your kid can walk.

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Add a bag of Doritos to the mix and the good old U.S. of A. is heading for some serious childhood obesity issues.

ANYWAY. We did go on some rides (all of them) so stay tuned for tomorrow’s hilarious pics of me apparently trying to break Zoe’s arm on the Hollywood Tower of Terror.

Thanks for reading,



Saturday, March 22, 2014

Disneyland Day 1: In Which There are Dogs on Planes (Economy Class) and we Hang Out in Salt Lake City.

(Please don’t expect much of this post – it is very tired and has been up for hours, poor thing.)

Yesterday was one of those really long days that started at 6 am and involved all types of transportation including ferry, bus, taxi, light rail, and plane, and then at the end of it, you are somewhere very far away from where you started and almost feel like you have had your holiday and would now like to go home. Of course, in the morning you wake up and it’s sunny and warm or whatever and suddenly it’s all better again.

At least, that is what happens to us humans, but until yesterday I had not spent one speck of time wondering what dogs think of all this travel business, and this is,I am quite sure, due to the fact that until then, I had never seen dogs going through security or waiting at departure gates, or hanging out in the bathroom at the airport. I mean seriously.

It all started with this little guy (I’ll call him Fluffy, cuz he was) who was obviously high on doggie-Ativan which was good as he didn’t notice that the gym bag he was in was slowly falling over.


He eventually tipped right over and just lay there, face wedged between the bars of the luggage cart, until his owner picked him up again.

He obviously had a successful flight to Salt Lake City though as we later saw him in the bathroom at the SLC airport, freshening up after his flight. Um excuse me, your dog is in the bathroom.


No seriously, wtf. Since when do dogs just get to travel willy-nilly on flights with humans? Don’t get me wrong I love dogs. Some of my best friends are dogs. But SINCE WHEN DOES A PITBULL GET TO FLY IN ECONOMY CLASS??

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Fortunately for me, this pitbull (I’ll call him Buffy) was waiting at the departure gate for a flight to Fargo, North Dakota, and not to Long Beach, LA like I was. I have to admit I didn’t actually see the dog get on the flight, but you cannot be at a departure gate unless you are flying, and Buffy was there waiting with his owner with all the other humans, then the flight was called, and everyone got on the plane, and then Buffy and his human weren’t there anymore. So you do the math. The other thing about this story is that another cute little fluffy dog (I’ll call him Muffy) was also getting on this flight.

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I don’t know if he knew about Buffy, but I for one was feeling nervous about how the whole multiple-dogs-on-a-flight thing was going to pan out. I couldn’t see how this was going to end well:

Carol the Flight Attendant: Can I get you a drink?

Buffy’s owner: No I’m good thanks I’m going to go to sleep.

Carol (to Buffy): How about you?

Buffy: No I’m good thanks I am going to go take a crap right here and then I thought I might eat that little fluffy dog in the next row.

Carol: Would you like peanuts?

Buffy: No thanks I’m allergic.

Carol: Have a nice flight.

Buffy: Woof.

But really, what do I know about Dogs on Planes?

Anyway, Zoe and I had more time than we thought so we decided to take a little jaunt into Salt Lake City, which we really enjoyed and proved to be plenty of time to visit the Temple (as in Mormon), see the Tabernacle where the famed choir sings, and do a spot of shopping. The city is in a striking location geographically speaking, set on a plateau in the middle of a ring of mountains.

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Zoe and I on the very convenient and easy to use Light Rail from the airport to town. Just sayin, Victoria.


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The Mormon Temple


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The Tabernacle where the choir signs with their Very Large Organ.

I must admit I was a bit disappointed not to see Napoleon Dynamite, or Bill and Nicky from Big Love. I’ll have to go back.

The rest of the day consisted of a short hop to LA, and a cab to our hotel where Zoe promptly fell asleep and I wrestled with an air conditioning unit that was last serviced in 1875.

Disneyland tomorrow!

Thanks for reading-