Press-Republican

Columns

August 26, 2012

It's a small world after all

It’s a world of laughter, a world of tears …

There are few people who enjoy the Walt Disney World theme parks more than I do. I first made the trek to Orlando, Fla., as a small child, and have returned many times since — as a teenager, as a college student, as a grown man, as a parent.

Something about the artificially clean, happy, surreal world of Disney always makes me feel like a kid again.

It’s a world of hopes, and a world of fears …

When friends and family visit Disney, I’m the person they turn to for advice: where to stay, what to eat, how to avoid the lines, which rides to go on, how to meet Tinkerbell live and in person. I am a walking guidebook.

While my love for the World of Disney is unquestioned, it is not blind, and it is not unequivocal. Amid the wonder and fantasy and dreams, there is a horror that has been allowed to survive far too long.

There’s so much that we share, that it’s time we’re aware, it’s a small world after all.

The It’s a Small World attraction is the blight of my Disney existence, a ride far more harrowing and frightening than, say, the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Fifteen minutes of pure living Disney heck.

Through proper channels I have suggested renaming it more correctly as the “It’s a Small World Boats of Eternal Doom,” but I have never once received a response from Disney.

For the uninitiated, It’s a Small World is a simple attraction that sends patrons on a short boat ride while hundreds of colorfully dressed Animatronic munchkins chant the “It’s a Small World” song in a variety of languages. Over and over.

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