Saturday, February 25, 2012

And I Looked Her in the Eye ...

So we're preparing for what seems like our umpteenth trip to "the happiest place on earth." I like Disney. But I don't LOVE Disney.

It's not because of the ridiculously long lines, or the tired, cranky kids. It's not because of the mediocre, overpriced food, or the cell block-sized "resort" rooms.

It's because of the characters. Namely the ones who do not wear masks, meaning you can look them in the eye.

My goal for this trip is to "break the fourth wall" with a Disney princess.

Before I sound like a cynical, jaded bee-yotch, let me assure you I am not (at least not all the time). I just want to get some little sign that there's a human underneath the layers and layers of foundation, lipstick and fake eyelashes.

I know Disney is all about the fantasy. When you're at "the World," fairies are real and an extremely oversized mouse wearing clown shoes is totally normal. Ariel spends more time out of the water than in it, and Captain Hook isn't so mean after all. It really is "the happiest place on earth."

But the characters canNOT be happy--at least not all the time. Those princesses spend hours greeting whiny kids, many of whom are too scared to even get close enough for a picture. They have to try to engage them in conversation while the parents urge their child to scoot closer, and then mom snaps a zillion photos, trying to get the perfect shot. The princesses must have quite the cheek muscles after smiling that long.

If an adult looks a princess in the eye, she doesn't so much as flinch. She maintains the facade no matter what. I know that is her job, but I really want to see a little wink or even an eye roll--some acknowledgement that underneath the make-up and scratchy dress is a working girl just putting in her time until her shift is over.

I guess I should be thankful there are people out there willing to put up this facade for the millions of wide-eyed kids under the Disney "spell." I know the look on Lauren's face when she met a Disney princess for the first time was truly priceless.

But I still sorta want to see Cinderella "snap." Maybe I really am jaded after all ...

C'mon, Tink, you cannot possibly be happy about those
shiny hose and that ball o' hair on top of your head.

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