Meet Our Neighbor! (Unless you can think of a better title)

The Disney Geeks are proud to present a new addition to our regularly scheduled blog posts: Meet Our Neighbor!

We have spent months designing GRE level questions, running them through focus groups, PR departments and high level officials with the NSA. Then we scrapped them and made up these questions to pose to our fellow Disney bloggers and podcasters. (By the way, we spent so much money coming up with the questions, that we blew our budget for the title. Can you help us come up with a new title?)

Our first victim, err, neighbor is Ray from Grumpy’s Hollow. Ray has the fortune to not only visit Walt Disney World annually, but he gets to make trips to Disneyland as well. He just finished a series of posts about his most recent trip to Disneyland. Ray has the photography bug (and a good eye) and has been known to spend a lot of time at Tim Devine’s The Magic In Pixels.

Alright–on with the questions!

  • What is your earliest Disney memory?

This is kind of sad to say, but my earliest Disney memory is sitting on Main Street, USA at Disneyland in Anaheim watching the Christmas parade. It was our tradition to go to Disneyland on Christmas Eve since we lived in Southern California. Well, I had turned around to say something to my parents and when I turned back around the Wicked Witch from Snow White was smack dab in my face offering me the poisoned apple. Well, she wasn’t and still isn’t one of my favorite characters. I broke out screaming in holy terror like I was in a Wes Craven horror flick. My parents told me that it took hours to calm me down. I was probably about 5 or 6. Apparently, my howling got my 3 year old brother joining in on the squawking My first non-traumatic Disney memory was riding Space Mountain with my dad. I think my dad is the one who instilled the love of Disney in me.

  • What is your single favorite attraction?
Oh, this is a tough one. I have so many rides that I MUST ride. But if you are putting a gun to my head, I’d have to say……….. Pirates of the Caribbean. Haunted Mansion comes a close second, but that song in Pirates just makes my toe tap.
  • What is your favorite Disney and non-Disney movie?
Disney: Emperor’s New Groove (Kronk rules!) Non-Disney: The Princess Bride (Vizzini: HE DIDN’T FALL? INCONCEIVABLE. Inigo Montoya : You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means. )
  • What is your least favorite park?
Disney’s California Adventure. I’m not a big fan of the whole boardwalk games and ride stuff. Pretty much the only thing I go to that side of the park for is California Screamin’ and the Catch-A-Flav ice cream stand. The rest could fall into the lake as far as I’m concerned. If you were really asking me about my least favorite park at WDW, then it would have to be Animal Kingdom. I think if I was alone, and the crowds were minimal (like in the off-season), I could get that park done in no time. MGM-Studios runs a close second, but it moves up the scale once you factor in all the little details they throw in there to photograph
  • What is your favorite park?
As much as I like Epcot, it appeals to a part of my psyche that I sometimes try to run away from… geeky side. So, when I go to WDW and want to be entertained, I must say that it is MGM-Studios. I think I could spend all day going between Rock N Rollercoaster, Tower of Terror, and MuppetVision 3D

  • Who is your favorite Disney character?
This is a toss up. I tend to more publicly align myself with Grumpy. I wear a Grumpy ball cap and have a few Grumpy T-Shirts (in fact I’m wearing one as I write this). But more privately, amongst my closest friends and family, I’m more known to be aligned with Scrooge McDuck. I am a cheapskate but when I must spend money, I like the best. My brother used to deride me when I was being cheap by telling my to go take a lap in my money vault. I collect both Scrooge and Grumpy Disneyana stuff. It’s just harder to find Scrooge stuff

  • What is your favorite Disney song?
Oh, you guys are really getting tough. It may not be a song, but the soundtrack to the Electric Light Parade (formerly the Main Street Electric Parade), is my most favorite and sparks all kinds of memories from my childhood. But, I can break it down even better

  • From a modern animated Disney movie: Hawaiian Roller Coaster Ride (From Lilo & Stich) – Come on, you have to admit it. You just want to sing along
  • Golden Age Animated movies (late 80’s – 90’s): Beauty & the Beast (From Beauty & the Beast) – That movie is a special one for my wife and I. It’s the first of the movies from this age that I saw after a long Disney hiatus and hooked me again. My wife just loves the songs and can name each one after a couple bars of music is played
  • Classic Disney Animated Movie: A dream is a Wish your Heart Makes (From Cinderella) – I don’t know, it’s just a classic
  • Non-Animated Disney Movie: The Ballad of Davy Crockett
  • If you could switch places with any historical or living Disney employee, who would it be and why?
If I get to maintain all the knowledge and memories of the person I’m switching with, it would be Marty Sklar. That guy has seen it all. He pretty much qualifies as a living AND historical Disney employee. I’m more into the Imagineering side of Disney than anything. Imagineers get to go to work and try to live up to one of my favorite quotes attributed to Walt Disney, “It’s kind of fun to do the impossible.”
  • What is you’re must eat food at WDW?
Honestly, unlike the people whose mouths water at the thought of getting a Dole Whip or munch on a turkey leg, I don’t have a favorite food at WDW. There is nothing that gives me a Pavlovian response when I think of it.
  • Favorite place to stay at WDW?

Animal Kingdom Lodge. The theming is extraordinary. I really get the feeling that I’m not on Disney property anymore once I get into the building

  • What is your favorite place to be at WDW?
Main Street, USA at the Partners statue at night after the park has closed and you have successfully dodged Disney Security who is desperately wanting you to leave. The lighting in both directions (facing the castle and facing the train station) makes me just fall in love with Disney every time.

  • What is your favorite restaurant?
Victoria & Albert’s. More specifically, the Chef’s Table at Victoria & Albert’s. But that’s is a place to get dressed up and dine. If I’m thinking about just plain eatin’ and where I’m most looking forward to make a second appearance to is Fulton’s Crab House.
  • What is the first thing you want to do on your next trip?
Ride the newly refurbished Haunted Mansion
  • What is your favorite fireworks show?
I’m now torn. I just saw the Remember Dreams Come True fireworks show at Disneyland and I must say that I think it edges out Wishes slightly.

Thanks, Ray. We appreciate the time and all of the great pictures.

We urge everyone to head over to Ray’s blog, Grumpy’s Hollow. Leave him a comment or two and share some of the Disney Community Love with him!

Don’t forget to stop by our site and leave some Disney Geek love!

7 thoughts on “Meet Our Neighbor! (Unless you can think of a better title)

  1. “…Animal Kingdom. I think if I was alone, and the crowds were minimal, I could get that park done in no time.”
    With no intended malice, I would comment that if your only goal was “to get that park done” then I believe you’ve missed most of what Animal Kingdom is about. My 1st trip to AK was with the same mentality; only after taking one of the fine backstage tours did I revisit (on several occasions) with a much deeper appreciation of all AK is about. After now having been to AK perhaps a dozen times, I still can’t say “I’ve got that park done,” and I can’t wait to go back in August and start all over again.

  2. ptsjr–thanks for all of the comments. It is why Andrew and I do this!

    I have to admit that I haven’t been to the Animal Kingdom since 2001. With two boys (and a world class zoo nearby) we spend most of the time letting the boys lead us at Disney World.

    It is by far one of the most beautiful parks. Attraction wise, it is a smaller park–but it is much grander than any other theme park.

  3. ptsjr,

    These questions are hard to answer without providing an essay response. Which if you have clicked on over to my blog, is my typical style.

    So, I took the approach to that question about which one brings me the most entertainment. Animal Kingdom doesn’t do that. Nor does Epcot. Those parks appeal to a different part of my brain.

    Now if you asked me which park I enjoyed the most from a photographic standpoint, then it would most likely have been Animal Kingdom because I wouldn’t be there for the purpose of the attractions.

  4. Dear Ray,
    Thanks for the explanation. I will click on your blog and will enjoy reading your thoughts in depth. I respect the fact that “name your favorite” is a format that can easily lead to ‘mile wide, inch deep’ surveys instead of depth. I’m glad you took the comment in the spirit in which it was intended, another refreshing difference between this blog and most others. Enjoy your day, sir.

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