Imagine, if you will…

Disney’s California Adventure, 2017. Amid the glitz and the glimmer of a bustling, young theme park at the height of its golden age, Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! was a thing; a beacon for the shareholder elite.

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Come break more of The Collector’s shit

Yes folks, it is official. As of a few hours ago at SDCC (San Diego Comic-Con), it was announced that The Hollywood Tower Hotel – Tower of Terror is going to be going under a transformation. Summer of 2017 it will re-open as an ‘all new attraction’ that’s being called Guardians of the Galaxy – Mission: BREAKOUT! which is a mouthful, to say the least. But, to be fair The Hollywood Tower Hotel Tower of Terror, or THTHTOT, is not much better. I’m sure this will be casually called Mission: Breakout or just Breakout. Which makes me think of a much better Wreck-It Ralph attraction idea. That’s not important right now. What is important is the validity and severity of emotions that are currently being felt all across the nation and possibly the world over as well. I personally have only had the chance to ride the DCA version of Tower a few times.

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16 year old me and infamously eternal bellhop T.J.

However, being a Florida native with a parent who has worked at Walt Disney World for the last 24 of my 26 years, I have been on the WDW version a literal countless number of times. In fact, one day about 10 years ago now, I decided I wanted to do an experiment. I wanted to see just how many times I could ride ‘Towah’ as it is so affectionately known by a select few. From park opening to closing, including zero bathroom breaks, I rode that ride. I honestly just did not have to go to the restroom. That’s probably not healthy and may explain some…… anyway. 33.5 times. Yes, you read that correctly. 33.5 times. Point five?! Listen, and I’m not even trying to pull your leg, but I got stuck on the 13th ride up. All the way at the top of the drop shaft. The… 13th floor perhaps? Nope, just the fifth dimension.

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Totally different fifth dimension

It was for sure creepy. So yeah, 33.5 times. I was a kid that had nothing better to do. It was a lot of fun. But anyway back to the point…

I think that the things and concepts – explained by one of my Walt Disney Imagineering (WDI) personal heroes Joe Rohde – in the video below sound like it would be an awesome attraction. Somewhere else. That was my first reaction when I had heard the news. After giving it some thought, I completely understand why they are doing it this way. Though it doesn’t mean I have to like it. However the flip side to that attitude is that if I don’t like it I don’t have to go ride it. There are plenty of other people who are paying good money to experience this. And let’s be honest, I am going to ride this. I actually look forward to it. It’s weird. Something as iconic yet as trivial as a theme park attraction can carry a lot of weight. It’s not just a ride. But at the same time that’s exactly what it is. And that’s the key here. Remembering that this really is what Walt envisioned. In a way…

“Disneyland will never be completed. It will continue to grow as long as there is imagination left in the world.” — Walt Disney

And boy is there ever. I really think this can be a great thing if we let ourselves let it be. Can they screw it up? Of course that is a possibility. That’s always been the case, however. It’s just the fact that when the hits start to outnumber the flops, people start to forget about the flops. Except Stitch’s Great Escape. There’s always an exception to the rule. I’m mourning the loss of one of the best attractions on the west coast. But at the same time I am opening my mind for the new things that are coming. I mean worse case scenario we are still getting Star Wars land. So you know… up the fuck you can shut.

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This is my new desktop wallpaper

You are about to discover what lies beyond the fifth dimension, beyond the deepest, darkest corner of the imagination… to awesome mix vol. 1.

Believe in Peace (Originally a Facebook post)

Sometimes it can feel like the world around us is getting scarier or more of a messed up place to raise a child. Sometimes I think it has always been this scary and messed up, if not worse in the past. We just never have been as in tune and turned on to everything around us – and more so of what isn’t immediately surrounding us – as we are now. Social media breeds awareness. I can remember a simpler time when you didn’t have to worry about this or that. A time when a horrific news story shocked the nation once in a blue moon. A stark contrast to today’s game of headlines. I’m extremely privileged to have grown up in the technological boom of the 90s. But I think with all of the recent events here at home in our nation – as well as worldwide – that we have been beginning to take our technologically-filled lives for granted. I can remember “Skyping” my grandparents on a landline video-phone back in the day. We were over 3k miles apart but brought together both sonically and visually within a few minutes of buffering. Boy how times have changed, right? And I know this point of view may not offer much in the way of assurance, but keep reading.

So what’s my point? In times of such loss, pain, terror and confusion I think sheer pessimism is the apex of perpetual sadness and anger. Should we feel angry about some of these things? Sure, but that only does so much good. From the togetherness of people came great technology, and from that technology came social media, which – as I previously stated – breeds awareness, often times by way of anger. Awareness is vital in finding the equilibrium of social justice and peace. Now that we are aware, now that we’ve been rudely awakened by such ugly displays of the nastiest human behaviors, where do we go from here? I don’t have an exact answer for that. But I do know that the path to enlightenment is not marked nor is it an easy path to walk. However, if we really want to progress forward down that path we sometimes need to stop for a moment and look back to remind ourselves just how far we’ve already come. Pessimistic views may have their validity rooted in a monochromatic, yes or no, good or bad environment, but in the grand scheme of things there really are far too many shades and hues to fit inside the lines of negativity. Be angry, but be hopeful. Stand up for what you believe in, but do so beneath a vail of aspiration. We can make a better tomorrow and we must. I don’t believe there’s is a meaning to life as in a “Why are we here?” sort of way, and forgive me if this is where your religion says different. I’m not in anyway trying to discredit or devalue your faith. It is just my belief is that we are here because of nothing. I mean that there is no answer as to why we are here. However the meaning of life is whichever you assign to yours. Simply put, life is what you make it. If the world is going to Hell in a hand basket then surely it is. But if we haven’t finished evolving or growing as a species, if we can admit that we have more to learn, then there will always be more time to gain acceptance, tolerance, and love.

In a scary environment it is easy to put up your defenses and that behavior has served us well before. Fight or flight. It’s literally human nature. But in a societally scary environment isolation and deflection is fatal to human togetherness. There will always be those who need the kind of help that we won’t yet know how to provide. But as long as we stand together with open hearts and most importantly opened minds we might just have a shot at this peace thing. Believe in hope. Believe in love. Believe in peace.✌🏻

Shit

I did it again. I’ve neglected this blog. I could say I have been busy with work but that’s a shit excuse. Everybody is always busy with work. But I have been busy with work. In any case I’d like to get back to blogging regularly. It’s good to have hobbies and creative expression. When the two commingle it can be very therapeutic. “Oh therapy can you please fill the void?” So what has been new with me? Well in just a couple of days I will be attending my on-campus orientation at my school. That’s where I’ll get my ID and when I can start to register for fall classes. Also, I recently had the opportunity to attend a concert. A friend of mine and I made the commute out to Tampa to the MidFlorida Amphitheater to see Marilyn Manson and Slipknot, with Of Mice and Men opening. The show was a lot of fun. I was most excited to see Manson, although I do enjoy a few Slipknot tracks as well. I’ve heard of Of Mice and Men but never heard their music. They had a lot of energy and the fans seemed to fire it right back at them. I’m glad I really got to go. It has given me the concert bug again. I want to try and go to as many shows as I can afford this year. The upcoming shows I’d like to go to are Slayer & Anthrax at the Hard Rock in Orlando, as well as Korn and Breaking Benjamin at the very venue in Tampa I was at the past weekend.

If I’d have to take my pick, which my wallet may very well enforce, I would most like to attend the Korn show in Tampa. This last show was lawn tickets which were really not that bad of a view. However I’ve really wanted to see Korn since they came to that same venue, ironically, back with Snoop Dogg. I didn’t have any money then as I was just a teenager so I didn’t get the chance to go. So for this show I’d really like to get a ticket for the pit. I’m not planning on moshing or “slam dancing” as some kids call it. But I do enjoy getting an up close view of the musicians as they play the songs we’ve all heard a million times. Also it’s way more personal and intimate. The current cheapest price for the pit I can find is about $93 after taxes and fees. The fees could be tickets themselves. But I digress. Perhaps I should go to the box office to save some coin. It may be worth the trip.

In other news, I currently have a kitten curled up on my lap and nearly sleeping. She’s not normally like this. So I’m going to take advantage of it. I’ll see you all on the flip side.

Updates n Stuff

Hello again WordPress. So sorry it’s been a while since I’ve posted… yet again. I’ve been busy now that I’m back at work and I haven’t had much time – or the mental capacity – for pressing words. But I’m back, for now. So what’s new with me? Well I thought you’d never ask. I’ve started to figure out a little bit more of what I will be doing for my first two years of college. I have sort of a guide map planned out. That’s something I never do. And this time is no different. My dear friend helped me pick classes from the course list of each required subject. That list is pictured below.

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I think from that list I am most excited for Art Appreciation, Botany as well as Latin. I’ve always wanted to learn a new language and why not Latin? It pretty much invented other languages. That should be fun. I’m really not looking forward to Math but that’s always been the case for me. Who knows, maybe it will be easier for me now that I’m doing it because I want to. Not because I have to. College professors could care less if you want to just fuck off for the semester. It’s your money and time that’s going to be wasted, not theirs. So I think me pushing myself to do good in school is going to help me let that happen. If that makes sense. Thursday I’ll be heading to campus to have a required in-person meeting with one of the financial aid advisers. I’m thinking that I earn too much money from work to qualify for any grants. But who knows. I’m lucky in that my work offers tuition reimbursement for general education degrees so that’s significantly helpful. Especially if I don’t qualify for financial aid.

So other than school another thing that is new with me is that I’ve begun to plan my next vacation out to California. I am so lame. I always go there when I go on vacation. I’ll either travel solo to California or I take a “staycation” and stay at home and do nothing. Last time I went out there it was to visit with my ailing grandmother who has since passed away. This time it will be a much happier, lighter occasion. I’m going to be visiting my family. I hope to go for at least two weeks in October. I want to be able to spend my brother Sam’s birthday with him. Also it’s just another time of year I’ve never been out there before. I was there last November this most recent time. I actually flew back home the day of the Paris bombing. Which is also when my grandmother passed. It was like she waited until I got home safely in this crazy fucked up world. It was sad but comforting at the same time. Weird how that can work out that way.

Finally, I am going to save up for driving lessons soon. I am 26 years old and still to this day have no driving experience. I need to get on this. Blogging about it does actually help me stay motivated and focused on actually accomplishing it. But actions speak louder than words. Even pressed ones. The thought of driving makes me quite anxious. But so does a lot. Which is another thing I think I need to get a better handle on before I get behind the wheel anyway. I’ve got to make a new appointment with my doctor so we can try and find me a new medication or treatment plan for my persistent anxiety. It doesn’t always show up but oh God when it does it is bad. It can be paralyzing. Which is not good when it happens at work. But that’s another post entirely. So for now, to sum up… school, California, driving lessons, and anxiety meds… oh my!

Happy Freaking Birthday

This will be my final post while being 25 years old. That’s right folks, your valiant hero is over the hill of his 20’s as of tomorrow. Turning 26 isn’t really that big of a deal. Except that my 20’s are more than half way over now. That kind of terrifies me. I need to get into better shape this year. And get my driver’s license and start driving. Having goals that are completely obtainable is good. I have to go back to work tomorrow. It’s actually my Monday. Happy freaking birthday. But it’s a good, albeit stressful job. I like money, so I find ways to manage the stress. This is another post from my new iPhone. It’s really awesome. I’m currently listening to the album Yellow House by Grizzly Bear on Apple Music as I type out this post. Pretty good blogging music, and just for listening to in general.

My cats are at it again. They don’t see eye to eye. The little one just wants to play, as little ones do. The older one just wants to sleep all day, as I do. But it’s kind of fun watching them run around. They don’t hurt each other which is good. The other day we had to move all the furniture out of the master bedroom due to a plumbing problem. We should be getting new carpet installed today. Hopefully it’s today as I can’t work while it’s being installed. Is install the right word? Do they install carpet? Either way that’s what should be going down today. I brought it up because the cats have been sleeping on the mattress which is against the wall on its side. It’s pretty adorable. See for yourself…


And I think I’ll end the blog with Ohana here. Enjoy your Wednesday, folks!

Hey Siri…

Last week I ordered my first iPhone. I’m actually blogging from it right now. It’s the iPhone 6, 64GB space gray, unlocked. I got it for the unbeatable price of free. I have very nice perks and discounts through work so I was able to sort of stack a couple of discounts. It arrived in the mail on Wednesday the 20th. This is the second Apple product I’ve ever owned. The first is my video iPod from 2007. Still works too. Despite my current career choice I’ve never considered myself to be an Apple fanboy or anything. Still don’t either. I do love their products and I’m very happy with my job. So far this iPhone is the best smartphone I’ve had yet. But that’s not surprising when you consider the fact that all previous phones where $50 or less. Yes I know this one was free but it’s still valued at about $649.

I’m still adapting to iOS even though I have extensive training in it. It’s totally different when you’re able to get hands on. I actually am enjoying blogging from a handheld device more than I thought I would. Certainly more so than I would have from my last phone. It was an LG something or other. I like the fact that I was able to get the unlocked model. I like the flexibility that provides me. I have a prepaid service that’s only $35 a month for 4GB of data, unlimited calls and texts. I’m almost always on Wi-Fi anyways so the data rarely gets that close. Anyway I’m going to end this blog here but I’ll give you a little nugget of Siri goodness. 

Merely Players

Lights! Camera! Action!…

are words to live by. As I sit here and type this I am listening to the incredible soundtrack to Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The legendary John Williams and his orchestra score this film, along with all the others in the saga, so perfectly. Having recently purchased The Force Awakens on Blu-ray, I have watched it a handful of times, in addition to seeing it in theaters twice. This is one of those films that apparently inspires a blogger to blog. But more than that it inspires me to become more infatuated with the idea of acting and film making in general. Ever since I was a little kid I’ve always entertained the idea of one day being an actor or director. Actually, I really wanted to be a child actor on a Disney Channel show. I believe I’ve mentioned that before on this blog. But now as my 26th birthday approaches, I can’t help but notice that this feeling has not gone away. In fact, as I’ve gotten older and exposed to more and more art in the world around me it has only gotten stronger. But what do I do with that? Blogging at 4 in the morning isn’t going to take me anywhere near a set or even an audition.

I think Sylvia Plath said it best; ‘The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.’ And boy how true that is. Probably the biggest reason I haven’t gone anywhere or done anything with this desire to act is because of my increasingly abundant supply of self-doubt and exceedingly absent self-confidence. They always say fake it ’til you make it. At first you wouldn’t think that applies to acting but when you really start to think about it, isn’t that what acting is? I mean, on the surface anyway. You’re pretending to be somebody – or something – other than yourself. It’s make-believe and we’ve all done it from an early age well into adulthood. It’s human nature to act. Old Bill was on to something. All the world really is a stage. That’s not to say that real life doesn’t exist or that there aren’t consequences to every action. But when there’s so much horribleness in the world around you, you have to put on a brave face – a mask – and push through it. It’s something you react to, just like acting. And I don’t want to come off as if I know what I’m talking about. I really don’t. Anybody reading this who may be an actor or another person of experience in the field may be able to see my naivete on the matter. And to those of you who fit this profile, I ask you to leave your wisdom in the comments. How does one best break out of their shell? How do you stop the negative thinking and pessimistic outlook on the creative endeavor? If someone has talent but no confidence do they really have talent at all? This reminds me of a Green Day lyric from the song “When I Come Around“; ‘You may find out that your self-doubt means nothing was ever there. You can’t go forcing something if it’s just not right.‘ But by the same token, Mr. Armstrong, you also can’t find out that you’re forcing it if you don’t even try it. And that’s where I am at the moment. I want to try it. I want to break out of my shell and step on stage. I’ve been on stage a few times in my life. And each time it has been an incredible feeling. I’ve never done hard drugs but I feel like being on stage or performing in anyway gives you the same high that one might have to chase from drugs. It’s exciting and sends chills down your spine. And you want that feeling to continue, so you do it again and again and again. What a healthy drug performance art can be. Art in general, really.

So I guess the point of this post is to express how I’d like to try acting. I don’t really wish to “make it” so much as I wish to just do it. (Nike, your check is in the mail). I know it’s a hard business but as a passion, as a craft it’s a labor of love. I just need to figure out how to place faith in myself and manifest the necessary gumption to go out and audition. There are many things that I must accomplish before that process can even begin. But I feel as though if there’s a will, there’s a way. My will is strong, it’s just getting the confidence to match it that’s the trick. You never know what’s out there waiting for you until you get off of your ass and make things happen for yourself. So be true to your passions and interests, folks. Don’t wait for something incredible to happen. If it’s worth your passion, it’s worth your time and effort as well. Be good out there, and break a leg!