Sunday, September 04, 2016

Disney's Hollywood Studios

I refer to it as the "once a year is plenty" park, and that remains true, somewhat, but they are trying. The Star Wars expansion will help a lot; it's by far the most fun part of the park now. After you've ridden Tower of Terror and the Rock 'n' Rollercoaster, there's always geeking out to a storm trooper parade. The small people weren't ready for T of T or the rollercoaster, so it was a day of Muppets in 3D, the Frozen singalong, and lots and lots of Star Wars.

I particularly loved the pic above after I saw it later. Embiggen and appreciate that the storm troopers appear to be walking in twos from the restrooms, led by what looks to my Catholic school trained eye to be the one they call Sister Death Star.

Delaney and her friend decided they'd meet Kylo Ren together.

This was NOT like getting an autograph from a Disney Princess! But they were brave!

They know how to use the Force:

Note that Kylo Ren looks suitably intimidated and baffled by the tiny Jedi.

The Frozen singalong was hilarious. The premise is that the two "official historians of Arrendelle" share the story and introduce song clips for singing along. We saw this a couple of years ago and it as cute, but in a safe, little kid Disney way. Yesterday's Official Historians were freaking hilarious: "Oh, they DIED! Like Bambi's mom and Simba's parents and...he rattled off a half dozen other "dead parent scenarios" from classic Disney movies until the grownups in the audience were howling and applauding, when he turned on us, "You people are CLAPPING FOR THIS??" Their commentary was like that. Nothing off-color at all of course, this is Disney, but their act was packed with sly not-so-innocent humor. They were awesome. I had to dig a tissue out of my purse to wipe my running mascara, and my daughter reached over to ask for one. Delaney didn't appreciate it much. She was sitting next to me and muttered under her breath about how they weren't respecting Queen Elsa. Queen Elsa appears at the end and freezes the room, and "snow" falls on everyone, and it's absolutely a blast. Another one of those kid things that, if you saw and liked the Frozen movie, you can do without a small child. It's a big theater, nobody will ever notice. ;-)

Today I went to IKEA alone - my daughter wasn't feeling it after a long hot day at Disney. I wasn't really either, but was determined to fulfill my urges for a few small items. I skipped the main floor entirely and used the double door cut-through to housewares. I bought a teapot, a glass carafe with a silicone seal that I hope will work for transporting iced tea or coffee concentrate to the office, new cheap cork coasters, a roll of lovely floral gift wrap on clearance for .99, some cookies, half a dozen cute .49 tealight holders, and my big purchase of the day: a really cool adjustable desk lamp I just had to have.

That teapot - it's this one is just what I wanted. I want to, as the wise philosopher Kermit the Frog said in the commercials, Be More Tea. I love tea and prefer it over coffee, but I drink coffee on weekday mornings for two reasons: 1) massive caffeine infusion standing by, all I need to do is pour; and 2) Mr. Coffee has it ready when I roll out of bed around 5:20-ish. Tea requires attention. You can make a ritual out of coffee, to be sure - you can grind your beans and fuss over your water quality, and you will get a much more special cup of coffee. Not that I would notice the difference at 5:20 a.m., when my zombie brain is just staggering toward the smell, moaning, "Coffee..."

Tea, OTOH, requires your presence, or at least your attention, which is usually not too focused at o-dark-thirty. Tea has to be timed, you can't just pour water over the bag and walk away and whatever happens, happens, like they do on TV in the US. What usually happens when you do that is a nasty bitter mess. One of the things that drives me slightly crazy about TV and movie staging is that they've taught people that it's okay to leave the teabag in the cup while drinking! Now, it is okay for some types of tea - herbal teas don't usually care - but if you leave a "regular" tea bag in your cup you will end up with "stewed" tea that's as bitter and nasty as a Trump voter's soul, and not at all the way the tea is supposed to taste. Not to mention that adding milk or sweetener to a cup with a tea bag in it is kind of bizarre. But I digress.

So making a decent cup, or pot for that matter, of tea in the morning always feels like too much work to me. And I'm not saying that this new teapot (unlike the ones I already own) will somehow give me the patience to make tea on a work day. I think Mr. Coffee will still be my go-to guy for the magic beverage that keeps me from washing my hair with the body wash, on week days. But on non-working days, yes, I prefer a nice, non-stewed, properly made pot of tea.

This pot needs a tea cozy. Fortunately, I just happen to have a way to make one of those things.

And - this is truly a rare and exciting phenomenon - I've enjoyed a weekend of Disney and an IKEA visit, and I still have - wait for it - TWO MORE DAYS OFF!!!! Whooo!!!

I have no idea what I will do for the next two days! This is almost unheard of luxury in my world.


Anonymous said...

Because Ernst is not a tea drinker (except for Green Tea), I use loose tea in a tea ball and make it in the mug.
Love Chai with a teeny bit of honey - instant Chai is mostly sugar and disgustingly sweet.

Only keep tea bags for one or two visitors that I know actually PREFER tea bag tea. Strange souls!

There is a delightful little specialty tea shop a pleasant excursion distance from home - except for the visitors mentioned above I no longer buy supermarket tea.

Tea - the cup that cheers and not inebriates - I remember that on a post when I was a child.

Gae, in Callala Bay

Catherine said...

Two things my gram taught me: hot the pot, and don't let it stew. I do have bags but they are the fancy roomy ones that you treat as loose. I also have loose tea.

Have you read the Emelia Peabody books? "Tea, the genial beverage..." though she mostly preferred something harder.

Anonymous said...

Emelia Peabody - no, never seen them in an Aussie bookshop, will check on Kobo.

Gae, in Callala Bay

Catherine said...

Amelia Peabody - I have no idea why I misspelled her name. The author is Elizabeth Peters. It's a series of very tongue in cheek detective stories featuring a Victorian lady archaeologist.

Anonymous said...

So that's why it sounded vaguely familiar, but I couldn't find it. Have read several on the Kobo. What a hoot!

Gae, in Callala Bay

Catherine said...

I adore those books, they are my guilty pleasure junk food reading. They're hilarious and interesting, and even the minor characters are fully developed. I've read some of the author's other books (she had several pen names) and they are all like that, but it's obvious that "Peabody" was her favorite character. I love how she captured the overwrought sentimentality of Victorian lady fiction in Amelia, then developed it into a very progressive family story as the years go by. She also wrote a short series of now somewhat dated "ghost story" books as Barbara Michaels. I can't remember all the titles, but there's "Ammie, Come Home" (a ghost story set in Washington DC) and then the same characters return in a couple of books about historical clothing. The same well-developed and fun "minor" characters. Oh, they're called "Shattered Silk" and "Stitches in Time." I introduced my daughter to her books and she enjoyed them very much, so they stand up to the test of time.