Yes, I know the movie takes place in France, but you can’t spell “Patriot” without “art” (which, conveniently enough, is an anagram of “rat” which is why I added the last minute flag over my careful shading).
HAPPY FOURTH OF JULY!
Today is “Autism Awareness Day,” the day people change their profile pictures to puzzle pieces or blue light bulbs to “raise awareness,” but mostly because it makes these people feel good about themselves. Congratulations, you’re my new hero.
I don’t need people to be “aware” of me. Go through my archives, people are aware enough of me as it is. I want people to ACCEPT me not as some cripple they can abuse but AS me. In fact, I try to be both aware of and accepting of the people around me.
For instance, I saw Zootopia yesterday – a movie about accepting people’s differences – and there was a hot boy figuratively speaking – and probably literally too as it was almost 90 degrees outside – in his late-20s flailing manically in his wheelchair outside the theater in Disney Springs and while he wasn’t “talking” per se, he was making a lot of noise. Unfortunately, by the time I figured out something to say to him, he and his family were gone. In other words, this was Epcot all over again.
The movie let out at 4:35pm. Fortunately, the AMC is on the Westside “neighborhood” so it was a relatively simple walk back to the Lynx stop at the edge of the parking lot. I wasn’t finished with my churro when the bus arrived, so I was hungry when I got off at the “transfer stop” at SeaWorld. Restaurants in the immediate area are a tad scarce, so I went back to the room to see what was in my fridge, sighed and headed back out in the wilds.
I was seated a few minutes after arriving at the restaurant, and my hot red headed server spoke with a slow, flat voice. I wasn’t sure if he was flirting with me or just bored…or maybe he was just unemotional and trying very hard to enunciate each word. I did hear him try to make a joke with some Dutch tourists at the table behind me, but it sounded more forced than funny and I’m guessing he knew that as he apologized awkwardly and rushed off.
The next time I saw him was when he delivered my entrée, it wasn’t his fault that said entrée was bland and lukewarm, but he was attentive and though his voice remained stoic, he seemed genuinely sorry when he came back to tell me they were out of the pie I ordered for dessert. Maybe it was a suggestive sell, but when I gave him my “second choice,” his face lit up as he said that was favorite item on the menu (tbf, he didn’t do it with my first choice). Unlike previous visits, said pie was warm and soft (maybe it was just because of the hot ginger delivering it) with the only cold aspect of it being the special dessert spoon he carefully laid on top of my napkin.
I’m not implying anything untoward about either of the aforementioned individuals, I’m just saying I was aware of and chose to accept them. That’s why I’m not posting those silly light bulbs or puzzle pieces. The former implies I should be sad about something… or are they saying that this “awareness” is only a special limited time engagement before we go marching back into our little storage pods where the rest of society doesn’t have to think about us for another year? Which is the reason I dislike the puzzle piece campaign too: it implies I’m “incomplete” and since the purpose of said campaign is to raise money for a cure that will make society accept me.
The problem is, the word “cure” implies that there is something “wrong” with Autistic people that needs curing (we’ve presumably already been vaccinated) …. unless they mean that we’re raw meat that needs to rubbed down with salt to preserve our flavor. Why would you do that, when sodium-peroxide (better known as bleach) presumably works much better – particularly since you don’t have to worry about “preserving” someone after they’ve been murdered cremated. It’s not like she had a “future” anyway, but, at least, you can give the remains to another family to give to their kids: after all it can’t possibly be any more harmful to them some “evil” life-saving vaccine.
Basically, I don’t want mere “awareness” – I just want ACCEPTANCE. Period. I’m not broken, sick or “missing a few pieces.” I am me, and I’m okay with that. The question is: are you?
Tuesday – I think I’ve already covered this one.
Wednesday – Decided that as much as I’d like to attend LEGOland’s “Christmas Bricktacular” or “SeaWorld’s Christmas Celebration,” that I’m probably done taking photos for the season. I still have photos from Boardwalk, Disney Springs and other places I haven’t posted yet.
Thursday – Finally got around to seeing The Good Dinosaur. It lived up to its title: not great but not as bad as I’d feared it would be. ** ½ out of 5
Oh yeah, I should probably mention this:
Today: One year ago today, I moved to Orlando.
I know my headline reads “Disney Disappointments,” but can I start with some GOOD news?
I decided to renew my lease at Sea Isle Apartment Homes for another year!
I made it official this afternoon by turning in my renewal form to the leasing office (or I would have if I hadn’t misplaced it, but I was given a shiny new lease to sign… with an even shinier new rent).
Anyway, I left the club house and made my way to the bus stop at Sea Harbor and Academic Drives using my white DVC hat with the frayed rim to shield my eyes from the approximately 100 feet of unshaded sidewalk on my way towards the LYNX stop where the bus towards Disney arrived ten minutes behind sched- wait, this is a city bus that’s probably as close to being “on time” as they get.
The first thing I did when I sat down was to put on the sweatshirt (movie theaters – and every other building in Florida for that matter – are always freezing cold) putting my hat on the seat next to me while I pulled the blue Disney hoodie over my head.
I walked off the bus at the Disney Springs station with a half dozen other passengers and was nearly blinded by the strong afternoon sun.
“Where did I put that stupid hat,” I said out loud feeling the empty pocket of my sweatshirt as the dull green bus pulls away from the curb.
It was already 2pm so I didn’t really have time to get anything serious to eat before my 2:30 show time. I stopped at the first place I could see to get a quick snack on my way towards the theater which ended up being a bag of “Cinnamon Bites” that was considerably larger than I was expecting.
“Actually the 2:30 screening of The Martian is in 3D. The next normal screening is at 3:30, is that what you want to do?”
Anyway, now that I have a full hour and a quarter to play with, I made my through the dense crowd towards the World of Disney Store. I wasn’t looking for hats (I have a half dozen back at the apartment), but I was looking for a pair of men’s sandals that I bought at DAK back in December.
“Wait, black with grey rubber bottoms,” the woman at the tiny Information desk asked cutting me off at “sandals.” “Yeah, I know exactly what you want.”
She disappears into a backroom and comes back with “there is nothing available matching that description ANYWHERE on property. Sorry, we are out of stock and it doesn’t appear as if we will be restocking them anytime soon. Who knows, it’s October, maybe if you check back in the Spring we may have them, but not today. Sorry, next in line…”
That was a bust, now I only have…an hour before my screening. Let’s see, ATM, restroom and, oh, Guest Services – which is conveniently around the corner from where I came out – AND it had a line. This was definitely promising…
I went inside and was greeted by a young Latin American woman with an accent (didn’t catch her name as I have no reason to look at that region) holding a large electronic device (I thought it was a clipboard when I first saw her) who immediately asks how she can assist me.
Unfortunately between her accent and the noise level of the tiny waiting room, we were pretty much speaking past each other for most of the conversation. Not that people understand me in quiet rooms either, but she was making an effort. She offered to let me wait in line “for 20 minutes or so,” but I decided against it because I didn’t think they could help me either…
Wait, it’s been almost two months since I posted a photo essay on what was then “Downtown Disney.” I felt around my sweatshirt again (I put it back on when I entered World of Disney), and it was still empty because my camera was still sitting on my desk back at the apartment.
I considered asking the guys at the DVC kiosk if they knew where I could get a replacement hat, but I got the feeling that would involve a 90 minute lecture and a $10,000 dollar deposit – neither of which I had at the moment. Thirty minutes I could spare, and I spent most of it sitting outside the theater pretending to be interested in stupid cat videos and generic “inspirational” memes that always ended with “like and share if you agree.”
That’s right, people love being ordered around by generic memes that totally and accurately describe them as a person because it makes them unique and special to share banal observations that 10k other users have shared before them. If you agree with the post – which would be anyone with a pulse – you MUST “like and share” that’s a rule and you cannot argue with it. Well, fuck you, I’m not doing either!
Yes, sadly enough, it’s the only power trip I’m “allowed” to have. Hey, ten minutes before show time, and if the crowds inside are as bad as the ones outside than I might need all of them even though I saw a man on my way into the cinema turn away disgustedly when the cashier told him the movie was “two and a half hours long” (neglecting to mention twenty-five minutes of previews).
I walked into the theater expecting an Interstellar level disaster, except, wait, I’m not reviewing movies anymore. I have my popcorn ready and I’m already wearing my sweatshirt so go ahead, entertain me…
I got off the Circulator and walked back over to the Tent Village where I caught a shuttle to the Single Carrot Theater in Remington. I’ve never actually been inside this new building, but their new space was a LOT bigger than the architectural drawings I saw at their temporary venue on Charles Street made it look.
The show started on time and without issue. Unfortunately, I had a very loud dry cough for most of the week (it was what woke me up both times at yesterday’s screening) and about midway through the show I checked my pocket and discovered I was out the cough drops I put there before I left. I had no choice, I pulled my bag out and as I carefully fished a few out trying to make as little noise as possible and just as I had a few in my hand I could feel a HARD slap against my left knee.
“WOULD YOU QUIT MAKING SO MUCH DAMNED NOISE,” the woman in front of me said in a low threatening growl with her waving finger shoved an inch from my nose. “I’M TRYING TO WATCH A DAMNED MOVIE!”
Apparently, she knew that I wasn’t even though I was, but it’s okay as her act of aggression was completely justifiable because, well, I’m me and abusing me is somehow okay. Me treating someone else like that is NOT okay, but those are the “rules” and I’m not allowed to object to them. I never have been, and today wasn’t a good idea to do to try it.
“I’m getting a cough dr-“ I said quietly, my knee still hurting from her assault on it.
“SHUSH,” the woman next to her said. “NO TALKING DURING THE FILM!”
I never even got to put the cough drop in, but the good news my cough went away. I spend the next 35 minutes feeling that hand burned into my knee as the people around me shouted at me in my head. If I wasn’t seated in the middle of my row I would have left 20 minutes ago, but now it was impossible without enflaming people anymore.
The movie finally ended, and the director led a somewhat dull Q&A which the angry finger pointing lady didn’t stay for. I won’t spoil the film for you as well, but I will say I already told you the most interesting part of this screening.
My next screening was also at SCT so I took the opportunity to attempt to gather up my thoughts on the movie itself – not on the screening just on the movie itself…but I couldn’t. My knee stung like hell, and I kept worrying someone was going to recognize me from the show and punch me too.
An hour passes and I went back into the theater, once again I was near the middle of my row. Fortunately, this film was much better, even if that damned cough did return about a third of the way through.
There was another dull Q&A afterwards, and then I took the shuttle back to MICA. I tried getting a slice of pizza at Two Boots, but the line was too long so I took the train back to Baltimore Street. When I got off, I realized it was almost 7:30 and I hadn’t eaten since noon so I got a 6” sandwich and a cookie before heading back to the hotel.
When I got to the lobby I could see people getting off the elevator I had been on earlier and to my surprise it took me to my floor without issue. I opened the door to my room, threw my bag on the bed and prepared for a shower. As I took my shorts off, I noticed the seam had split slightly at the crotch so I threw them away making room in my bag for the item I didn’t buy. Whatever, I’d worry about that in the morning, but first I have a pair of reviews to write…
I got to the light rail stop on Baltimore Street around 4pm and when I got to the ticket vending machine I could hear an old black man singing Bob Marley slightly off key to himself coming up from my south. As I’m putting my money into the machine I can literally feel him breathing on my neck.
“Do you mind? I’m trying to do something here.”
“Ain’t no-one gettin’ yo way, I just here to collect my change from dat ‘chine chu at.”
“Could you at least find somewhere else to stand?”
“Wha day hell wrong wit chu, boy?”
Perfect, now I have to explain a disease I was never officially diagnosed with to someone who more than likely only “asked” that as an insult. I collect my ticket AND my change (since I had to get back somehow) from the tray and crossed over to the northbound track as my “friend” ranted on.
“Bah,” he said waving his hand dismissively as he continued up the street. “Nah wooomah nooo cryyyyy.”
The train arrives. I get off at Mt Royal and head into the Barnes & Noble where I accidently insulted the barista working there while trying to make small talk. I try to come up with a way to apologize and/or explain when the manager appears, and asks what I want to drink. When I tell her, she cuts me off with a giant smirk saying:
“Decaf? Oh darn, we are compleeeetely out of decaffeinated beans. Looks like you’ll have to go SOMEWHERE ELSE for your beverage! Sorry about that, have a nice day.”
“Yes, I will,” I said ignoring her retaliatory display.
We BOTH knew there is no such thing as “decaffeinated beans,” but I might as well let her think she “won.”
Besides, my film was in 20 minutes, I could just head to the venue and find a seat…which was a pretty good idea as said screening was nearly sold out (something I take partial credit for). Fortunately, it was only an hour long and I found myself in the shortest Chipotle line I’d ever encountered in Baltimore.
With that formality out of the way, it was time to get back (yes, the room was turned this time) and hammer out my thoughts on my second film and rewrite the review from this morning. This was going to be a long night…
Note: I missed the first full day of the Maryland Film Festival due to a delayed flight. I was supposed to see my first show at 7:15 that evening, but I didn’t land at BWI until 9:45pm so my coverage is a tad abbreviated – particularly since it was cheaper to leave on Sunday (actual last day of the festival) rather than Monday.
I found the tent village at 10:05am after dealing with a disappointing breakfast in the hotel restaurant and a particularly demanding – and entitled – homeless woman at the Circulator stop on Fayette St. If I had time, I would have stopped at the McDonald’s next to the village and gotten a REAL breakfast, but I was there to get tickets not to eat.
Tickets prices have gone up since my last visit from $10 up to $12, but there was a “3 for $30” promotion that I didn’t notice until after I already purchased my FOUR tickets. Though I will say the volunteer at the festival tent was friendly even if I had to explain to her the times and venues to her so she could explain them back to me. How do I keep getting into these stupid sitcom-like situations anyway?
I arrived at the Walters Art Museum about a half hour before my first movie was set to start and took 15 minutes to write down everything that happened to me today before putting away my notebook and heading inside to the auditorium…just to find the film would be “delayed” (not the word I wanted to hear) due to “minor technical difficulties.”
The program, started about 10 minutes behind schedule, but since there was no “host” the film started immediately. I won’t get into my thoughts on the film here, but I fell asleep twice during its 104 minute runtime.
I walked down Charles St towards the Inner Harbor looking for someplace to have a nice lunch. I didn’t want fast food or a food truck, but an actual sit down meal so I was disappointed when the time on the check from Pizzeria Uno was only “1:37pm” – I still had nearly three hours until my next movie!
I took the Circulator back to the hotel, but the room wasn’t turned yet. I considered going down to the pool while waiting for housekeeping for come by, but it was too cloudy/breezy to swim so I stayed put and struggled through my first review until it was time to leave for my second screening.