Kill/Refurb/Marry: My Magic+

Yes, I’m back from Walt Disney World. 🙁 Trip/race reports forthcoming, of course, but first I’m knocking out this month’s Kill/Refurb/Marry – for the last time. :/ The infrastructure on the blog hop has changed so much that I can completely understand why it’s ending, but I’m bummed; it was nice to have it in the monthly post rotation. Ah well. Onward!

The final topic is My Magic+. Hmmmmmm. Tough one.

Kill: Magic Band Batteries

I have wracked my brains and decided to kill the battery inside Magic Bands. They only last a year, which means piles of Magic Bands will become useless, creating more and more waste as the years go on. Plus it makes otherwise nifty customized bands borderline useless. Let’s get some rechargeable batteries in there!

Refurb: FastPass+

The obvious one, but I mean it so hard I can’t not go with it: REVAMP THE FASTPASS+ SYSTEM, PLEASE. I like the non-paper element and I don’t even mind the reserving in advance. But I miss the old, spontaneous system, which allowed me to play a bit more fast and loose with my plans if I so desired. I also don’t appreciate being locked into one park for said FastPasses. But most of all – WHY do we have to go to kiosks to get new FastPasses? Why can’t we just do it through the app? Huh???

Marry: The App WITH CAVEATS

If you had asked me even a year ago what to kill, I would’ve unhesitatingly said THE APP. Getting it to work anywhere inside the parks was well nigh impossible for me and many others. However, the system has improved markedly since then, and I was able to use the app very effectively last week with excellent results. FP+ changes, show schedules, wait times – all good.

HOWEVER. Disney, so help me, if you do not continue to strengthen and expand your wifi system, THERE WILL BE HELL TO PAY. Keep that app in good shape and your wifi robust and we will all be happy campers.

There you have it: my last K/R/M. Thanks to the organizers for all their hard work on the series – maybe it’ll come back some day!

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

Kill/Refurb/Marry: 2015 Food & Wine Festival Foods

Kill/Refurb/Marry time! This month’s blog hop topic is an obvious one – and one I’ve tackled before. We’re choosing items from the Epcot Food & Wine Festival!

I have very deliberately not looked at what I posted last time in the hopes of keeping the past from influencing the present.

Kill: Anything with peas or grapes or cherry tomatoes or blueberries

I realize this is an extremely non-specific answer, but I must choose it, and here’s why: if a F&W Festival item contains any of the above, I WILL NOT EAT IT, no matter how well-reviewed it is. I have a bizarre phobia of small round objects, and while different items create in me different levels of anxiety, none of them make me happy. Also, if anything YOU are eating contains peas or grapes especially, I am WALKING AWAY and NOT COMING BACK UNTIL YOU’RE DONE. UGH UGH UGH.

Refurb: Desserts and champagne

Back to quasi-rationality. I know I said I wasn’t going to talk about last year’s similar post, but can I help if I have a pretty solid memory? I’m fairly certain I picked the same thing to refurb last year, for the same reason: the desserts are lame and the champagne is too expensive. Plus you can’t even get the desserts individually, which sucks if there’s an item or ingredient you definitely and definitively don’t want. Straighten up, desserts and champagne! You’re some of my favorite things and I would much rather marry you.

Speaking of which…

Marry: Pao de queijo

ALL THE PAO DE QUEIJO ALL THE TIME. SO EXCITED DELICIOUS TO ENSUE IS IT NOVEMBER YET???

(Honorable mention to that new nitro truffle thingee from The Chew. Excited to see how that turns out.)

See ya at Wine & Dine! 😀 😀 😀

Jenn is running the 2015 Marine Corps Marathon for the Diabetes Action Team. Will you help her earn her bib while fighting diabetes? Click here to make your tax-deductible donation.


Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

Kill/Refurb/Marry: Disney Mountains

So I’m, like, a full 24 hours late on this week’s Kill/Refurb/Marry. No grand excuse; I was on vacation and I forgot about the monthly blog hop. I have had this happen before and just let the month slide, but NOT THIS TIME. Not when we’re talking Disney Mountains!

But first, a question: when we say Disney Mountains, do we mean that in the literal sense; namely, do we mean the traditional triumvirate of Space Mountain, Splash Mountain, and Big Thunder Mountain Railroad found at Disney parks worldwide? Is Expedition: Everest eligible, being as it is subtitled a mountain?* Does the Fantasmic stage count?** Looks pretty mountainous to me.

* Yes.
** No.

Settle in: judgments begin now.

Kill: The Magic Kingdom’s Big Thunder Mountain Railroad

I’m sorry! I know it hurts. But BTMRR, while adorable and magnificently themed, is a glorified kiddie coaster. (Never mind that both Moon and my mother find it terrifying; they are wimps, wimping along wimpily. 😉 Because of Moon’s aforementioned terror, I did not experience Disneyland’s BTMRR during our Tink trip, so maybe it’s a little beefier?

Refurb: The Magic Kingdom’s Space Mountain

Disneyland’s Space Mountain has music and lights and an overlay and – this is important – CARS YOU CAN GET INTO AND OUT OF WITHOUT FALLING ON YOUR FACE, EXPOSING YOUR UNDERWEAR, OR OTHERWISE LOOKING LIKE A RAGING IDIOT. I want the MK’s version to have cars that don’t make me look like a raging idiot!

Wrong.
Right.

Marry: Expedition Everest – Legend of the Forbidden Mountain

Counts.

Love.

<3

Jenn is running the 2015 Marine Corps Marathon for the Diabetes Action Team. Will you help her earn her bib while fighting diabetes? Click here to make your tax-deductible donation.

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

Kill/Refurb/Marry: Frozen Treats in the Parks

It’s Kill/Refurb/Marry time! This month’s edition of the blog hop concerns favorite frozen treats in the parks. Now, the definition of “frozen treat” may vary from person to person – does ice cream count? If so, does it have to be considered a “novelty” or is Beaches & Cream’s No Way Jose sundae eligible? Alternatively, does it only county if there’s actual ice directly involved, like a slush or smoothie? Where does the Dole Whip fall in all of this?!

One could arrive at many interpretations, but where I chose to land was in the “ice cream novelties cart” category. Limiting? Sure! But when was I known to ever back down from such a delicious challenge?

Kill: Frozen lemonade

Pat got one of these on our very first day in the parks last January expecting something of a lemonade slush. What he got instead was basically lemonade frozen solid in a cup. He was most disappointed, but then, isn’t everybody? If you wanted something that literal, you could easily do it yourself. No magic here. Kill!

Refurb: The iconic Mickey Bar

Confession: I have never had a Mickey Bar. SACRILEGE! I know, I know. But… isn’t it basically just your standard vanilla ice cream bar with milk chocolate coating? I mean, what’s so great about that? Yeah, yeah, I know it’s Mickey shaped, and yeah, I can see how biting off his ears could be most satisfying (you psycho), but still. Let’s fancy him up, shall we? Maybe make him come in milk, dark, and white chocolate iterations, with a caramel or fudge center and chocolate chips or sprinkles on the outside? Nothing about Disney should be this plain!

Marry: The chocolate-covered frozen banana

The chocolate-covered banana is (spoiler art) largely a frozen banana. Bananas are fruit! It is covered with chocolate, yes, but also nuts. Nuts are healthy! They have protein and are good for your heart! Therefore, the chocolate-covered frozen banana is by rights and logic a health food. Good job, you, for eating such a nutritionally sound thing that is also strangely delicious. And on vacation, no less! You are now justified in eating whatever you want for dinner. Enjoy, you health-conscious thing, you!

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Jenn is running the 2015 Marine Corps Marathon for the Diabetes Action Team. Will you help her earn her bib while fighting diabetes? Click here to make your tax-deductible donation.

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

Kill/Refurb/Marry: Disney Resort Pools

It’s time for another Kill/Refurb/Marry! The blog hop topic for this month is Disney Resort Pools, which means I am going to have to cheat like woah.

See, I’ve wracked my brains, I cannot for the live of me remember a time I actually availed myself of a Disney pool. Oh, sure, I ALWAYS pack a swimsuit, just in case. Who knows what will strike my fancy this trip? But somehow parks and the occasional nap always take priority, and I never do dip a toe in.

That being said, I have been known to walk past any number of Disney Resort pools, and it is with these observations I intend to make my judgments. 

Kill: ALL THE QUIET POOLS

I get the concept. I really do. I’m sure there are people at the resort who just want a serene float in a pool that isn’t crawling with screaming children. Only there aren’t many of those people, so every time I pass an almost invariably empty quiet pool I wind up feeling sorry for the bored-looking lifeguard. It bums me out, man.

Refurb: Art of Animation Finding Nemo Pool

I really wish I had taken the time to hop in this pool when I stayed at AoA, mostly just because I want to hear the Nemo characters talking to each other underwater. The theme here is already well-executed and ya gotta love The Drop Off pool bar. But, hey, Disney, don’t you think your largest resort pool deserves some water slides? Good ones? I do!

Marry: Stormalong Bay at The Yacht & Beach Club

I was going to give this one to the Disneyland Hotel pool on the strength of its monorail water slides alone, but then I remembered that Stormalong Bay exists and I had to go with that. I mean, it has a LAZY RIVER, guys. A lazy river, right there outside your hotel room! Wait, you have a room at Y&B? Can I sleep on your floor?

These opinions were all brought to you by a person who has never gone swimming in a Disney pool.

Jenn is running the 2015 Marine Corps Marathon for the Diabetes Action Team. Will you help her earn her bib while fighting diabetes? Click here to make your tax-deductible donation.

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

Kill/Refurb/Marry: Extinct Attractions

It’s Kill/Refurb/Marry time again! I found this installment of the monthly blog hop particularly fertile. This time around we’re talking about extinct attractions. Strap in!

Kill: American Idol: The Experience

Man, an embarrassment of riches with this one. Body Wars is a decided no thank you on my part, but since I never rode it I can’t speak to it knowledgeably (although I can viscerally, and my viscera say: NO GOING INSIDE PEOPLE I’M LOOKING AT YOU MAGIC SCHOOL BUS).

I came THISCLOSE to killing Superstar Limo, too. Since I made it to California Adventure during the extremely brief period the ride actually existed, I think I am uniquely qualified to judge this perplexing and unpopular attraction as easily murdered.

And then I remembered that American Idol: The Experience was quite recently a thing. What are some words I can use to describe my opinion of AI:TE*? Awkward, forced, cringe-worthy, inferior prizes, total time suck for everyone involved. DO NOT WANT. Next!

* Hereinafter to be referred to as Aiight.

Refurb: ExtraTERRORrestrial Alien Encounter

I know. I KNOW. A lot of you just LOOOOVED this ride. But I do NOT like touching under the best of circumstances. I still haven’t even tried the replacement Stitch ride – I went through the line once but took the chicken exit in a panic because NO DON’T TOUCH AHHHH. Add a horror element and I can only imagine if I’d ever gone on Alien Encounter I would’ve had a nervous breakdown.

All that having been said, I find the concept very interesting. Can we bring it back, but offer a stand-off-to-the-side-and-just-watch option? All the animatronics, light flickers, and frightening sound effects, none of the saliva, hot breath, and fake alien fingers?

Marry: Horizons

The obvious choice is of course Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride, but since it still exists in Disneyland I feel like it doesn’t qualify. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea? Again, Disneyland.

I thought about demanding that Dreamfinder be brought back immediately, but as the Journey Into Imagination still exists in a different, albeit inferior iteration, I don’t think that works either (and anyway I mentioned it last time).

I finally landed on Horizons, that much-loved dark ride that bowed in favor of Mission: Space. And as much as I love me some Gary Sinise, I must say the deletion makes me sad. I have fond memories of discovering the attraction with my family in sixth grade, and since this was in my No Roller Coasters Too Scary phase, I was thrilled to find something so gently entertaining. The scenes were cute and the finale “motion simulator” video was fun. And when I later found out that it was meant to be a sequel of sorts to the Carousel of Progress, I loved it even more.

If ever there was an extinct attraction with an enormous fan base, it’s Horizons – someone even recreated the entire thing virtually, which is a nice stopgap but not quite the same. Please, Disney, won’t you give us back our Horizons?

Jenn is running the 2015 Marine Corps Marathon for the Diabetes Action Team. Will you help her earn her bib while fighting diabetes? Click here to make your tax-deductible donation.

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

Kill/Refurb/Marry: Disney Partners

It’s Kill/Refurb/Marry time! Today’s blog hop topic is “Disney Partners” otherwise described as “Disney Best Friends.” I’ve put some thought into it and decided upon the following:

Kill:
Mike, Sully & Boo from
Monsters, Inc.

I don’t know if you want to argue that Mike & Boo are more of a team or Sully & Boo are more of a team or what. All I know is that if Boo is playing for your team, YOU LOSE.

Refurb:
The Figment Crew from Journey Into Your Imagination at Epcot


I was having a little trouble determining which Disney buddy pair I wanted to refurb until I remembered, hey, I can totally go outside the movies, right? And so it shall be. Therefore, I wish to refurb the Imagination Pavilion team. Eric Idle, you’re a wonderful Python, but you’re no Dreamfinder. Let’s bring him back, shall we? I guess you could call this half a kill, or Nigel can stay too – I just want a little piece of the original ride I loved back. Let’s make it happen!

Mistakes were made.

Marry:
Pooh & Piglet of Everything Pooh-Related


Don’t get me wrong – of all the randomly added characters the world has ever seen in book-to-movie adaptations, Gopher is the most charming. But I’m glad Disney came to their senses and brought Piglet back for subsequent Pooh projects. Why marry the Pooh-Piglet combo? Here’s why:

I rest my case.

P.S. “W-O-L. That spells Owl.” “Bless my soul, so it does!”

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

Kill/Refurb/Marry: Epcot Food & Wine Festival Booths

This month’s Kill/Refurb/Marry is HARD, guys. It’s so hard I almost just skipped it. But apparently participating in this particular blog hop is like Mickey popcorn – once you start, you can’t NOT keep eating going.

Armed with my festival to-eat list, I set out, an intrepid explorer extraordinaire, and determined:

Who would I kill/refurb/marry among the Epcot Food & Wine Festival Booths?

Kill: Refreshment CoolPost/Refreshment Port/Coffee Carts/Any Other Normal Part of Epcot Pretending to be Not a Normal Part of Epcot

You were already here, guys. You have limited-run menus all the time. Stop cluttering up the festival map. YOU ARE NOT SPECIAL.

Refurb: Desserts & Champagne Kiosk

A quick glance at the festival map and instantly I knew this was my refurb pick. I LOVE champagne. But seriously, I LOOOOOVE DESSERT. SUGAR. SUGAR PLEASE. ALL THE SUGAR. If you do not want your sugar, I will not berate you; I will merely relieve you of your sugar. Happy to help!

And yet…

$32 glasses of Dom Perignon? No alts less than $10? Chocolates you can buy at your local store? A single dessert trio with no option to buy individually and frankly nothing that stands out as innovative, unique, or just-plain-drool-worthy? YOU CAN’T FREEZE S’MORES, OKAY???

I want to love you, Desserts & Champagne. I do. But you need a menu overhaul.

Marry: Greece, and by “Greece” I Specifically Mean “Griddled Cheese”

I dunno. I didn’t know what to put here. Lots of kiosks have things that interest me, but what with all the reviews out recently a lot of my opinions have changed. Perhaps it damages my integrity if I admit that I therefore made my decision based not upon the collective offerings of a single kiosk but rather I chose the kiosk that had the item that excites me most.

But guys, I have been dying to try the griddled Greek cheese with honey and pistachios for years. YEARS! It looks amazing, the reviews are, shockingly, all but across the board amazing, and I am SO INCREDIBLY EXCITED that I finally get to eat it.

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Heck, I’m SO INCREDIBLY EXCITED that I finally get to attend Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival! BEST TRIP EVER. (Until January’s trip, anyway.)

Honorable Mention: The “MLT” Award (When the Mutton is Nice & Lean)

The real Dread Pirate Roberts has been retired fifteen years and is living like a king in Patagonia.

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Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

Kill/Refurb/Marry: WDW Transportation

I am ever so excited to be taking part is this month’s Kill/Refurb/Marry! I have been a longtime follower of this cross-blog series, but never before had much to say about the covered topics. Well, today all that changes. You could say I’m a first time caller, long time listener – or in other words, strap in, kids, because I have OPINIONS about:

WALT DISNEY WORLD TRANSPORTATION

Kill: Any bus “chain” or multi-resort “loop”

Y’know what sucks? When you get on the All-Star Music bus, feeling positively cheerful about life and your journey to Epcot… and then you stop at All-Star Movies and hang out for what feels like FOREVER while eighteen strollers you didn’t see coming slooooowly load, thus killing ten minutes of valuable queuing-at-the-turnstiles time. That’s like fifteen extra people in front of you (none of whom know how to use the readers properly).

But you know what sucks WORSE? When you’re paying to stay at the Boardwalk and it takes eleven thousand years to take the bus to or from ANYWHERE because FIRST you have to stop at the Swan and Dolphin and THEN you have to stop at the Yacht Club and THEN you have to stop at the Beach Club and THEN you stop at the Boardwalk except by that point you probably missed it because you fell asleep. Unless you were standing the whole time. Sorry, man. That sucks.

Basically what I’m saying here is, man up and give every resort its own bus, Disney. We are not a carpool. KILL THE BUS CHAINS.

You are smart, you are pretty, and gosh darn it, you deserve your own bus!

Refurb: Friendship Boats

Okay, admittedly I’m on shaky ground here because I’m taken a Friendship boat, like, ONCE, but I just can’t seem to get a handle on them. When do they show up? Where exactly do they go? I know there’s that one that goes to Downtown Disney, and then one that goes to the Boardwalk resorts… Admittedly it might be my own fault for not trying them out more, but the boats seem so slow and unreliable. There needs to be a clear schedule and separate docks for boats going separate places and maybe you could speed things up a little? Nothing crazy, mind you, but some of us have ADRs to catch. Or stop advertising the boats as transportation at all and make them entirely about the pleasure of being on the water.

I don’t want to kill them off completely because there’s something inherently charming about boat travel, but I think the system needs an overhaul.

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Marry: My Own Two Feet

Obviously when I first considered WDW transportation my first thought was “MARRY THE MONORAIL!!!” And I DO love the monorail dearly. Even seeing it makes my day, not to mention a good photo better. And riding it? Love! Do you have any idea how often “Por favor mantengase alejado de las puertas” comes up in my everyday conversations? I adore my highway in the sky.

But.

You know what’s even better? Strolling through the International Gateway over to the Boardwalk resorts. Taking the walkway between the Boardwalk area and the Studios. The path between the Contemporary and the Magic Kingdom. The loop around the Seven Seas Lagoon.

What Disneyland takes for granted is an option offered but rarely in Walt Disney World, but every time you can – it’s wonderful to walk. To say: now I shall go! And then start. No waiting for buses or monorails or boats to show up. Moving as slowly or as quickly as you like. Jostling no one, holding tight to nothing. Perhaps simply walking does not scream DISNEY! as loudly as some other options… but it allows a level of control offered by nothing else.

Good job, feet. Keep it up.

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Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out 
Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!