The Fairest Week In Review: 10/10

Hello humans! I am pleased to announce that I finished up a long run on Sunday and that’s the last one of the training cycle. We’re tapering our way to the Marine Corps Marathon, baby!

Workout log is go:

Sunday | National Capital 20 Miler, official time of 3:27:52

Monday | 55 minute ballet class
A lil’ bit of knee pain popped up, but not nearly as bad as last time.

Tuesday | walked 2.1 miles outside in 35 minutes

Wednesday | walked 2.11 miles outside in 35 minutes

Thursday | walked 2.34 miles outside in 40 minutes; 55 minute ballet class

Friday | ran 5.43 miles outside in 55 minutes

Saturday | rest

The Marine Corps Marathon bearing down on us all can only mean one thing: Wine & Dine race weekend is just around the corner too. And I mean just: my Magic Bands have shipped and everything. Still waffling on whether to purchase a two-day park ticket now or wait until arrival… if only I could see the new pricing tables in advance! (HA.)

Pork butt.

And with that, I present to you: the roundup.


Don’t forget, you can follow FRoA on Twitter @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions or thoughts, leave a comment or email fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

In Which Jenn’s Magic Bands Are Disappointingly Tasteful After All

You didn’t think I’d leave you hanging, did you?

If you haven’t been following my Magic Band drama, let me sum up, Inigo Montoya-style: I tried to put “Pork Butt” on my Magic Band and Disney wasn’t having it. (Read the full story here to get the scoop on how I found out, who I talked to, and why “butt” is a bad, bad word and Nemo never should’ve touched it.)

But wait, there’s more! After calling a Cast Member to begrudgingly let her change the name, I subsequently received two separate Magic Band shipment confirmation emails. Could Disney IT have decided to flout the system and send me the bands I originally requested anyway?

Well, I have both boxes now, and I can tell you the answer is this: kind of but not really.

Because I spoke to a Cast Member on the phone, we received these plain, boring just-our-names Magic Bands:

But(t) because I never called back Disney IT, who originally flagged the issue, we also got these:

So Pat gets his Bort, but I get… nada. Boo. The inside is just a string of code.

Oh well. At least Pat is happy. He really really wanted to be Bort, which is apparently a reference to The Simpsons…? I pointed out that I’m pretty sure the Magic Band triggered content (your name on signs and stuff) reads your actual MDE account name, not your band’s name, but he’s very insistent that SOMEONE WILL SEE IT and THEY WILL LAUGH. I don’t know. You’ve seen it now; did you laugh?

I’m fairly confident that both sets of bands are connected to the same MDE accounts and will work fine for Magical Express, FastPasses, etc., but just in case we’ll bring both sets with us. Less than two weeks to go!

Am I forgetting anything? Oh, I know: BUTT. (FACE!)

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

The Fairest Week In Review: 3/29

Annnnnnnnnd right back into training I go. Harrumph.

Sunday | rest
I had wanted to get a short run in but I was still sick. Bleh.

Monday | ran 10.39 miles on the treadmill in 1:45
This may have been a poor choice, since I was still a liiiiiittle bit sick and also it was my first run off the marathon, but I hadn’t worked out in over a week and got carried away. Oh well; no harm done.

Tuesday | walked 2.16 miles outside in 35 minutes; 70 minute ballet classi

Wednesday | ran 8.39 miles on the treadmill in 1:25
Was worried about some hip soreness from my last week, but nothing a little KT Tape and careful form couldn’t handle.

Thursday | walked 2.26 miles outside in 35 minutes; 70 minute ballet class

Friday | ran 6.25 miles on the treadmill in 1:05

Saturday | rest

Update on the saga that is our inappropriate Magic Bands! On March 24, I received confirmation that my Magic Bands were on their way. Then on March 26 I received confirmation that my Magic Bands were on their way…? Two separate tracking numbers. Innnnteresting. Do you think we’re going to get the regular bands AND the bad-word bands? Intrigue!

We’d hate to have to be this boring AGAIN.

The Twilight Bark:

Back at Square Zero makes big goals manageable.
The Runner’s Guide to WDW offers advice on upping your running speed.
Disney In Your Day makes an adorable Vanellope running costume. Although I still haven’t forgiven Sarah Silverman for kissing Tom Paris that one time.
Mouse on the Mind has located another available apartment in Epcot.
WDW for Grownups shares their picks for the best Flower & Garden Festival foods.
A Pinch of Pixie Dust gives an overview of the Magic Band 2. She doesn’t mention what she named it.
Living A Disney Life locates a hidden DAK relaxation spot.
Parkeology takes us back to the bygone days of Main Street’s magic shop.
Just Me & My Running Shoes takes her kid to the Harmony Barber Shop. Less than a month to my appointment!
The Disney Tourist Blog recaps a trip on the Disney Cruise Line.

Be sure to swing back by on Friday for a VERY SPECIAL GUEST BLOGGER. 😀

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

In Which Jenn Is Obscene, If You Ask Disney IT (Assuming You Can Find Them)

OH MY GOD, GUYS. I simply must tell you about what happened to me a couple days ago. It is Walt Disney World roller coaster ride… OF THE MIND.

On Wednesday afternoon I get a voicemail from an unknown Greensboro, NC number from someone purporting to be calling on behalf of Walt Disney World. They claim they need to talk to me about my recent Magic Band order. Immediately, the whole thing raises a bunch of red flags for me:

  • The Greensboro phone number, which has no internet presence, except for one page of people claiming it’s spam
  • I’m told to call a separate number back, which has almost no internet presence – one person saying it’s related to their WDW annual pass and then a separate page calling it a mortgage scam
  • They say that phone line is only open from 8am to 4:30pm, which are some very un-Disney times; most Disney phone lines I’ve encountered are open until 11pm
  • While I do have Magic Bands presumably coming soon, it’s not really an “order” as they’re the automatic ones attached to my resort reservation and
  • The order number they give me is completely different, both in numbers and pattern, from the confirmation number given in MDE

So I hop on the WDW website online chat feature and explain the whole situation to the Cast Member. She checks on my Magic Bands and says there does appear to be a hold, but she doesn’t know why. She also polls her surround CMs and comes back with the information that all Magic Bands are distributed from Florida and she has NO idea what those Greensboro phone numbers are. She gives me a legit Magic Band number to call later.

At this point I am entirely convinced I have unearthed some secret underground fake Disney scam call, and they clearly went up against the wrong Disney fan. But before I get too excited, I close the loop by calling the new, official Disney Magic Band number I now have.

I get a Cast Member who is initially no more aware than the first CM. She looks up my account, sees that my Magic Bands are in the fulfillment stage, and assures me that I should be getting them in a couple weeks. Sensing that she thinks I’m just getting ahead of the timetable, I press a little further, explaining about the weird phone numbers and the order number. She asks me to hold while she consults with the Disney IT team.

About ten minutes later, she returns and we have our answer: ladies and gentlemen, Pat and I broke the Magic Band system.

Well, that’s a bit of an exaggeration. Here’s what happened:

Enough months ago that I don’t even remember doing it, Pat and I selected our Magic Band colors and nicknames, as you do. Feeling a little silly, Pat put “Bort” down for his (this is apparently a Simpsons reference?), and then instructed me to put “Pork Butt” for mine, this being a funny nickname he uses for me sometimes.

Kids, Disney considers “butt” a swearword. I’ll say that again: “Butt” is a swearword, as far as Disney is concerned. “Butt” got flagged in the system.

“You see,” said the apologetic Cast Member, “these packages are often seen by children, and…”

“Sure, but ‘butt’ isn’t a bad word,” I countered.

“I agree with you,” the CM replied, “but the system won’t print it. I can’t have your Magic Bands sent to you until you change the name.”

And now Pat and I have boring Magic Bands again. The other alternative was to have the bands sent directly to the resort, but we need them in advance for the Magical Express.

To review:

  • Disney IT is apparently based in Greensboro, NC, but it must be a very secretive operation because very few other Disney departments know about it and the entire internet isn’t too aware either
  • The Disney website does not have a validation system when it comes to Magic Band names, although they really should because I bet it would save them a lot of time and trouble
  • DISNEY CONSIDERS THE WORD “BUTT” TO BE THE SORT OF OBSCENITY THAT COULD CORRUPT CHILDREN

I mean, I kind of get it. I think their intolerance for “butt” itself is ridiculous, but I can see why they wouldn’t want some obnoxious older brother to put “Anal Queef” as their name and then his little sister opens the box and asks what a “queef” is and the parents are enraged and then media coverage and pandemonium, etc. etc. But if “butt” is unacceptable, I think their vigilance overreaches somewhat.

I have it on good authority, however, that you can totally put, like, “Bob Iger” on your bands. The system has no problem with low level identity theft. Now, “butt,” on the other hand…

Anyway. I’m not mad or anything, but I am equal parts amused and incredulous. I mean, it’s pretty absurd, don’t you think?

Oh well. At least I got probably my most popular tweet ever out of it.

At least now I know what the people like. (Butts.)

What do you think? Was I wildly inappropriate for attempting to put “butt” on my Magic Band? Or could Disney stand to cool it just a tad? Also, what the hell is up with Disney’s clandestine IT department?

Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at fairestrunofall@gmail.comSee ya real soon!

In Which Jenn Has The Loneliest Magic Band

Ever wonder what it looks like when you receive exactly one Magic Band? Well, it looks like this:
C’mon, Disney. You could at least throw some Mickey confetti in there, cheer up us lonely hearts. (Although actually I’m super excited and it’s going to be a great race! Best self-birthday present ever!!!!)
SEE YOU AT THE WDW MARATHON. HOPE MY ACHILLES HOLDS UP.
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: 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!

In Which Jenn Flips Out Over Magic Bands & Makes A Disney Playlist

Is Carol Anne so wisely said in Poltergeist: THEY’RE HEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEERE.

Do Spanish-speaking families receive a box that says ‘increible’?

Hello, precious. Hello.

I got home from ballet last night, saw the box on the kitchen counter, and squeaked to such a tremendous degree that my roommate came in to find out what was inside. And then she humored me admirably when I showed her my plastic bracelets.

But guys, seriously – I am SO EXCITED because that means MY DAY IS COMING. Twenty-seven days. Twenty-seven days until I am showing my mom around Walt Disney World!

And in honor of this trip, my mother’s first foray into this largely unknown world since 1998, I burned her two CDs. One is the amazing Julie Andrews Selects Her Favorite Disney Songs, because that had a lot of songs from movies from my mom’s childhood and also Julie Andrews is the greatest human being who ever lived. (Find that one on Amazon here.)

The other is a mixed CD of music that I think will be relevant to the theme park experience. None of the ride or show soundtracks, mind you, because as much as they make me nostalgically happy, I think it’s best to experience them fresh for the first time in the parks. Instead, this burned CD features music that pops up a lot in those soundtracks, things you’ll hear in Wishes or Fantasmic or Festival of the Lion King. Basically it’s everything I ever watched when I was a kid, so she knows most of these songs too; I’m just giving her a refresher. Here’s what I’ve got:

  1. “Beauty and the Beast” from – wait for it – Beauty and the Beast
  2. “Part of Your World” from The Little Mermaid
  3. “Under the Sea” from The Little Mermaid
  4. “Kiss the Girl” from The Little Mermaid
  5. “Poor Unfortunate Souls” from The Little Mermaid
  6. “A Whole New World” from Aladdin
  7. “Go the Distance” from Hercules
  8. “The Circle of Life” from The Lion King
  9. “Be Prepared” from The Lion King
  10. “Hakuna Matata” from The Lion King
  11. “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” from The Lion King
  12. “I’ll Make a Man Out of You” from my beloved Mulan
  13. “Just Around the Riverbend” from Pocahontas
  14. “Savages” from Pocahontas
  15. “The Bells of Notre Dame” from The Hunchback of Notre Dame

Well, whaddya think? Did I leave out anything vital to the proper Disney park experience?

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.com. See ya real soon!

The Fairest Week in Review: 10/28

I have exciting news! I just got the official email from Disney: I have been invited to participate in MyMagic+ during my December trip to Walt Disney World! I’ve customized our bands – pink for my mom and yellow for me because it would be too confusing if we were both pink and there’s no purple hey why is there no purple? – and I’m very much looking forward to finding out what horrors lie in wait as part of My Disney Experience.

Awww, I kid, I kid – I’ve read about some positive experiences too, so I’m prepared to give it the ol’ post-college try. The only bit that makes me sad is that I can’t get my FasstPass+ all set up. I’m running into the same issue that Katherine of Food Fitness Fantasy has had: we’re both of us saving up all our Disney Visa points to buy tickets while at the parks, so we’ve got nothing to link to our bands for the time being. Oh well. I’ll just have to jump on the app as soon as I can!

36 MORE DAYS. (Source)

Anyway. Running stuff. Last week was pretty uneventful, training-wise, but I still suffered some digestive issues. In the past I’ve always been able to eat just about whatever I felt like and shortly before running to boot. Now, as I increase my mileage, I think that’s changing. I’m going to take a shot at NOT eating before running and instead taking Clif Shot Bloks as I run. Hopefully that’ll work, although those Bloks are kinda expensive. : Our runner lives are hard.

Musically, I’ve been ALL ABOUT the full show soundtrack for The Festival of the Lion King because I FREAKING LOVE The Festival of the Lion King. If you’ve never seen FotLK, I demand that you make it Priority One for your next trip. Do it do it do it!

Now that all my edicts are out of the way, it’s time for the roundup, no?

– This is Halloween! The Affordable Mouse shares some haunted tales from Cast Members.
Live, Run, Grow shows us how to get our race-day gear organized.
The Main Street Gazette cautions us to stay on designated trails when running at WDW. Stay safe!
Peer inside the mind of a marathoner on race day with Pink Elephant on Parade.
– Running the Wine and Dine Half for the first time? We Run Disney explains it all.
The DisBroads school us on how to get into a sold-out runDisney race.
The Runner’s Guide to WDW features Gail Savidge, earner of 50 runDisney medals. Someday!
Running with Pixies runs 4 Logan!
The Disney Tourist Blog really wants to you to read their Tokyo Disney trip report. Not that I think you’ll need much convincing.

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.com. See ya real soon!