The happiest place on earth.
Disney World has successfully branded itself as the place to be if you want a family full of smiles. They’re fastidious in keeping parks clean, caring for their guests and providing all the comforts and fun a person could hope to have.
For a price.
Money aside, it’s a place where you see wonder in the eyes of a child as they come nose to nose with their favorite character. Where a little girl becomes a princess and gets to hug the Disney real McCoy. Where dreams come true.
The ear culture at Disney is something to behold. I fully understand children wearing the ears. There’s so many to choose from to accessorize any outfit. The simple black ears, reminiscent of Steamboat Willy and the early days of Mickey. The fancy Minnie ears, bejeweled and bedazzled. Royal ears for princesses in training. BB-8 ears for tough young Jedi.
What astounds me are the number of adults wearing mouse ears.
I get the newlyweds wearing bride and groom ears. Early imprinting for couples. (If you can get him to wear mouse ears, you’ve got a lot going in your favor.) Honeymoon cute.
Many young women wear ears. I saw some the other day made of colorful flowers with delicate metal ears. Others wore the blingy ears, reflecting the sun with blinding sparkles. Some had princess ears with iridescent gauze flowing behind. Cute to quirky.
It’s the big guys wearing the ears that cause the most fun. Men who, under any other circumstances, would never consent to wear something perceived as childish.
But it’s Disney. When in Disney, you do what the Mouse does. No embarrassment.
Everyone wears the ears.
It’s why the Bible calls us sheep. We tend to do what everyone else does. The herd mentality.
It begs the question parents have asked their kids for years. “If everyone else jumped off the cliff, would you?” A brisk nod of assent is often the answer.
Independent thinking. It’s a novelty in our society. Social media drives us to be acceptable to a standard set by persistent people who want life their way. Peer pressure. We find ourselves agreeing to do things, say things, believe or disbelieve things because everyone else is doing it. Without that pressure, we’d have mental space to assess a situation and make choices based on what we know to be true.
It’s easier to go along with the crowd. Walking the wide road of acceptability. Choosing the narrow road of conscience, hope and faith, isn’t popular.
It’s fun to channel my inner Mouse when I’m at Disney.
But I don’t live at Disney. It’s not my reality.
I need to learn to take off the ears. To think for myself, to pursue truth and value I can find only in God. Live a life of integrity and character.
They don’t look that good on me anyway.