Friday, May 26, 2006

Punching Pluto

It was a little over four years ago when the 'incident' happened, though it feels like only yesterday. We have since called it the 'incident' and it will forever be known as such as it gets retold from generation to generation at countless family gatherings and impromptu get togethers. The 'incident' by some could be considered a crime by others. At the very least a sacrilege!

I had taken my wife and son Zach who was only three at the time to Orlando. The manufacturer my company was working with at the time was having their annual dealer kick-off and hosting us right on Disney property. It was perfect for Kathy and Zach to hang out all day, enjoy the park and I could generally catch up with them after the severely boring meetings ended in the afternoon.

It was just such an afternoon when the 'incident' happened. We had spent several hours walking the Disney World property and we were literally spent. Zach was getting cross and not even the bribery of more Disney joy was going to assuage his audacious outburt. It was time to go and we headed for one of the side exits to catch the boat back to our hotel.

For those of you who have kids, you likely can relate to the powerful shrieks that a child is capable of espousing. Zach was so cross he was being completely unreasonable. He didn't want to leave and didn't mind telling the entire park about it as we began what was now a full on run to the gate.

Then it happened.

A side door opened.

And out popped Pluto.

I think it is law in the world of masked oversized characters that you must get excited at the first site of a new child and immediately rush over and start showing off.

Pluto spotted Zach. Zach with tears streaming down his face stopped his shrills mid-stream and stopped. Zach had spotted Pluto.

Pluto...being the smart oversized dog that he is connects the proverbial dots. Kid was crying. I appear. No more crying. Time to make smiles!

Pluto came bouncing over, hamming it up all the way. Zach starred at him with wide-eyed amazement.

Kathy positioned herself to take a picture of an encounter that would for sure be precious memory for us all. A definite wall picture if you ever saw one right? Right.......

Pluto jumps, literally jumps, right in front of Zach expecting wild giggles and spewing joy at his overacted gesture.

Then it happened.


Pluto staggered back like he had taken a Mike Tyson upper cut. He stumbled with shoulders slumping but to his credit, never went down. His beak shot up revealing his caved in black dot of a nose. Zach had taken one powerful shot and caved poor Pluto's nose in.

A TKO if I ever saw one.

Pluto slinked back, tail literally tucked between his legs, to the door he had just come from and disappeared.

The 'incident' has me just a bit nervous as we as a family head back to the scene of the crime. Last night I had a dream that somewhere somehow Zach's picture has been posted everywhere just in case he tries to scurry the perimeter of the park again.

I awoke with sweat dripping from my forehead and the mental image of my being handed a restraining order that proclaimed Zach must remain a minimum of 350 feet from Pluto at all times.

Thanks to all of you have taken the time to send your wishes for a great trip. Thank you. I literally have the greatest readers in the world!!!

I will be back blogging late next week unless of course, another 'incident' happens. Josh has a much tougher punch than Zach had at this age.

Until next time.....

Ripple On!!!

Steve Harper


Anonymous said...

Park security has been alerted. The oversized characters all have viewed the surveilance videos from that "incident" and you will find that the seven dwarfs will be blocking your enterance to all the fun rides. Snow White is going undercover to seduce you away from your family, while Mickey and Miney plan to take the rest of your family into custody.

Pooh Bear has been appointed as Zach's attorney, while Disney public prosecuter Goofy is planning to file suit against Zach as there are just days left in the statute of limitations.

Judge Cinderella will overseeing the trial.

He will be sent to Davey Crocket's Island for exile should he be convicted.

Should he be set free, the wicked queen will be offering your whole family apples. Do not eat them.

CJ said...

I worked at Disney. This caused permanent damage including a persistent wariness around little kids who make lots of noise and do unexpected things which can be very painful to people around them.

This blog is clear evidence that I'm telling the truth! All I have to say is that I rest my case.