The Happiest Survelliance State on Earth

I have got to give it to Disney World. They are incredibly smart at getting vacationers to willingly surrender all of their personal privacy. I mean, yours truly was practically giddy with the convenience of the Magic Band. The magic band is a radio transmitter bracelet that 99% of park attendees willingly wear. If you stay at a Disney resort, the band is a key to your room, your park tickets, your meal plan tickets, your instant charge card, etc. It also is your way to store photographs that Disney photographers take of you. Basically, it is your wearable tracking device while on Disney property. They know everything about you.

But you don’t care about a corporation gathering millions of data points about you when posing with picture of a giant mouse do you?

Of course not! So just sit back and enjoy the convenience of it!


Thanks to that above photo, the mice of the Walt Disney World Corporation are now aware of how terrible my hair looks post pregnancy in the humidity of Florida, and just how little I care about it!


They are aware of just how difficult it is to get my babies to look at the camera when taking pictures.


They know that I am the kind of person that will insist on having a family photo taken in front of faux Parisian street scenes.

Or in front of giant fake baobab trees.

They know that Melissa is someone who takes games on rides very seriously.

And they know that we are the kind of people that will pose with our kids and Disney characters (but only the traditional ones).


Judging from my terrible hair, they probably know that I am the kind of person who will never be responsible for creating any sort of “viral” online craze, but if I were to surprise them and create some sort of online anything that goes viral, it would probably involve the cuteness of my niece.

Look at the spontaneous, uncoached knee pop, guys:
But nothing tops the adorableness of the pictures with Pluto:


They know that we are the kind of people who knows when the surprise photo is going to be taken on the roller coasters:


That is, except Harrison, who has no idea what is going on for some of the rides. On Dinosaur, when everyone else is looking at the giant tyrannosaurus jumping out on the right, Harrison is casually gazing to his left, like no big deal.


The last bit is the most terrifying bit of all. For the above photos, I had someone scan my wristband to have the photos linked to my account. For the newest ride, the Seven Dwarfs mine train, you have a couple of moments in the ride when the flash goes off, and you think, oh, they just took my picture. Then you get off the ride, and unlike all of the other rides, there is no place you walk through that is scanning through the pictures of people on the ride that you sync up to your magic band. Nope, you walk out of the ride and think, oh, I guess there weren’t pictures after all.

Then, you go home and scan your Disney pictures and you realize, oh wait, there are pictures of me on the Seven Dwarfs Mine Train right there on my picture account. THEY KNEW IT WAS ME THE ENTIRE TIME. That is when you realize there is no such thing as anonymity at Disney World and you FREAK OUT. Privacy is just a ruse in that place. Who knows how else they are tracking you with your magic band. Did they track every time I went to the bathroom too? Disney World is the place where dreams come true, unless your dream is to be anonymous and have your vacation not used for some corporation’s higher marketing purpose. Here is the picture when Melissa, David, and Harrison didn’t realize that their Dwarf Overlords knew it was them the entire time. (David and I went back to go on the mine train one night after the boys were in bed, and it was raining the entire time we were at the Magic Kingdom that night, and I have shared enough terrible pictures of myself to also share another terrible picture of me as a wet dog riding a children’s roller coaster.)


I am sad my children will grow up in a world where it is impossible to be anonymous on vacation.

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