The B Ticket Blog Guide to Tsum Tsum

23 Nov

I’ve noticed a lot of people asking the same questions about the Tsum Tsum game app and how exactly it works. There seems to be some confusion around a couple of things, so I thought I would throw together this guide to address those things. It is by no means comprehensive, but hopefully this will clear up confusion so people will enjoy playing Tsum Tsum even more!

LEVELING UP YOUR TSUMS

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Any Tsum you own starts at Level One. Let’s use Woody as an example. Anytime the Woody Tsum comes up in gameplay, you will earn points towards his level. You will have to spend coins to continue to level up a Tsum every five levels. The Tsum’s level maxes out at 30.

This level does not effect your Tsum’s skill. The ONLY thing it effects is the number of points you get for clearing that Tsum. This is important because it will help you raise your score (and earn more coins!) but again, it will not effect the skill level. The score a Tsum will earn is listed under it’s level.

RAISING YOUR TSUMS SKILL LEVEL

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So how DO you raise the skill level? To do that, you have to purchase a box and receive a Tsum that is already in your collection. That Tsum’s skill level will then be raised. If you go to your collection and look at a Tsum, you can see their Skill level, what it means, and when it will level up. For example, my Woody Tsum’s skill level is at a 3 out of 6. The bar underneath shows his progress towards the next level–I will need to purchase three more Woody Tsums to increase the skill to 4. The effect is shown below–the area of the screen he clears will be medium sized.

BUT THAT WILL TAKE FOREVER!

Well, that’s the fun of the game! You don’t want to have mastered the whole thing in two weeks, do you? If you are frustrated with having to save up a long time for the Premium Boxes, I suggest focusing on the Regular Boxes at first. For example, having a highly skilled Chip or Dale will have your score improving and you’ll be making more coins before you know it!

The best thing you can do is just keep playing! Not only to improve your skills, but because your Tsums will be worth more points and you will keep earning more coins to try to improve their skills. It can feel like a very slow-go sometimes but I promise you will see your score get better and be earning more coins eventually.

GAMEPLAY TIPS
Here are a few gameplay tips from me that I have either not seen elsewhere or seen contradicted elsewhere–

1. DON’T WAIT FOR FEVER TIME! I see a lot of people saying even if your Tsum is fully charged, you should wait until Fever Time to tap it. I disagree with this. It is better to get to Fever Time as quickly as possible than wait for any potential gain by using it during Fever Time. If you are only a combo or two away from getting to Fever Time, then it’s not a bad idea to wait a moment. But for the most part, waiting is going to cause you to waste time. I’ve noticed that the more quickly I get to Fever Time after beginning a game, the higher my score is in the end.

2. SLOW DOWN! Most people say to go as quickly as possible. While it’s important to keep your combo going, it’s best not to be overly frantic or else you are not going to make the best possible chains. The longer the chain, the more points it is worth and the faster you will get to Fever Time. This leads me to my next tip…

3. USE BUBBLES TO QUICKLY CLEAR CHAINS. A really long chain can take a long time to disappear, but if you pop a bubble right after making it, it will disappear almost instantaneously. When you get bubbles, don’t immediately pop them. First connect a long chain, then pop the bubble. If possible, make sure the bubble is far from the chain so you are still clearing Tsums with the bubble. Doing this right can really improve your game!

4. DO DAILY MISSIONS AND USE THEM TO ANALYZE GAMEPLAY. Daily missions help you earn coins, but they have a few other advantages, too. For one, it gets you playing every day. Like I said, the real key to improving is to keep playing, earning coins, and leveling up those Tsums. The other thing they can do is help you analyze your gameplay. While you’re playing, it would be really difficult to keep track of how many Fever Times you had. Unless you’re keeping a spreadsheet, you probably can’t compare different rounds very easily. However, you can use your Daily Mission information to check out patterns and improve. For instance, that’s how I came to the conclusion that it’s better to use your Tsum to get to Fever Time as fast as possible–when the daily mission was counting how many times I got there, I was watching to see how much it effected my score. It was pretty noticeable. Pay attention to this data and see if it gives you any insight to your gameplay.

Well, that’s all I have for now! I hope this helps clear up some confusion about Tsum Level versus Skill Level and helps your improve your game play. Have fun!

TSUMTSUM

Beef & Booze: My Food & Wine Festival Menu Selections, Part Three

20 Aug

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If you haven’t already, please check out Part One and Part Two. Now it’s time for my final menu picks!

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Don’t shush me, Trey. You look stupid.

Craft Beers– Beer

Man, am I ever getting beer-ed out. There sure is a lot of beer for something called the food and WINE festival. I’m not a wine person, so I really oughtn’t complain. It’s the principle!! You can buy a souvenir mug here, so I’ll probably do that. I may give the Punkin Ale here a try, although I’m not sure I want a giant mug of it. I’d probably go with the 312 Urban Wheat Ale, then maybe try a flight some other time if I feel so inclined.

Germany– Bratwurst and Altenmünster Oktoberfest

I’m pretty pumped for this stand because I like a lot of German food however I never get any in WDW because the smell in that place makes me gaggy. I’m very sensitive to smells and it’s just too much for me in there. Nobody likes a Gaggy Clarf. Sadly, I don’t really like ham much so I’m not interested in the Schinkennudeln, which at least LOOKS tasty to me, even if I don’t want to eat it. So I will opt for the bratwurst here, which comes on a pretzel roll with some kicky mustard. Can’t go wrong with that! Wine and bratwurst sounds unappetizing if not downright disturbing, so Altenmünster Oktoberfest it is!

Hawaii– Kālua pork slider and Big Wave Golden Ale

This is another one I am really looking forward to. The Kālua pork slider with sweet and sour Dole Pineapple chutney and spicy mayonnaise sounds and looks amazing. I’m intrigued by the Pineapple wine, but it sounds like a bit much. I’ll opt for the Big Wave Golden Ale.

Hops and Barley– Ugh.

If I buy a water bottle, will they give me a stamp?

Ireland– Kerrygold cheese selection

Land of ire. Seafood is out, and warm chocolate pudding sounds like the last thing I’m going to want sitting in my stomach, so that leaves me with the Kerrygold cheese selection. It includes reserve cheddar, Dubliner with Irish Stout and Skellig. I’d consider myself a big cheese fan, but I usually don’t stray from the same cheese your five year old likes to munch on. Give me a bowl of mild shredded cheddar and I’m happy as can be. The point is, my cheese palate is coarse and unrefined. These cheeses aren’t especially deep cuts, but they aren’t something I would typically order either. With that in mind, I’m (perhaps sadly) filing this under “Trying Something New”. I’ll probably pass on the beverages here, unless I need a caffeine pick-me-up.

Italy– Ravioli alla caprese, Cannoli al cioccolato and Procecco

No a-spicy meat-a-balls? The hell? Oh well, the ravioli alla caprese sounds good to me! I am sure some pasta will be a nice change of pace from all the meat-heavy selections I’ve made elsewhere. And I will not be leaving the cannoli because it sounds damn good. Round it out with the procecco and I’ve got a nice little mini-meal going.

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If it’s not in a cup, I send it back.

Mexico– No estoy segura

The shrimp and rib eye tacos really don’t interest me, especially when I can easily (and most definitely will!) get some tastier Mexican snacks over in the Mexico Pavillion. Why aren’t they serving Tecate here? Truly a shame. For me, specifically. I’ll probably grab a sangria or try the sweet corn cheesecake. I’d opt for the Mango Strawberry margarita but I can’t stand frozen drinks with strawberry. I really wish they were offering something a bit more unique in a margarita here. I wish last year’s Mango Habanero had stuck around.

Patagonia– Beef Skewer

Looks like more beef for me at this stand. The beef empanada sounds good, but a little too similar to the kefta pocket. Instead, I think I’ll opt for the grilled beef skewer with chimichurri sauce and boniato purée. If I decide to get a drink here, it’ll be the sparkling brut. Now, I’m used to drinking very fine options like Andre, so I may be setting myself up for disappointment. I’ll probably take a break from the booze at this stand.

Poland– Kielbasa and potato pierogi and Frozen Szarlotka

Kielbasa and potato pierogi with caramelized onions and sour cream. Yes. All day long, yes. Although, I’m pretty sure pierogis belong in a Pittsburgh booth. That is based solely on the fact that I went to a Pirates game once and they had people dressed in pierogi costumes racing. As you do. I’ve only had the freezer kind before, so I’m excited to try one that’s better quality. The frozen Szarlotka is an apple pie flavored vodka drink of some kind. Just go with it.

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TR and a pierogi taking a selfie because of course.

Puerto Rico– Friturias and sangria

If there is not a full-blood boricua working at this booth with a tattoo that says as much on his arm, I am throwing a fit. He doesn’t have to tell me, “Mami, I need ya”. He doesn’t even have to whisper, “Te quiero”. But the tattoo is non-negotiable. So, what will I be eating when he takes me with him back to Puerto Rico I MEAN when I go to this booth lol sorry got lost in el ritmo. Definitely the friturias. What in the heck are friturias? Apparently they are sorullitos (sweet polenta fries) and bolitas de queso (cheese fritter with mayo ketchup). It looks and sounds delicious, even if the mayo ketchup does come in creepy capsules. I’m getting the sangria because it is Gasolina sangria and I want to so badly to yell, “DAME MAS GASOLINA!”. I won’t, but I’ll think about it and chuckle. And just an aside, googling “Puerto Rican men” is also very, erm, fruitful. Lots of Adam Rodriguez. He can’t take me back to Puerto Rico, though. Not without that tattoo.

Terra– Whatever.

Last and perhaps least, Terra. I’m really happy for you kooky vegans. You deserve a booth. You do. And I know it’s sponsored by Gardein so that’s why they use their products in every dish. I just wish there was some sort of plain vegetable dish here. I’m not a big fan of meat substitutes, and even the damn cupcake is topped with tofu. Hey, they should’ve made it a beet cupcake with tofu icing! Disney owns Doug. SYNERGY! Or something. Anyway. Two uninspired (but vegan!) wines, a gluten-free and pretty meh-sounding beer, and watermelon juice. I’d really prefer to just eat a nice slice of watermelon. An entire glass of the juice just seems like overkill. In any case, I’m not sure what I will end up getting from this booth. Maybe I’ll just get some fake chicken and throw it at a duck or something.

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Well, there you have it! Before I close, I wanted to share a few sites that have really helped me with my Food and Wine planning and my menu choices. The first is THIS post at wdwtools.com. It’s titled “Bobotie for Beginners: Food & Wine Booth Menus Decoded!” and it goes through each menu with descriptions of some of the more obscure menu items as well as details about the different alcoholic beverages. How handy! They saved me a lot of time I’d have spent googling different beers and wines.

The second is EatingWDW.com. Of all the sites I’ve been to, I enjoy the tone and presentation of this one the most. There are posts for each of last year’s booths with photos of the menus and the food, as well as their personal opinions. It’s thorough but not too clinical and I appreciate having their assessment of the different dishes as I’m looking at the menus. They also have lots of resources and info regarding this year’s festival and will surely have posts up as soon as it begins!

Well, with that I have made my choices. And holy CRAP that is a shit-ton of food. This may become the first WDW vacation where I actually come back fatter than I left. I think I gained five pounds just writing it. If you’re going to be there when I am, please drop me a line! I’d love to meet-up. I cannot wait to go and try everything and report back. Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter and Instagram if you’re not already, as I’m sure I’ll be sharing some comments here and there live from my vacation.

Are you going to the Food and Wine Festival this year? What booths and dishes are you most excited about?

Beef & Booze: My Food & Wine Festival Menu Selections, Part Two

18 Aug

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Are you ready for another bunch of my Food & Wine Festival menu picks? (I really wish I’d used “picks” instead of “selections” in the title, but it’s too late now) If you didn’t read Part One, check it out HERE! Now let’s dive in!

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I will work Trey Songz into every post, so help me!

Refreshment Port–Dole Whip with crème de cacao white, I guess

This name just really confuses me. It’s basically a Dole booth, so why is it given that dull and generic-sounding name? Anyway. I’m sad they got rid of the pineapple fritters they had last year, as I was pretty intrigued by them. Alas. I’ll just get the overpriced Dole Whip with booze. Maybe the slushy Dragon Berry thing. Dole Whip in Epcot just seems plain wrong, but sometimes you have to just suck it up and eat Dole Whip in Epcot, I suppose. That’s the moral of this vacation.

Greece– Spanakopita

I’m just going to keep saying that in an exaggerated Italian accent because I am Michael Scott. I wonder if John Stamos hangs around this booth. I’d like to spana his kopita! I don’t know. Leave me alone. It’s a spinach pie thing and I am going to slide it down my gullet. The alcohol at this booth does nothing for me.

New Zealand– Some wine, I guess

Kiwi a-go-go! There better be an attractive cast member at this booth for me to swoon over. Do they have a song in New Zealand called “Why Don’t We Get Munted and Root?” I’ll have to ask the cast member. The food here doesn’t do much for me. Although, “How are your lip mussels? Can I try them out?” would be a really choice pick-up line and I really, really hope I don’t remember that when I’m tipsy. Ok, before I make some more lech-y creep-o comments–the only alcohol here is wine so I guess wine it is!

Africa– Beef tips

So what’s the deal with this booth? The booth itself says South Africa. The menu and web sites say Africa. They’re not interchangeable, Disney. Quit pulling this shit. Africa is a, say it with me now, CONTINENT. Obviously Disney plays fast and loose with the Food and Wine kiosks but this just irks me. The only thing here that sounds remotely appetizing to me are the beef tenderloin tips berbere style with okra, jalapeños, tomato and pap, but I don’t feel super enthusiastic about it. I am going to be so sick of beef on this trip. I may have switch Twitter handles with Dan.

Brazil– Frozen Caipirinha

While I’m pretty intrigued by the pork belly, it has that pesky, nasty cilantro. I may just give it a try anyway–like I said before, I can deal with cilantro in some dishes and this one may be worth the risk. It is served on black beans with tomato. Last year it included avocado, but that’s not listed on the menu this year. I’m not sure if it’s an oversight or if they’ve gotten rid of it. SUSPENSE! You’ll just have to wait for the exciting conclusion! The pao de queijo, a cheese bread, sounds good. However, I’m really not sure I’m going to be really wanting a piece of bread in the hot, Florida sun. I will most definitely be getting a frozen Caipirinha, which the internet claims is Brazil’s national cocktail. A quick Google of “Brazilian men” also tells me that they are all very hot and usually in some state of undress, so I look forward to that as well.

A typical Brazilian man, according to Google.

A typical Brazilian man, according to Google.

Scotland– Vegetarian Haggis

OCH! The land of tartan and ginger. I’ve gotta say, googling “Scottish men” is not nearly as fun as “Brazilian men”. It’s not the kilts. It’s the white kneesocks. So, I’m totally going to go for the vegetarian haggis here. It’s such a cop-out. They really ought to have the real deal. I’m not saying I would eat it, but come on. In any case, I’ve never had rutabaga so that’ll be just crazy fun. No booze for Ole Clarfy at this booth. Sorry scotch lovers, I am not among you. I really wanted to work “cold-hearted harbinger of haggis” into this entry, but it wasn’t meant to be. Well, except right there. But that doesn’t really count.

Australia– Pavlova

I’ve heard a lot of great things about the lamb chop here, but I won’t be having it. It’s covered in a mint pesto and the only time I like mint is if it’s in some kind of sweet. The other option is shrimp, which I do not want. Luckily, the dessert here sounds so good that the name alone had me drooling. It’s described as a “crispy meringue shell with fresh berries and vanilla custard”, which sounds absolutely perfect on a hot summer day. I’m very much looking forward to this one.

Brewer’s Collection– Not Sure

Not Sure? What an odd name for a beer! Wokka wokka! Anyway, I’d really like to do a beer flight here but each one has at least one beer I’m not interested in trying. Ah, the trials of a solo trip. I’ll probably still opt to get Beer Flight #1, which has Radeberger Pilsner, BraufactuM Colonia, BraufactuM Palor and Schöfferhofer Grapefruit. I’m not huge on Grapefruit but I may suck it up. Literally? Sure. If I could just switch it with the Altenmünster Oktoberfest from the second flight, I’d be happy. The second flight has too much dark for my liking. We’ll see. I may opt to just sample one or two that I’m interested in. Pilsner in a glass, or the first flight, I can pop bottles all night ’cause baby I can do whatever I liiiiike… Yeah, I can do whatever I liiiiike…

China– Potstickers and Kung Fu Punch

Potstickers sound really good to me right now and so it’s clouding my judgement. Mongolian beef in a bun with chili mayo sounds tasty but again I find myself guessing I’m not going to want it when I’m drenched in sweat and hotter than whatever pepper currently grows in Living with the Land. I think I’ll take a break from beer here and opt to get a vodka drink. (I’ll be one whiskey drink away from hitting the ole Chumbawumba superfecta.) I’m not sure what flavor Kung Fu is, but I bet it packs a real… Nope. Not gonna do it.

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Stay tuned for Part Three!

Beef & Booze: My Food & Wine Festival Menu Selections, Part One

16 Aug
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Believe it or not, I made this on Paint!

In just 37 short days, I will be arriving in Walt Disney World for my first ever visit to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival! I’m staying at an Epcot hotel, so I plan on attending each day I’m there. This trip is about slowing my commando roll and relaxing while fully taking in the Festival. It may seem a little contradictory to say that this is supposed to be a relaxing, easy trip as I map out what I plan on ordering from each booth in great detail, but I felt it was necessary. I’m not exactly a “foodie”, so it’s going to remove a lot of stress for me going in if I already know what exactly the dishes are and whether or not I want them. Plus, it’s fun!

I know it’s ambitious, but I’d really like to hit every booth. I’m not going to stress if this doesn’t happen. This trip is all about doing whatever I feel so inclined to do at the time. Maybe I’ll want to grab another pork slider from Hawaii instead of ordering something I don’t particularly want from Terra. Maybe I’ll just want to sit on the Boardwalk and eat a slice of pizza. Maybe I’ll want to spend a whole day in the Magic Kingdom and skip the Festival. Who knows! But I’d rather go in with a good knowledge of the menus because it’s going to make the experience better for me.

I decided since I had been meaning to write some trip planning posts (or just some posts in general… oops…) that this was the perfect topic. I’ve gone through, booth by booth, kiosk by kiosk, and listed what I plan on ordering from each and why. I’m going to split this up into a few posts because DAMN there are a lot of booths. After I get back, I’ll let you know what I got and what I thought! Also, a note before I start–I had it in my head that the CMs in each booth would be from that country since that’s how it works in the rest of World Showcase. Somewhere around Scotland, the logical part of my brain was like, “You know they’re just going to be regular food service CMs, right?” So it ruined a lot of jokes and several intricate fantasies but just go with it.

And now, without further rambling ado, in a pretty random and weird order, my Epcot Food and Wine Festival 2014 menu picks!

Morocco– Kefta Pocket and a Casa Beer

I’m not a big baklava fan, and the other option is a spicy shrimp roll with cilantro and mint sauce. I cannot think of anything I would rather eat less than a spicy shrimp roll with cilantro and mint sauce. It’s almost as though the dish was specifically tailored to contain things I don’t like. So, Kefta Pocket is it! It’s pretty simple–seasoned ground beef in a pita pocket. Wham, bam, give me my damn Casa Beer already. Please. Ma’am. Thank you.

Desserts and Champagne– Trio and Rosé

The dessert trio this year sounds friggin’ amazing. Passion fruit coconut creamsicle, blueberry lime cheesecake roll and chocolate espresso opera cake. Enough said. Weak item going in looks like the opera cake, but there’s only one way to find out! And Imma be like, “Yo Trey? Do you think you can buy me a tiny cup of Rosé for $15?”

lol no. no I will not.

lol no. no I cannot.

Singapore– Tiger Beer

I don’t eat fish, so the seared mahi mahi is out. I’m slightly bummed about this because I would like to try the Singa sauce, but alas. The other option is lemongrass chicken curry with coconut and jasmine rice. That… does not sound appetizing to me. So Tiger Beer it is!

France– Escargot (??) and Sparkling Pomegranate Kir

I’m so France-ay… Gonna eat some snaaails! I’m not sure if it’ll last, but I feel really compelled to try the escargot. I wanted to try some new things at the festival, and escargot fits the bill. The little bread bowls they were in last year looked so good, but this year they are on a tart. I’m just going to play this one by ear and see how I feel once I’m actually standing there. I can always go with good old crème brûlée. And Sparkling Wine and Pomegranate Liqueur on a hot day? Yes please! At some point I will probably also have the La Passion Martini Slush (vodka, Grey Goose Le Citron, cranberry and passion fruit juice), another refreshing-sounding option!

Canada– Moosehead

Ah, exotic Canda. As far as my experience is concerned, Canada is a place where you either go look at water or you wear a Sou’wester hat whilst following a man playing a bagpipe from pub to pub drinking Moosehead. Moosehead is all I’m really interested in at this booth. I don’t understand cheese soup. Is it not just eating queso with a spoon? Stick it in a bread bowl and maybe we can talk. Fish? BZZZT. Steak? YES! With mushrooms? BZZT. So just beer me a Moosehead, eh?

South Korea– Kimchi dog OR lettuce wrap and Soju fruit slushy

I really can’t decide if I want the kimchi dog with spicy mustard sauce or the roasted pork lettuce wrap with kimchi slaw. I’ll just have to see what sounds good that day. And a tiny, overpriced slushy! Hooray!

Belgium– EVERYTHING

Belgium, you delicious son of a bitch! Here you can get a potato and leek waffle with beer-braised beef or a Belgian waffle topped with either berry compote or chocolate ganache. And every damn one looks fine as hell. I am really looking forward to this booth. I may opt to try the beer flight here, as they replaced last year’s Leffe Brune with Stella Artois Cidre and the Brune was really the only one I wasn’t interested in. The other three included in the flight are Hoegaarden, Stella Artois, Leffe Blonde. After a few drinks, I’ll probably be tweeting a really hilarious Hoegaarden joke once I make it to Belgium. Just you wait. And riddle me this… On the menu board–and I checked!–it definitely says “BelgiAN waffle” and yet on the official Disney site (and thusly many blogs) it says “BelgiUM waffle”. It is bringing me great distress and I cannot go on this way. Something must be done.

Look what I grew for your in my ho garden!

Look what I grew for your in my ho garden!

Japan– No freaking clue.

I really want to get my whole passport thingy stamped, so I don’t want to miss any booths but this booth does absolutely nothing for me. I’m not into the seafood, I don’t eat hands either, and sake tastes like somebody put vodka in the microwave. I would’ve liked last years Sapporo Draft, but it’s been unfortunately replaced this year by Kirin beer, which is absolutely foul. The only thing left is the teriyaki gyoza bun, which sounds like a total yawn. I suppose if I want my stamp, that’s what I’ll have to get. Life really sucks sometimes, ya know?

Farm Fresh– Burr

Farm Fresh replaces the Florida Local booth from last year, which I think is a really dumb name change, myself. But I digress. There’s a bacon and egg whatever dish with corn and I am just not feeling it. The other option is griddled “yard bird”. The hell is a yard bird? Like a starling? Are they serving griddled crow? I don’t know enough about bird law to comment on the legalities of this, but it’s moot anyway because I did a Google and apparently yard bird is “a military recruit who is assigned menial tasks”. I wonder what cut they use? I hope they use his or her hands for the hand rolls. It would be such a waste to just throw them away. BUT I DIGRESS. This booph has a bunch of beers, one of which is described by one reviewer as being “hazy brown in color with generous foamy beige head”, which may make you chuckle if you are also a thirteen year old boy but I digress but also there is a key lime wine which sounds good, too. Okay? Okay.

I’m going to stop there for today! Stay tuned for Part Two!

Disney Channel Throwback: In a Heartbeat

7 Dec

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Do you remember In a Heartbeat? It aired on the Disney Channel from August 2000 to March 2001 and was about teen EMTs. Kind of like ER Junior. It starred Reagan Pasternak as the perfectionist, blond cheerleader type, Val. You may remember her as Veronica Dotwebb in The Brady Bunch in the White House. Just kidding. No one does.

It also starred one Mr. Shawn Ashmore, popular with the horny tween set in my day, as Tyler. He’s been in a few X-Men movies and he was also the sexy sexface Brad in Cadet Kelly.

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lol maggots

Shawn was hot, sure. But he wasn’t my favorite. Oh no. My favorite, of course, was the token “bad boy”, Jamie. He was played by Christopher Ralph, who starred with Sean Ashmore on the Animorphs TV series previously. As a kid, I was a total Animorph nerd and Christopher Ralph played my favorite character, Tobias. So you could say I was a bit To-BIASED going into In a Heartbeat. (HEYOOOOO!)

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“I’m so troubled. If only some girl would come along and change me…”


Also notable is Lauren Collins as Val’s little sister, Brooke. Of course, we all know her best as Paige how the fuck do you spell Michalchuk. And Danso Gordon as Tyler’s BFF.

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She macked on Drake once, y’all. Ms. Kwan was all, “THESE ROOMS ARE CONNECTED BY INTERCOM!”

Luckily for us, there are a fair amount of episodes on YouTube. Here’s part one of the pilot to get you started. I love how they set things up with Tyler on the field, Val cheering on the sidelines and then cut under the bleachers to Jamie doing sexy bad boy things. Whatever, he was like 23 when they made this show. I agree with my younger self. Good choice, Clarflet. He is hot.

Anyway, here is the pilot to get your nostalgia bone throbbing. Enjoy.

You Have Found a Thousand Eyes: Magic Journeys

25 Nov

I once wrote a hilarious blog about Magic Journeys. It disappeared. This is not that blog.

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Sort of reminds me of the Silence of the Lambs poster. So.

It was a part of a entire series I wrote about the Imagination Pavilion. Out of bitterness, I haven’t attempted to re-write any parts until now.

Magic Journeys was an Opening Day attraction in the Imagination Pavilion at Epcot. It later replaced the Mickey Mouse Revue in 1987 before closing for good in 1993. Everyone who made it clearly had some really, really good shit.

It was directed by Murray Lerner, a best documentary Oscar-winner and fan of rock musicians your stoner aunt is also into. The music is by the duly-lauded Sherman Brothers, who in my imagination ate some magic Mickey waffles before penning the theme song.

Just look at these lyrics:

You are riding on the winds
Where the universe begins
Through the atoms that repose
In the heartbeat of a rose

Heartbeat of a rose, eh? Ok then.

It’s suposed to be “a look at the world through the eyes of a child”. It’s more like “a look at the world through the eyes of someone who has some really, really good shit”. I know, you’re all like, “WE GET IT CLARF. DRUGS.” but watch it. WATCH it and tell me it could be made if marijuana didn’t exist.

I mean, the echoing laughter of children has always walked a fine line between adorable and really fucking creepy. I’d say it’s just the tip of the iceberg of really fucking creepy in Magic Journeys. We have:

-creepy flying laughing kid
-creepy carousel with kids reaching for a gold ring
-creepy kids riding carousel horses through space with kids singing “trick or treat trick or treat…” in the background
-bats fly at your face before a scary witch face appears on the moon
-A SLOW MOTION CIRCUS and all the kids watch and laugh like it’s totally okay
-creepy music box music playing
-a questionable ringmaster magician type appears and shoots fire at children while they laugh their creepy echo laughs
-kids shrink and fly through space
-EYE BALL

Even if you don’t think they were all on drugs, you must admit that the whole thing is like some weird fever dream. That said, it’s amazing and I love it and I think it is the only thing that could sensibly replace Captain EO at the Disney Parks. It makes even less sense than EO, but somehow more. It’s dated. It’s cheesy. It’s unintentionally frightening. It will get a song in your head. And I think that Disney fans would be much more accepting of it considering it was an OG Epcot attraction plus features a Sherman Brothers acid trip song.

So let’s hear it for this wonderfully creepy, weird, decidedly classic attraction that I wish I heard mentioned more often by fans. Ya know, besides me making drug jokes on Twitter.

B Ticket Blog’s Holiday Giveaway!

25 Nov

Well hello there! I do believe it’s time for a giveaway! Enter for your chance to win the amazing Poster Art of the Disney Parks book–a must-have for any parks fan that would also make a fabulous Christmas gift if you already have a copy!

Ooooh. Ahhhh.

Ooooh. Ahhhh.

Click here to see the ways to enter! To listen to the podcast, you can either click here or find us on iTunes. Good luck!

The Clarf Movie Ride

12 Nov

Who among us hasn’t thought about what they would put in their own Great Movie Ride? Your own personal favorite movie scenes complete with state-of-the-art Audio-Animatronics. Your favorite lines repeated every time you ride. Not just “great” movies, but the greatEST movies–according to you. This post is exactly what my ride would be–the photos are the scenes and Audio-Animatronics I imagine, any caption in quotes is the audio you’d hear, and I’ve even written some cheesy guide dialogue in italics.  So, without further ado, come take a ride on The Clarf Movie Ride!!
tease

First let’s visit some of those great movie musicals, starting with the 1986 Frank Oz film Little Shop of Horrors starring Rick Moranis, Ellen Greene and Levi Stubbs.

Little Shop

“I’d do I-don’t-know-what to get outta Skid!”

Then on our left, we see Julie Andrews, arms outstretched…
Before that in 1952, Julie Andrews shared with us the sound of music…

sound of music

The hills go from here all the way to here.

The role of Anita in the film version of West Side Story was played by Rita Moreno, but did you know Betty Wand dubbed her singing parts?

WEST SIDE STORY

I got you, Betty.

Be careful, folks. This place gives me the creeps.

On our left we see…

Beetlejuice2

“Come on, people. Say it. SAY IT.”

And as we come around the bend, on our right is…

Beetlejuice 1988 rŽal. : Tim Burton Winona Ryder Collection Christophel

dooby doo boo dee boop boop bee dooboo doop!

Then as we come to a stop, we pick up a hitchhiker!

peewee_hitchhike

Pee-Wee asks us for help finding his bike and hops on alongside our guide. Then the doors open and we see…

theyreheeere

“They’re heeeere”

Guide: Who’s here, Carol Anne?

Pee-Wee: “Here” is the Secret Word! Let’s all scream!

Everyone: AHHHHHHHHHHHH!!

poltergeist

” It lies to her. It tells her things only a child can understand. It has been using her to restrain the others. To her, it simply is another child. To us, it is The Beast.”

Pee-Wee: AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!

Guide: Did she say the Secret Word?

Pee-Wee: NO, I’M JUST REALLY SCARED!

Together: AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!

Our vehicle enters a dirty New York City scene. We pass an audio-animatronic figure of a frightened Kevin McCallister. He asks for our help pointing out Harry and Marv to police. They shine their spotlight on them thanks to our pointing and announce over a megaphone to freeze because they’re under arrest.

Pee-Wee: IT’S MY BIKE!!

Pee-Wee runs into the scene and is reunited with his bike at last.

badbadbad

I am so sorry for this Paint Faux-toshop.

How’s that for a happy ending, folks? Looks like we saved the day!

“Clair de Lune” is playing on a piano as we come upon the next scene…

We now enter the Penmark home, the setting of 1956’s The Bad Seed.

Bad Seed

I just want a Rhoda AA reeeeal baaaad.

We hear a tea kettle whistling as we move to the next scene.

Uh, excuse me… Is anyone here? The water’s boiling…

Mrs Doubtfire

“HEEEEEEEL-LOOOOOOO!”

Oh!! Why, it’s Robin Williams in Mrs. Doubtfire! Dude looks like a lady! Don’t forget to ride Rock n Roller Coaster!

The next scene is from Titanic, when Rose dies and finds herself on the Titanic once more.

Titanic

“ROSE!”

JACK! I’ll never let go… Or maybe I will.

And finally, we hear triumphant music as we see on our right…

bigwWhy, it’s the BIG DOUBLE YOU!

MMMMW

“DID YOU HEAR THAT??”

The entire cast is on our right.

Ethel Merman: DID YOU HEAR THAT? THEY’VE SEEN THE BIG DOUBLE YOU!

Milton Berle: Will ya SHUT UP? (to Guide) You’ve seen the Big W?

Guide: Well, yes! It’s….

The Guide is cut off as the entire cast starts squabbling. We pass Johnathan Winters as he finally sees…

winters

“That’s it! Sure! LOOK!”

Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed this tour through some of the greatest movie moments. But we’ve only scratched the surface of movies that Annie loves. Here are even more of her favorite films…

And we end with a montage of even more of my favorites, including Groundhog Day (“What if there is no tomorrow? There wasn’t one today!”), My Girl (“Ode to ice cream, by Vada Sultenfuss.”) and The Neverending Story (“FALCOOOOOOR!”).

So next time I go to Disney World, I’ll bring an umbrella.

Ok, that’s not my real ending. I just said aloud, “So next time I go to Disney World…” and Wes filled in the rest. And I was amused so I typed it. Get off my back already. What I really wanted to say was that next time I go to Disney World, hopefully I’ll ride next to an Imagineer on a ride and they’ll take their Imagineer wand and tap me on the nose and I’ll get to ignore this whole Intellectual Property thing and make THE CLARF MOVIE RIDE!!

And there was much rejoicing.

On behalf of Disney’s Hollywood Studios, I’d like to thank you for reading. Now, before we wrap this blog, we have one more scene. It’s called… THE EXIT! BITCHES! YOLO!

I’m the Baby, GOTTA LOVE ME: Dinosaurs “Big Songs” Cassette

8 Nov

ImageI remember listening to the Dinosaurs “Big Songs” cassette all the time as a kid, much like the Simply Mad about the Mouse cassette. Of course, the main difference between these is that “Big Songs” is definitely meant for children. Listening back now, I can’t imagine an adult enjoying this much. And I’m saying this as an adult woman who listens to Disney songs regularly. It’s a fun trip down memory lane but, wow. I’m not going to be adding this to any playlist. So let’s get down to the songs!

1. “I’m A Dinosaur (I Can Do Whatever I Want)”

This song has Baby Sinclair proclaiming that he can do whatever he wants (’cause he’s a dinosaur). It’s, just, exceedingly obnoxious. And yet I remember just thinking it was HILARIOUS as a kid. I am retroactively ashamed.

Sample lyric: No one can tell me I have to be quiet / Or take a nap at four / I can do whatever I want / ‘CAUSE I’M A DINOSAUR

2. “In a Perfect World”

This song reminds me of a song from a musical set in the 50’s with a splash of Aretha (what with the spelling). It’s even got the whole “Tell us about it, Charlene!” bit at the beginning. It’s about how in a perfect world there wouldn’t be any war. Oh, and all you’d do is shop and eat and you’re a natural blonde. I assume (read:hope) that it was meant to mock teenagers’ unique mix of selfish needs and wide-eyed optimism about changing the world. I must’ve listened to this one a lot, as it will randomly pop into my head from time to time.

Sample lyric: In a perfect world / Math wouldn’t be so hard / I’d have no credit limit on my dino credit card / I’d look great in a leotard

3. “I Wanna Be King”

This song effing blows. It’s like Poison meets Springsteen meets Lame As F**k. I didn’t even make it all the way through.

Sample Lyric: no

4. “Grandma’s Comin'”

Mothers-in-Law, amirite? This is a big band jazz sort of number–Louis Armstrong-esque. And it’s hilarious cuz MOTHERS-IN-LAW AMIRITE?

Sample Lyric: I wish I could make her disappear / Or maybe something worse

5. “Stone Age Bayou”

Little Annie, seriously? Why did you love this song? Weirdo.

Sample Lyric: He’d be the lizard / I’d wanna spend my life with / We’d build a home / Full of lava and stone

6. “I’m the Baby (Gotta Love Me)”

This is the song everyone remembers. Just reading the title makes you hear Baby Sinclair in your head. “I’m the baby, GOTTA LOVE ME!!!!” For some reason, this song doesn’t annoy me. I recognize it as annoying and yet I accept it. I even like it. I crack up every time we hear Earl go, “FRAN!!!” And I approve of Grandma’s deadpan delivery of “Don’t try this at home.” Baby Sinclair does say “poop”, though. So.

Sample Lyric: I take every chance to make a poop in my pants / But I’m the baby, and ya GOT TO

7. “Coldblooded Guy” 

I really can’t listen to this song and not think of Audrey II from Little Shop of Horrors. It’s like Rock n Roll meets a really horrible boss. Or something. If you’re a working stiff, it may hit a little close to home.

Sample Lyric: I’m ill-tempered, disrespectful, nasty, cruel and vicious / I had a family once and they were delicious

8. “He’s a Lizard”

This is sort of a dinosaur torch song. All it really makes me want to do is listen to Reptar! on Ice.

Sample Lyric: I sit by the door and I wait for his roar as he staggers home / Smelling of lunch box and bark

9. “Poor Slobs with Terrible Jobs”

Another that I just find sort of depressing. It’s going to pop into my head whenever I’m hating my job now; I can feel it.

Sample Lyric: We’re scared to quit and on top of it / When the climate changes we’ll all freeze

10. “Eon after Eon”

Ah, yes. Now THIS I want to sing loudly to at 3am with my friends. It’s the dinosaur version of every late 80’s/early 90’s movie ballad. It’s got an electric guitar, a clarinet, and a harmony-heavy duet between a smooth-voiced woman and a soulful man. YES THIS IS THE ONE YOU GUYS.

Sample Lyric: Next time you’re down-hearted and you feel you don’t belong / It doesn’t mean that no one likes you, I’ll be here to say they’re wrong

11. “Be a Herbivore”

The food in Earl’s fridge begs him to become a herbivore. I don’t even know what to think. But I kind of want a “Go eat a leaf!” shirt.

Sample Lyric: As a snack, we’re a bore / Come on, be a herbivore

12. “Snoozin’ Time”

Oh thank god no, it’s the last one. This is a lullably from Fran to Baby Sinclair. It’s hilaaarious because she’s naming all the bad things he’s done all day but singing a sweet lullaby. Get it? GET IT? IT’S HILARIOUS

Sample Lyric: no

I have to say, listening to this entire album felt like a bit of a chore. They probably could’ve done, like, eight songs. But I remember listening to it all the time in my boom box, so it was fun to remember all those familiar tunes. I’m a little irritated with Little Annie for not being a cynical 5 year old and hating this, but I was at least 11 before I realized that everything is stupid.

While the songs are heavy on entertainingly corny dinosaur jokes, it doesn’t begin to match the wit of the show. The show was sarcastic and the jokes were layered. This album is a one-trick pony, with the exception of “I’m the Baby” and “Eon After Eon”. So, if you’ll excuse me, I need to relearn all the words to the latter so I can tipsily serenade Wes when he gets off of work. He’s gonna love it.

 

 

 

Disney Trolls Us All: It’s Tough to Be a Bug

2 Nov

Forget Dinosaur! The real terror of Disney’s Animal Kingdom is located underneath the Tree of Life. If you manage to make it through the queue unscathed, you are treated to the most terrifying 4D show to ever exist: It’s Tough to Be a Bug.

I can’t help but feel like Disney is trolling us. The supposed “message” of the show is that bugs are our friends, but the true message is that bugs are Flikkin’ scary and you should live each day in abject terror. This post will be peppered with screenshots of actual reviews of the ride which prove my point.

As I mentioned in the first paragraph, the queue of the version of It’s Tough to Be a Bug at Disney’s Animal Kingdom is located underneath the Tree of Life. Before the netting was added, this really set the tone for the rest of the ride as the walkway was littered with unconscious guests who had been struck by falling tree limbs. The tree itself is just dumb–ANYONE can make a fake tree! I can get one at Walmart right now if I want!

treeoflifeatkmart

Or Kmart, if you’re fancy.

 

Alternately, in Disney’s California Adventure, there is no Tree of Death Life, so the queue is a different kind of horror show…

auntfarm

The aunts… They were everywhere…

 

I mean, sure. There’s a warning sign that says it may be frightening for children. But it’s a 4D movie! About bugs! Who could have known it would be frightening to children? Plus there is no warning for the worst part of the whole affair…

panic attack

The warning sign doesn’t say anything about RUINING MY DAY!

Yes, it would be nice for Disney to warn me before I am shivved in the back by “wasps”. I don’t want to assume here. I never have and I never would and I never will. This isn’t the B Ticket Blog of Assumptions. But I think this reviewer is possibly prone to exaggeration. Just a possibility. A slight one. I’m not even sure where I’m getting that impression. I do know they need to add some things to the warning sign… “Will cause panic attacks in children who panic when being stabbed in the back!” AND HEY WAIT A MINUTE!! How did she know about the bugs that run under your butt if she didn’t get to finish the show? What is this sorcery?

Now, as I was Googling to confirm that you are indeed poked (and not blasted with air or shocked as some people seem to think) I came across a LOT of whiners. I’ll admit that I sit forward in my seat but not from fear of grave injury. I saw one person claiming it broke their skin! I have a lot of trouble believing that anyone is injured, even acutely, by being poked by a rubber stick with a rounded tip. But it’s more believable than, say, someone sticking hypodermic needles in there with AIDS in them. Which would make a pretty good Urban Legend, so get on that everybody. Whoever makes the scariest chain e-mail wins!

Half of the fun of this ride is waiting for the screaming to start. Call me sick, call me depraved, call me Claus, but man it is entertaining. When I have kids, I wouldn’t be surprised if I purposefully take them on here just to scare the crap out of them and then laugh.

How to cap this post? I know! How about I post a hilaaaarious review I came across. I read it and think, ‘Wow. Now that is humor.’ If only Javier hadn’t misspelled Flik at the end, it would be COMEDY PERFECTION.

I'll let you decide if that last paragraph was sarcastic.

I’ll let you decide if that last paragraph was sarcastic.