When you're a child, meeting characters is so exciting! Suddenly, the heroes that you see on the screen are right there! They want to give you a hug! They want to give you a high five! They want to tolerate you kicking them and hanging all over them while your mum takes 50 million photos! Nothing could be finer! You love the characters even more than before! You demand more clothing, toys, movies and books with these characters because they're REAL! You met them. You KNOW!
This is, of course, why Disney and those other companies have characters at their parks and why so many children's birthday party venues and activity centres will have characters roaming around. While there is that capitalistic ulterior motive, it is usually good fun for kids.
But for adults? Well, meeting characters is not quite the same. At best, it's awkward or mildly unsettling. At worst, it's so freaky that you it makes you squirm.
Here are some of the reasons why:
When you're a kid you think "Oooo isn't Pluto so cuddly!" As an adult, you realise that instead of fur, this dog is apparently made out of a substance similar to shag carpeting from the 1970s. You hope the suit isn't that old. Dear God, if it is, you hope it's washed regularly. It must be crawling with germs from filthy children. Why did you shake its hand? Now, you're going to need a tetanus shot.
Even if it's the middle of winter, you can be sure the person in there is sweating buckets. That means that the inside of Winnie the Pooh probably smells like sweaty balls. Or armpits. Or a little of both. Bleh.
If Buzz Lightyear is 6 feet tall, how the Hell big is Andy? What does his poor Mum feed him for dinner, whole cows? And what about Mickey? If a mouse that tall was that close to food under any other circumstances, all those mums that are shoving their children toward him would be shrieking, standing on benches and hitting them with their purses.
He's a duck without trousers. He has a shirt. A hat. A red bow tie. But no bloody trousers. Yet there he is, walking all over the place hugging children close with his feathered private parts all out in the open. Pervert.
Obviously. But you have to pretend like you don't know it or else you're a heartless bastard. What do you say to another grown ass adult who is dressed like Goofy, or the Genie from Aladdin or Elmo.
There isn't really much you can do to avoid characters if you have a child. When they approach, just grit your teeth and try to make it through. If it gets really bad, give Junior a pinch so he starts to cry and then blame the character. On second thought, no, just grit your teeth and bare it...or pinch the character. That might work!
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