Seriously - WTH?

Calling out the stupid...and boy is there a lot to call out.

Monday, April 2, 2012

B is for Blind People - Why does Disney Hate Them?

I think Disney, hates blind people.

In order to illustrate what I am talking about, I have to tell a little story. I met my now-ex-husband when he was working for Disney. I won't bore you with the details so in short, eventually we got married. He and his family had an obsession with Disney unlike anything I had ever seen. Not only had he been employed there, but  so had all of his friends and eventually his mother and sister too.

FORE!!!!!!!!
EPCOT -Disney World
Because of this, we were able to visit the Walt Disney Parks whenever we wanted, which was often because it was free, well you know, besides having to sign over your first born for a burger and to take a mortgage out if you wanted fries and a drink with it.

OK, back to my point. One of the places we visited was EPCOT. If you aren't familiar with this park it is best known for what looks like a golf ball that is larger than Tiger Woods ego. I am still relatively unclear as to why it is in EPCOT when you consider the rest of the park is a compilation of several countries that you can visit, enjoy the scenery, and dine on the native foods, which the women and children normally do, while the men head over to the English pub and get hammered on beer ordered by the yard ( as in 3 feet tall).

I realize I may have lost many of you who are now on the first plane to Florida for yards of beer, but for those that are still with me, on with the story because this is why I believe Disney hates the Blind.

In order to get to EPCOT, you must walk down some stairs, stroll down The Boardwalk which is a place with several restaurants, face painters, and balloon toys that cost more than my first car. After you head down the Boardwalk, which has a lake or river or some Disney creation flowing along side it, you come to the ferry. You stand in line, get on this boat that eventually (and by eventually, I mean you go about 15 feet) drops you off at the front of EPCOT where you purchase your tickets to enter the park. Once in, you walk down a winding path littered with shops selling toys, t-shirts and other must have Disney memorabilia that  will eventually end up in a cardboard box under your basement stairs or in your attic.After you have spent most of your life savings, you continue down the bricked path. THIS is where you find the Braille map.
My ex-in-laws (that aren't blind) finding the Braille map.
So let's assume you are blind and alone or with other blind friends (because apparently I think they travel in packs). How the hell will you even know where to find the Braille map? Shouldn't there be one on the Boardwalk, another when you get off the ferry, and another as soon as you enter EPCOT. Is it fair that you need a Braille map to find the Braille map? The only good news is that once you are inside, maybe you can find a country that is more conscientious to the needs of the Blind and if not, you can always get drunk on a couple yards of beer. Just be careful not to run into the giant golf ball on the way.

Tomorrow's Blog: C is for Colonoscopy Sweepstakes (It's real, I swear).

31 comments:

  1. Loved this post- and from what you described you would think they would hand a map that is braille, or meet the search and rescue team but then I have also wondered why they also put those braille buttons on drive up atm's :)

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    1. I wonder that too! Want to hear something freaky? I was driving one day and got behind this van that was going pretty slow. I couldn't go around and was getting frustrated when I noticed the sign on the back that read: This vehicle is being driven by a blind person. Please be patient" and then it had a little thing underneath that said "made possible by..." (I don't remember the name of the company).

      I have enough problems squeezing through those tight ATM poles. I can't imagine being blind and trying to do it.

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  2. Interesting post! It does make me wonder how theme parks make their environment accessible for all disabled persons.

    Nutschell
    www.thewritingnut.com

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    1. Sorry if you receive this twice. I responded once and it didn't post. Usually, Disney in particular, is great at accommodating the handicapped. Maybe they have some special service if you call and say you are blind and are coming on vacation to the park or if you are a resident maybe you could tell someone at the gate. Like I said, very strange that you would need a Braille map to find the Braille map.

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  3. Usually they are very good, especially Disney.Maybe they offer something if you make reservations of come buy and buy a ticket and they can see that you are blind, but it seemed like an awfully stupid place to put a Braille map.

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  4. I often wonder at the reasoning of the people who decide where these things should be placed. Because there must be a reasoning. Right ... ?

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    1. Drugs...I think they are on drugs. That or well, Disney is all about aesthetics. They probably didn't consider the blind actually needing to use it, but rather thought,

      "Hey we have to have a Braille map. Should we put it here in the front?"

      And some fancy Disney Feng shui expert said, No, no no. That would block the azalea bush of Mickey Mouse. Put it here, by this tree...in the middle of the park where it won't be in anyone's way."

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  5. I worked for the Disney Store for 5 years and you are right...they are all on drugs. At least my co workers were anyways ;).

    It would be just like them to put that map where a blind person couldn't find it just because it effed up their "vision" for what that part of the park is supposed to look like xD.

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    1. LOL It's that crazy Disney mentality. I appreciate that everything is beautiful, but it also needs to be practical.

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  6. LOL! Shouldn't they be handing out park maps in braille at the entrance? Although I have no idea how they would fit it all on one brochure.

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    1. Right?!? LOL But again, it's Disney so instead of handing the brochure out and the entrance, they would probably hand it out somewhere stupid like in the middle of the park somewhere:)

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  7. 1. I'm new to your blog from the AtoZ challenge - nice to meet you. I'm a new follower.

    2. I'm sure a lot of businesses only do the minimums to meet the laws for servicing disabled people. Maybe it is the minimum to have a Braille map, regardless of placement.

    3. I'm pretty certain visually impaired people are more concerned with crossing busy streets and being able to read a menu at a restaurant than finding the Braille map at EPCOT.

    Just my two cents, as the mother of a visually impaired (not completely blind) son.

    Great post.

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    1. Hello Margo and welcome to my blog:)

      I agree that there are more important things to focus on then the Braille map at EPCOT. I am not blind, but I was in an accident several years ago and have vision problems as a result (I actually type my blog by looking at the keyboard because I can barely look at computer screen ( and sometimes I can't at all).

      I also did volunteer work for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. I guess that is part of what surprises me so much about this map being where it was in Disney. They are always so good at accommodating the disabled, making the placement all the more odd.

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  8. I am often amused by such absurdity. Next you're going to tell me they had the wheel chair ramp at the base of a set of stairs. Disney: the Evil Empire!

    I'm curious, do they have braille at art exibits so those without sight can read the names of the paintings?

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    1. Martin, that wouldn't surprise me in the least! LOL

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  9. Ok, this is the funniest thing I've read all day--thank you, if you were here, I'd by you a yard of beer to celebrate.
    Happy A to Z, and thanks for making me laugh!

    I'm your newest follower too!

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    1. Awesome! And you're welcome. If I were there, I'd take you up on that yard of beer, although I am not sure my arms are long enough to hold it...I'd probably end up dumping a yard and a half of it all over myself:)

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  10. How funny! You did lose me momentarily at yards of beer. i admit it. Following! Just need to find the braille follow button...here somewhere....maybe....hmmmm.

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    1. LOL, sorry I had it hidden. Sometimes I'm sarcastic and mean...and blond.

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  11. As someone who grew up near Disney and still frequents Epcot (I recently blogged about it myself), I appreciate your humor. I wonder if they offer braille maps to be carried like the ones that they give their other patrons? I would think it's required by the Americans with Disabilities Act. Just sayin'

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  12. Hi Heather! I would think/hope so. With as conscientious as Disney is about disabilities, it made the placement of the Braille map all the more strange.

    I'm going to have to check out that post you wrote:)

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  13. I never thought about this, but then again, I have never been to Disney World. This girl was born and raised in SoCal. I went to Disneyland, and that place loves everyone.

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    1. Oh, no doubt Disney is awesome and fun. I have had the privilege to go to both. It is the happiest place on earth, you know, unless you are blind and can't find it because the Braille map is hidden;)

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  14. LOL! I love the title of your blog. You have a new follower, and I'm looking forward to reading more from your A-Z!

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  15. Thanks, Sarah and welcome! My goal , besides pointing out the general stupidity and absurdity of things, is to make you laugh even when you are having the worst of days. I like people to be happy and I will stop and nothing, including self-humiliation (which will be in my "Q" post) to do it:)

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  16. See, now I have to follow you because this post is hilarious.

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    1. Yay! Thank you. Welcome aboard the Crazy Train! (Probably should have used that reference on the last response to you, but I didn't know you had climbed aboard yet.LOL)

      Stay tuned for more posts because I am truly out of my mind.

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  17. I'm not exactly sure a Braille map would work - could you touch something that tells you Winnie the Pooh's Beer Garden is here, and make that correlate to where you are and the path from one to the other with NO visual cues? I'm sure the park must provide some assistance if a blind person comes there - and the Braille map is surely more a listing of what is available to enjoy - then the blind person would be assisted there by the park worker? Or am I being my usual boorish shallow self? Much to think about here!

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  18. I agree. It's weird.

    As such I had to look it up and I think I found the non-weird explanation - Which I know TOTALLY ruins the fun! ;)

    I don't think the braille map is specifically for blind people. I think it's meant more for visually impaired people. The maps have larger type and braille, so the idea is probably that visually impaired people can find the maps, which are near the visitors centers (where disabled people usually check in) or in other random places like yours! And then if they need additional help reading the darned things, there's braille on them as well. I personally don't know anyone who's visually impaired who reads braille. The only people I know who learned braille are totally blind so yes, this would be totally useless to them (So it's still funny to me even with a semi-logical explanation!)

    FYI: There are also audio tours and braille guidebooks (far more useful IMO!) that people can use if they put down a deposit, which they'll get back if they return the stuff the same day (vs bringing it home and selling it on ebay ;) )

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    1. Want to hear the bad thing? My friend just went there and the Braille map isn't there anymore. Apparently they said, "Ahhh screw it! They'll figure it out."

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    2. Lol! - They must have read your blog! :D

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