I’m trying to reconcile some torn feelings I have. It’s about Disneyland.
There’s a difference between visiting the park once every few years. You do it for friends, family, a significant other, etc. But you aren’t so enthralled with the occasion that you make a habit or fetish of it. You can take it or leave it. You go to be gracious to those who matter to you.
This is how I imagine men, in general, relate to Disneyland. They tolerate the silly flippancy of the place with tired smiles. They eat, get on a few rides, grit their teeth and brave the loud, colorful crowds. They exhale in relief as they leave the park late at night after doing their periodic good deed, realizing that they won’t have to return for a few years. This is what I imagine men think of Disneyland. I like to think of a typical man as having a sense of gravitas which precludes enjoyment of such overpriced, childish folly. Men are dark of spirit and stern of nature. They don’t enjoy suspending rigors of maturity for such immature amusement and playful levity.
I know of several men who love Disneyland.
I guess they are good guys. I don’t know them particularly well and I don’t relish speaking ill of them or calling their motives and natures into question. But I must wonder honestly. Why would any man enjoy Disneyland so much?
I bring this up because I have learned of a man who goes to Disneyland with his girlfriend quite often.
He enjoys it way too much from what I can make of it. In fact, he went this weekend and returned yesterday because they had a promotional free ticket they wanted to use. I joked with the person who relayed the story. I’m not amazed by the money involved in this expensive habit as much as I’m amazed anyone could go to Disneyland so much.
Especially a man.
There is nothing appealing to me about Disneyland. It is games, it is unreality, it is boring. There are so many other practical, useful ways I’d rather spend my time. But I’m a guy. A man makes his time count, and make believe does not count. I totally accept women enjoying Disneyland. Women are children at heart. They are not serious or grave and they worship levity. Women enjoy fantasy and fictional embellishment of a life they see as staid and banal, the very same qualities that make normal men embrace the drudgery of existence.
But I hear about men who love Disneyland.
I don’t get it. Are they immature? How does a man suspend masculinity in order to enjoy such hollow diversion? Does he, in fact, need to suspend masculinity? Is it possible to be a man and enjoy Disneyland? Or, more accurately, a real man. A man of fortitude and backbone and strength? Doesn’t the shrill foolishness of Disneyland disqualify all semblance of manhood? Shall we be leery of men who enjoy Disneyland as much as women?
Has foolishness become a man’s right now? Does a man now reserve the right to think and act like a child in order to be the female equal? Whereas women have become “harder” and “tougher” in order to find equilibrium with men, have men surrendered their strength and moroseness in order to mimic the glib female persona, including the assumption of empty-headed playground mimicry?