For the spring break of my sophomore year of high school, my father, in an attempt at parent-child bonding, offered to take me on a trip. "Madeleine," he said. "You are young and bright. The world is yours to discover. Tell me anywhere you'd like to go in the continental U.S. and we will go there. Want to go to Oxford and see the home of William Faulkner? We're there! Rather drive through a tree in the Redwood Forest? Gas up, baby! We're headed west! Or maybe you want to see our government in action — Washington, D.C. it is! Name a place from sea to shining sea and we'll be on our way — just you, me and our curiosity."
"Disney World," I said, barely turning away from the TV. He has never looked at me the same way since.
My dad made good on his promise. We flew to Orlando, stayed at a Comfort Inn and went to Disney World. We waited in lines, rode the rides and sweated through our clothes. Then, since there are no sidewalks anywhere in Florida, we walked on a highway median back to our hotel, both silently agreeing that A.) Disney World is terrible and B.) we would never try to bond ever again.
Of course, everything has changed now that Disney World Magic Kingdom has decided to start serving alcohol for the first time in its 41-year history. If today you told me that you, kind generous stranger, would be willing to take me anywhere in the U.S. of A, I'd probably give the same answer that I did when I was 16. Why? Because being drunk at the Magic Kingdom sounds downright magical. Why? I'll tell you why.
10. It's a Small World. And you are big enough to destroy it.
The Disney World staff operating It's a Small World (the nightmare ride that takes you on an generalized ethnic journey around the globe) will tell you to stay safely in the boat but your drunk brain will say otherwise. Do yourself a favor and trust your instincts by dismounting and smashing those mechanic broad-faced motherfuckers to pieces. You are the alien sent to destroy their planet and they have no Will Smith to fight back and "make this look good." They have nothing. You are everything. Not a robot soul will survive your ethnic cleanse.
9. Fight a mascot.
Everyone needs to get in a physical altercation with someone wearing an animal costume at some point in their life. On the other side of that coin, no mascot is truly accepted by their mascot peers until they've had a battery thrown at them. Everybody wins and Mickey has been acting passive aggressive toward you all day.
8. Bare yourself.
Do you remember the episode of Full House when the Tanners go to Disney World and Michelle keeps having all this good luck and it makes Stephanie jealous? And then to make it up to her, Michelle invites Stephanie to dress like a princess and ride with her in the parade? Well, there was a part of me, even at 16 years old, even now, who thought that that might really happen to me. It didn't. That's when I realized that life isn't all magic. Shit gets real and opportunities don't fall into your lap like they did with the Tanners.
That's what my sober mind thought, anyway. Had I been drunk, I would have known that magic is real: Take off your clothes, streak through a parade at a children's theme park and — bippity boppity boo — you're a part of something bigger.
7. THAT'S RACIST
Did you know that the story of Brer Rabbit depicted on the Splash Mountain ride has a very racist history? It does, but you wouldn't know because they edited that part out to make themselves look squeaky clean. This is all a part of a revisionist conspiracy that you in your wine haze should not shut up about. SPLASH MOUNTAIN WAS AN INSIDE JOB.
6. I'M RACIST
You're drunk and at Epcot, baby. Being racist is a part of the experience.
5. Go full-on Lost Boy.
Channel the friends of Peter Pan by painting your face with dust and slushy syrup, making yourself a headdress of cotton candy and hiding in the Swiss Family Robinson house. (It's just like Coachella, but with more German tourists.) When your family comes looking for you, tell them that you are no more. You have been reborn in the bottom of a bottle and your new name is Rufio.
4. Buy a tiara.
The costumes in the Disney gift shops are expensive, generally costing in the hundreds, but they're also beautiful. You could never buy one sober, but who hasn't indulged in the occasional drunken purchase? Last time, you bought the For the Love of RJ DVDs, this time you bought a head-to-toe Jasmine costume. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL AND DRUNK AND WORTH IT.
3. Barf in the tea cups.
When you've hit the bottle too hard, why not purge it all out on the tea cups? You'll be clean thanks to centrifugal force and someone else will have a great story about the time they got barfed on at Disney World. Yaaaaay!
2. Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto.
I don't know if I'm the first person to break this to you, but it's unlikely that you will ever kiss Johnny Depp. Your secret fantasy of making sweet violent love to Ichabod Crane will probably never be a reality, but that doesn't mean can never french kiss Robot Johnny Depp on the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. "Ew, but germs," you say. It's that very danger that makes it so sexy.
If Depp's not your style, feel free to visit the Hall of Presidents instead.
1. You must take your place in the Circle of Life.
Yo, Disney's Animal Kingdom is but a fence hop away. You know what's in Disney's Animal Kingdom? Lions. You know who was a lion? THE LION KING and he was dope. (P.S. The lions will kill you, but every good time comes at a cost.)