I took my daughter to Disney World not so long after it opened. The central Florida sun beat down savagely on her fair English skin and she came to resemble an unhappy tomato. For the remainder of our stay we moved in shadow as much as possible. Boat rides through cool tunnels were particularly esteemed and thus it was that we got stuck in the Small, Small World tour. Some temporary glitch in the usually perfect Disney-system becalmed us amid tiny Audio-Animatronic dolls, all singing "It's a Small, Small World" in hideously piping voices.
began to panic and under the reproving gaze of the old people with which our barge was filled I seized Daisy and swung my legs over the side, intending to wade toward the small, small circle of light at the end of the tunnel. Before I could get mangled by the track machinery, the barge started moving and soon we were safely a docked. I got a Disney-style telling off all the same from I dapper attendant in white. In Disney World you soon become ashamed of doing bad things, like dropping candy wrappers or using profane language, in front of good people. A sort of gooey superego takes over, and you proceed slowly through the Magic Kingdom, purged of all the usual emotions of lust, impatience, and hatred of mankind.
A large portion of this trancelike state is induced by the renowned Disney suspension of the normal order of things: a cleanliness unrivaled since Eden, famously achieved through nocturnal steam-cleaning of the streets; freedom from sin in whatever combinations of sex and violence. For all the old people who flocked to the Magic Kingdom, it is above all Safe, Safe World, with Mickey and Donald and an inconspicuous but watchful Disney security force guarding the outer approaches to a Main Street forever decent.