Thursday, 22 October 2009

A Real Star

My Mikki still won't allow me to tell you (more than I already have) about the cousins and brothers who live with me and her competition about me in Disney parks is continuing. So, I thought today I would post a picture of me not in a Disney park. This is me somewhere near 6925 Hollywood Boulevard, Hollywood, California.

You will notice a few things about this picture.

First, the humans are making me stand on the pavement (sidewalk). I much prefer the pictures I have in the parks where another Disney character holds me up and gives me a cuddle. On the sidewalk I might get dirty - and I might get stolen by a passing tourist (there were lots about). I know the human whose legs are in the picture would claim he was staying close to protect me but some people would say he was just spoiling the composition (couldn't you airbrush him out in "post production"?).

Second, the star is upside down as seen my me so I can't read who is celebrated here. The shot has been set up for the benefit of the audience who will see the pcture. I don't mind: it's just another example of what we stars do for our fans. Oh, and Andrew had been holding me when we found the star so I knew it was Mickey's.

This picture was taken in 2005. We also found stars for Donald Duck, Walt and Roy O Disney (I think Walt has 2), Snow White and the Sherman Brothers. I don't know if the Disneyland one was there yet but if it was we didn't know about it so didn't look for it. We shall have to go back one day. Now, wouldn't it be nice if my character was famous enough to have a star of his own?

Welcome to Hollywood. What's your dream? A real star please.

Monday, 19 October 2009

Good Homes Needed

I hear that there are people out there in cyberland looking for the other Figaros - my brothers and cousins - who live with me. I put one family picture on this Blog but we have an addition to the family since then (he's on the Blog too). In fact, we all got together on the sofa a few days ago and Andrew took a new group portrait but Mikki has banned me from posting it just yet. I will tell you that there is more useful quiz information about "our Figaros" available in cyberspace than that found on my blog!

So here is a picture of me with other Figaros taken in Walt Disney World in 2007. All these "cousins" are of the "Disney's Tote a Toy" type that was in the stores then and was still there when we last visitied in 2008. And yes, you are right: this was another example of my humans teasing me by putting me on a shelf in a store with other toys that had not yet been bought. At least they were quite quick about taking the picture and watched over me carefully so nobody could take me thinking I was for sale. Oh, the things we stars do for a good show!

I am sure these particular toys have found homes with humans by now but you know how it is, if your rescue one toy from the shop another is put in its place. I am sure there are plenty there noa and they all need good homes.

Yes, of course we have one of this design of Figaro in our family (but not one of the ones in the picture). We call him "Fancy Figaro" (or just "Fancy") because of the sparkly glittering gold dots about his fur. They look very striking on the fur but we are not so sure about the more regular spots on his nose. If there is a "gold spot disease" going round, none of the rest of us have caught it back here in England yet.

Talk to you again soon.

Figaro the Toy Cat

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Art if Retiring

Not all the great personalities of Walt Disney World are "characters" in the animated sense. If you were lucky when you visited the Beach Club (or passed through the lobby often enough) you could meet Art. I met him several times - either when we were staying at DVC at Beach Club Villas or "just passing through". This picture was taken in December last year. Art was great fun and really nice to me - but I think he was really nice to everybody. I know lots of our friends have also told us how much they enjoyed meeting him.
Now the Disney Parks Blog reports that Art is to retire. Mickey Mouse never looks any older but even in Walt Disney World humans (apart from Peter Pan) have to grow up.
Disney likes to think of its jobs as acting roles and they call their staff "cast members". However, the best are often those who depart a little from the script and allow their own individuality to make things extra special for the people they meet. I suspect this can take more courage than Disney like to admit (that's just how it is in large corporations). Over the years, we've met a few of these special people. They are definitely in our list of top memorable experiences and I think I should mention more in future posts on my Blog (Neil - first met at Mama Melrose and most recently seen at Tusker House is probably top of the list). Today, however, is Art's day. My humans and I wish him all the joy he brought us and others.

Monday, 12 October 2009

Characters 8 - Woody

A couple of evenings ago, my humans couldn't find anything they wanted to watch on the tv. We have several hundred channels of sattelite tv so you will realise this happens quite a lot of the time. They did what they often do in this situation - turn to the "Kids" section and look up "Disney Cinemagaque". They caught the last quarter hour of "Toy Story 2". After that, they could get out our DVD and watch the whole movie.

So here is a picture of me with the "rooten-tootenest cowboy of all time". I've met him a few times and also Buzz, Jessie and Bullseye. This shot was taken at "Al's Toy Barn" when it was in the Studios but the Round-Up Gang have also been in the Magic Kingdom. Bullseye couldn't hold me so I haven't had a cuddle from him. I don't think I have seen the Prospector in the parks - but would you want a cuddle from "Stinky Pete"?

Sheriff Woody, his friend Buzz and all the others in Andy's room have a lot to answer for when they told the world what we toys get up to when our humans aren't looking. However, they all seemed nice when I have met them in Walt Disney World.

By the way, the next night we didn't need to resort to DVDs or the Kids channels. "Pretty Woman" was on one of the regular sattelite film channels. And the night after that we had the Disney Pixar feature on "The South Bank Show" (a couple of clips from Pinocchio but no kitten).

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

My humans tease me so much

Sometimes, I think my humans are really mean to me. I've had them in the house so long now that I should be accustomed to their jokes and teasing, but once in a while they still get to me.

Every morning, my humans have coffee in bed before they get up. It's worrying enough for their toys that they might spill the coffee but they keep making jokes as well (well, they think they're funny). They have two cups of coffee each and they think it is funny to ask me to go and get the second one for them. Of course, I can do that in a sort of managerial way. I delegate execution (the trip to the kitchen) to Andrew and in the best traditions of managers everywhere I take full credit for everything that goes right and blame him for everything that goes wrong. Well, today, I actually went downstairs with him and presented Mikki with her second cup holding the handle in my paws. What did she do? She complained that I wasn't carrying his cup as well!

Hardly had I done that than they started asking when anyone was having their next bath. Now everyone knows how much Figaro liked his "Bath Night" so I realised we were just starting a "let's tease the toys" session.

Next they talked about the competition Mikki is running on one of the discussion boards with pictures of me. She has been getting a lot more entries than the last time she ran one of these. She's just had a couple of pictures from Disneyland Paris. One of the sad things about Disneyland Paris is that people don't queue (stand in line) for pictures with characters. You just have to push your way in. One of the quiz pictures was from the time Geppetto saw me and he was the one who pushed all the other people aside to get to me and give me a cuddle. Anyway, the humans started to talk about what prize they would give. I'm not going into details but just let me make one thing clear. I love all my fans very much and so do all my brothers and cousins who live in our guest room. But I'm not going to break up the family for you and I'm sure you wouldn't want me to.

I know the humans are only teasing me when they say silly things but sometimes I wonder why I put up with it all. Would anyone like one of them as a quiz prize? Oh yes, I remember now. For the cuddles. Prrrrr.

Thursday, 1 October 2009

Character 7 - Minnie Mouse and a Quiz

I do like having my picture taken with other Disney characters in Walt Disney World. Here you can see me with Minnie Mouse. The humans were with me (you can see Andrew and a bit of Mikki in the picture) but claimed they couldn't see Minnie at the time. I bet they admit they can see her now. And if they thought she wasn't there, who were tney making room for on the bench?

Mikki has been asked to do a little quiz for one of the discussion boards and she has asked me to help so I have let her have some of my pictures with charactes. She is calling the quiz, "Figaro's Frolics". People have to say who the other character is; which film that character appeared in; and which park the photograph was taken in. We want to make some questions easier than others but I'm not allowing her to use any pictures I have used on the Blog. This one would be a bit too easy for who the character is but a bit complicated for the film. I think all the characters Mikki is using in her quiz appeared in animated features. Minnie Mouse appeared in so many shorts films (including several with Figaro). She was in "Who Framed Roger Rabbit?" but I don't think that counts as a "proper" aminated feature. Nor do featurettes like "Mickey's Chistmas Carol" and "Prince and Pauper" or movies made for video like "Three Musketeers". Oh, gosh, it is complicated. Have I given away that "Minnie Mouse" is not the answer to any of the questions?

As for which park this picture was taken in, that isn't the easiest it could be but it isn't that difficult for anyone who knows that Disney imagineers make the benches an important part of their theming. In the Magic Kingdom, you can usually tell by the benches not just which park you are in but which land you are in too. Time was when the colours of the waste bins were just as cleverly done but I fear the bean counters have caused a bit of a retreat on that! This is the Studios.

By the way, my Mikki is now counting down the days until our next visit. Her current projects are working out what car hire we will need and checking out the best flights for our "weekend away" in Bermuda.