BACKGROUND: Elvis Vs JXL "A Little Less Conversation"
The last time I went to Disneyland was on December 30th, 2001. That wasn't too long ago but it seems like a completely different lifetime. And it pretty much was, too. I was still living in Phoenix at the time, although I was just two months away from moving to Sacramento. That was a huge move for me. I lived in Arizona for twenty-five years. That's a huge time for one person to live in one place. I still miss it, although I think I've finally adapted to being in California. It's just the little things now. They don't have Peter Piper Pizza in Sacramento. I miss Wallace and Ladmo. And when people complain about 90-degree heat in Sac, I just laugh in their faces.
I had successfully beaten a severe but quiet bout with suicide after 9/11, like I think most of us over here did. It was such a strange time. I think that all americans felt like somehow there was some invisible wall seperating us and the rest of the world, that when we heard about sixty people dying in a terrorist attack in Ireland or somewhere else, that something that horrible could never happen here. Once the world trade centers went down, everyone in the world became depressed, sat on the couch glued to CNN, and looked over their shoulders constantly. In my case, it was less shoulder-glancing and more hardcore drinking, but everyone delt with it in their own way. 'Round about Christmas, when we decided to plan a road trip to Disneyland, I had just started to feel better, although the drinking was still there.
Five of us went to Disneyland, me, my girlfriend at the time who will remain nameless(who would often tell me that I had a drinking problem while driving A-A-A-A-AND smoking pot, making her one of America's greatest hypocrites of all time), her sister, her brother, and random friend. We drove there, a hardcore, non-stop drive from Phoenix to Disneyland. Everyone in that family drives like they're on crack, so with my girlfriend's brother at the wheel, we got there in some time frame that is almost physically impossible. But we did it.
It's strange how much Disneyland can change in just a few years. I hadn't been there since I was dating Sarah, this incredibly cute woman who decided to go to college, have sex with two other men, then become a lesbian. That was about three years before. Suddenly the parking lot is being turned into another park and there's these Fastpass tickets, so now I'm waiting in line to get a ticket to be able to wait in another line smaller than the waiting in line line. I remember being really confused. It was Disneyland but it was changing and I didn't like that. It was a Disneyland I wasn't sure about anymore.
Plus, what with my girlfriend being one of the world's biggest potheads, halfway through the day we exited the park and walked back to the parking lot. I was so pissed off. How dare this woman tell ME that I have a drinking problem? I mean, I probably DID have one, but I refuse to be told that by a mindless little pothead. So we walked back to the parking lot and I was forced to look after my girlfriend's little sister at the tram station while her and her brother and random friend went into their car and smoked a bowl.
That fucking bitch.
Now, there's two things that I secretly geek out about. Hardly anyone knows about this. Those two things are A) certain musicals that will remain nameless, and B) Disneyland. I absolutely love Disneyland. I spend hours sometimes learning all those teeny, tiny little useless facts, the trivia bits of information that nobody really needs to know. My eyes get wider than a manga character at Disneyland. It means the world to me. And now I'm forced to stop being at Disneyland because these redneck potheads want to smoke out? And she has the balls to say that I had a drinking problem? I remember being so upset that I wanted to cry, right there in the tram station, right there in front of her little sister.
That soured Disneyland for me for a very long time. The mix of the changing park and the hypocritical pothead woman just ruined the idea of doing a roadtrip to Disneyland. It just didn't seem that special anymore.
Now, just over three years after that, I'm living in California and I'm about to do a road trip, taking my daughter and my new wife to Disneyland. And I know that it's a Disneyland that I don't really know anymore, so I'm a bit skeptical, but I'm feeling good about it. I really am. My ipod is going to help, chocked full of Magnetic Fields and Elvis Costello and the Beatles and Sublime and the White Stripes and Groovie Ghoulies and Armor for Sleep and ...And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead. Listening to that on the road will cool my nerves, I think. I feel nervous, like I used to feel back when I was acting all the time, that feeling you get backstage when you're about to go on and you know your parents are in the audience. I know it's a silly way to feel about a roadtrip but that's how I feel.
Plus, there's no bitchy pothead coming with me on this trip. Instead, it's the two coolest women on the planet. It's my daughter and my new wife. Wow. I have a wife. That just sounds amazing. Sometimes Natasha and I look into each other's eyes and just say it over and over again. I'm her husband. I am her husband and she is my wife. That's incredible. It's amazing but it also feels right. Nothing has ever felt so right in my entire life.
These past few days have been amazing. I can't believe I'm married and at the same time I can't believe that I ever dated anyone who wasn't her. I can't believe I ever had a life without her. I can't believe I was ever so stupid as to ever say "I love you" to anyone who wasn't Natasha. And now she's Natasha Galindo. And now we're married, not just Natasha and I but also her daughter, Emerald. I had sort of emotionally adopted her as my daughter but now it's more official. Now we're a family. Now we're together. And now we're going on a trip that's half summer vacation, half family honeymoon.
I'm nervous. I know I shouldn't be but I am. But it also feels right. It feels exciting. And I have never felt this happy in my entire life. I've been saying that a lot. That makes me ever happier.