Judge John Hodgman Episode 210: Judgin' Like It's 1992

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Bailiff Jesse returns to the courtroom! Judge Hodgman rules on the Oxford comma, Hawaiian short pants, and tries not to hurt anyone's "Disney feelings".

We'll be back with more trials next week. Check out evidence from this week's episode below.

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RELATED EVIDENCE

A photo update from the litigants from Queasy Rider! Listen in to hear from Katie and Dallas toward the end of this week's episode.

And an excerpt from a letter from a Disney castmember:

"After your recent podcast discussing Disney and its dual wondrous / grim nature, I thought I would share with you ... what I learned about the [Cinderella] suite [at Disney World]...

To start, I have worked for the Disney company for almost 20 years. I came here as a part of the Disney College Program, which recruits college students from around the country to work as interns for a semester at the resort and theme park properties. Any time you see a Cast Member with a college listed on their name tag, you're looking at a CP. The program offers unspecified "college credit" and CPs must attend a series of business classes in addition to their work experience.

You all live in a small gated community with strict rules about visitation hours, alcohol consumption, etc. Everyone tries very hard to avoid being CAUGHT breaking the rules because they are grounds for immediate termination and expulsion from the property. Honestly, this might be a relief on some level as you are matched up with roommates in a 2 or 3 bedroom apartment, with 2 people per bedroom. I opted for the additional "cultural experience" of living in an apartment with student workers from Epcot - my roommates were French, Italian, and German. To this day I'm not entirely sure what any of their names were, and most of what I learned culturally was how much Europeans enjoy smoking indoors and bringing home ladies.

So that was my introduction to the company... and that brings us to the Castle Suite. One of the great things about the company is that it is filled with people who genuinely love what they are doing and think that the specific thing they are involved with is really cool. As a result, there is a lot of opportunity to have people show you behind the scenes of whatever neat project they are working on.

In 2007, my then-manager arranged for a small group of us to tour the suite, which was created as part of the Year Of A Million Dreams Celebration. Throughout that year, the suite was regularly given away at random to guests in the parks as a special surprise. After signing away their rights to Disney Marketing, the winning family would be assigned a park guide to tour them around for the rest of the day, pointing out interesting details and taking them to the front of lines. At the end of the day, the guests would be allowed to stay in the park for an hour after closing and have it to themselves for a short time. After that, they would retire to the castle suite for the evening, and in the morning would have a breakfast with Cinderella before returning to their everyday lives.

The side of the Castle Suite that I always found a little ominous is best summed up in the form of the suite concierge. To access the suite, you open a nondescript door in the main hallway within the castle. Behind this door is a desk next to an elevator, and at that desk sits the concierge. The desk is manned 24 hours a day while the suite is occupied, and the phone in the Suite dials the desk directly. Ostensibly, this is so that the guests have a concierge at their disposal 24 hours a day for "anything you need". The unspoken part of this arrangement is that the concierge has the code to operate the elevator, because you are NOT ALLOWED TO LEAVE without him. This keeps guests from wandering the park at night for liability reasons and for their own safety, but it still strikes me as a strange and beautiful prison cell which is just waiting for a The Shining situation to develop.

The windows in the suite are beautiful stained glass telling the story of Cinderella. What you cannot tell unless you have been inside is that the windows are small, intricate, and placed a little higher than normal. All of this is so that you cannot effectively see out of them - it keeps you from seeing the cleaning crews getting ready for the next day's guests, and further isolates you from the world you once knew. If that isn't an example of what we do best, I don't know what is."

Comments

Pro Oxford comma!

Oxford comma all the way! Consistent use makes for ease of reading and if you really need to clear something up in a list, go crazy and use a semi-colon.

Stealth Punning

Was that an accidental (but totally brilliant) pun right at the end, about how Sonia "Soda"mayor is fascinated by Moxie?

AP Nano Brew

Consistency, consistency and consistency. Stet