The always-excellent Passport to Dreams blog (devoted to design analysis and critique of Disney parks) looks at the strange case of the Contemporary Hotel's out-of-place second floor mezzanine, a large and echoing emptiness that was once part of a busy convention space.
Today the Level of the Americas mostly houses a reception area for the California Grill restaurant which supplanted the original Top of the World supper club in 1994. Neo-modern furnishings scatter the handsome wide hallways randomly, sometimes housing guests, slumped in couches like vagrants waiting to be evicted from a train station in a snowstorm. Other times, guests wander aimlessly down those lifeless wide hallways, looking furtively for someone or something that's never there. Since the addition of the new Fantasia-themed convention center wing in the early 1990s designed by Michael Graves, those original Contemporary meeting rooms and banquet spaces seem desolate, remote, and unloved. Very few places in all of Walt Disney World exude the same sense of not belonging as the Level of the Americas. "Is this supposed to be here??"
Snapshot: Mysteries of the Second Floor
It wasn't always this way. Convention going was a big part of Walt Disney World's bottom line all through the 70's and 80's, and continues to be so today. All through the first twenty years of the resort, the absolute top spot for Conventions in all of Walt Disney World was the Contemporary, and the cutting-edge Ballroom of the Americas featured a hydraulic stage which could raise or lower and even closed-circuit television linking one ballroom to another. All drenched in 1970's earth tones, full of hustle and bustle and strange geometric patterns. Because nothing says "here and now" like geometry.
Jonathan Coulton is known for a myriad of distinct accomplishments. The tech professional-turned-musician once conducted a Thing a Week experiment, in which he recorded and published a new song every Friday for a year, produced a cover of Sir Mix-a-Lot’s “Baby Got Back” infamously adopted by the Fox series Glee, regularly contributes to the NPR quiz show “Ask Me Another” as its very own one-man band, and runs his own fan cruise aptly called the JoCo Cruise.
I use this rocker garlic crusher several times a week. To use it, you just put a peeled clove of garlic under the crusher and rock the crusher over it a few times. It will smash the garlic through the holes, which you can then add to your food or skillet. When you are done, […]
Archilogic made this interactive 3D model of the Scranton branch of Dunder Mifflin from The Office. You can scan over the entire space under “floor plan view,” starting off with Pam’s desk and the office of Michael Scott. Then head past the galley kitchen and men’s and women’s bathrooms. You can zoom in and get […]
When you can’t wait for the world’s longest meeting to end, the mindless leg bouncing makes your boredom obvious and just annoys everybody else. Everyone knows the TPS reports need the damn cover sheet, but some sadistic colleague keeps forgetting, probably on purpose just to eat into your lunch hour. Enough is enough!While serving a […]
What could be more fun than a slingshot that shoots tiny airplanes? A slingshot that shoots tiny glowing airplanes of course! These toy planes are outfitted with ultra-bright LEDs, so you can fly all night without losing them in the trees.Whether you are a regular-sized child, or an overgrown adult one, these light-up flyers offer […]
You know the drill. You go to the dentist and they ask you how often you floss. You lie through your teeth and say, “every day!” (Bonus points if you have some cilantro or chives stuck in your gums from lunch). You don’t want to keep up the charade any longer, but rubbing that tiny strand […]