Tuesday, November 14, 2023


All the kids love Randos! They Tweet and TickTock and Insta about Randos. Maybe they even twerk about them (is twerking still a thing?). 

We'll start with this nice photo of a little hut, conveniently located right on the banks of the Rivers of the World. Good schools are nearby! Not to mention Walmart. Closer to us is a brightly-painted outrigger canoe, it's pretty dazzling. I think Ed "Big Daddy" Roth painted this one. I like the detail of the tapa cloth sail, and not a sail with the image of Rat Fink, like Big Daddy originally suggested.

Meanwhile, over in the Indian Village, some nice totem poles in the style of the tribes of the Pacific Northwest glare at us; or maybe they are smiling at us, I admit it's hard to be sure. I've never been certain if these are fiberglass castings, or if they are actually carved artworks. Chime in if you know!



Major : those totems are fiberglass. They are a series of modular segments and can be “stacked”
In different order and when painted can look all as individual pieces. The totems have also been used at Walt Disney World’s Frontierland -and at Fort Wilderness Campground and at Tokyo Disneyland. The CANADA pavilion at Epcot Center used similar Fiberglas totems but several years ago they were replaced with actual carved totems created by actual native Canadian Americans .

JB said...

Not sure, but I think twerking came and went, faster than Walt could eat a hot dog. (I would say "a hot dog munch", but that's a unit of distance, not time.)

The paint job on the canoe looks like it might be a stylized animal of some sort. And it looks like the animal is coughing something up (that yellow thing). Maybe a hairball.
This is quite a nice photo of the hut and canoe; we usually see it all shaded and gloomy. And even then, rarely at all.

I would definitely say that the totem figures are glaring at us. I know a glare when I see one; not a smile amongst them. Another nice photo; sunny, sharply in focus, and colorful. Looks like there are several more totem poles in the background.
I see Crow from MST3K, Bert from Sesame Street, and Gumby (maybe).

Pretty randos today, Major. Thanks.

K. Martinez said...

Nice randos today. I really like the first one.

Love Ed "Big Daddy" Roth and Rat Fink. Straight out of my childhood memories of Southern California rod culture. I believe Rat Fink was created in response to Mickey Mouse's wholesomeness.

Lots of us kids in elementary school used to collect the Ed Roth hot rod bubblegum cards. Great memories

Thanks, Major.

JG said...

That little hut has been under discussion before as a great place to spend a night in the Park. I think it would be fine after hours when the boats stop running. You could take the canoe out and paddle along the Rivers and watch the nocturnal animatronic animals and fight off animatronic mosquitoes.

I’m sure that’s a Big Daddy Roth design, but where is the blown Hemi with straight pipes? Ken, I had a huge collection of those stickers (they were stickers by my day at least).

That’s a great idea about the modular totem pole, Mike. You could rewrite your legend weekly. For anyone interested in the folklore behind the totems, read “The Wolf and the Raven”.


JB, I think one of them is Speed Racer…

Thanks Major, colorful and connected post on the Pacific Rim cultures.


Anonymous said...

Only those of us from SoCal of that era can appreciate Big Daddy and Rat Fink. If only we could have 'souped-up' one the JC boats in similar livery like the outrigger. KS

Anonymous said...

Naw, we had Big Daddy and Rat Fink here in Texas too! I had several of the stickers stuck on my bedroom door (probably NOT with permission from my mom). I still have one card (I can't remember if it's a sticker) of a Mini of all things!

Yep that's def a hopped up racing canoe. Only natives with leather jackets and bad attitudes drove those. Best to admire at a distance.

I was pretty sure the pole was fiberglass. Heck, everything at Disney is fiberglass. Even a couple of CM's I've met...

Thanks, Major1

K. Martinez said...

JG, you are right. They were stickers, not bubblegum cards. My memory isn't as sharp as it used to be.

Anonymous said...

Ken, I found my collection of those stickers recently, I stuck them on binder paper and put in one of those might cardboard report covers.

I should scan them to share. I had most of the first series and all of the second.


Stefano said...

Thanks Major, these pictures release a surge of do-it-yourself ethnographic project energy in me. Curbs and lawns in SoCal are littered with fronds and sturdy branches, so right to work.

Disneyland's huts tended to be made with Canary Island Palm fronds, while Knott's favored the California Fan Palm for its tropical constructions, at Fiesta Village and Jungle Island. The little grass shack seen here could have used castoffs from the Dominguez Palm, keeping things nice and organic.

I love Big Daddy Roth's Angel Fink model kit, a witch at work on a toxic confection. As a tot one Halloween, I was stopped in my tracks by a house display, a full size cutout of the kit box Angel Fink illustration. Looked like the original Snow White's Adventures hag, and may have been inspired by her.

Bu said...

68 Years later, the Jungle Cruise endures...or perhaps 69 years later as it was the first thing to go in. The little hut: yes. I would spend the night there no problem. With a little rowboat: yes. Please. In the world of employee shenanigans I can probably bet that these two things have happened. The hut is probably slightly swampy, but it's the experience that counts. Did I see one of those ill-produced TV specials with scenes shot in this hut? Or is my memory confused? Even when TRE'd, the Jungle Cruise still stands up...bring back skulls and things....kids love that stuff. Two of mine, for one of yours.... Guess you can go over to Pirate Town, where there are hundreds of skulls...and get your fill. Speaking of Totems: it is actually a term I use frequently at work...a name for a freestanding sign in a tall rectangle shape. I'm not a gigantical fan of fiberglass...I get it, but I don't have to like it. Bring down some Canadians and make real ones. They still are cool regardless of fabrication. Brown slurry coat, and a log fence give it all some gravitas. The birch trees on the left, if still there are probably huge now. Reminds me to plant a couple soon before the frost. I think I may have missed my window: perhaps tiny seedlings inside. I love birch trees and Disneyland has some super duper doozy specimens. In Norway, the sheep love the leaves and the humans love to drink birch: Birkensaft or Birkenwasser. Americans have birch beer...which is a unique flavor: not sure if it's globally available, but have a drink when you can: it is unique and super good for you: Birch sap that is...Maple water is also a refreshing alternative to more commercial products. I'm thirsty. Thanks Major!

Major Pepperidge said...

Mike, thanks - I had the feeling that the totems were not wood, although I have at least one photo of a Native American artisan carving a totem pole in the Indian Village. Interesting that the Disneyland versions were made to be modular!

JB, Walt tried twerking a few times, but by then it was not in fashion anymore. You know how it goes. I think you are right about the stylized animal now that you mention it. Maybe one of those giant river eels or catfish? With a hairball of course. I like a good glare, it puts people on edge, which is always amusing.

K. Martinez, like you, I love Ed Roth’s work, especially his amazing impractical, SUPER COOL cars. The Orbitron is one of my favorites, and its story is fascinating. I have a few vintage Ed Roth decals, but that’s about it.

JG, I’m sure that as a kid I probably saw that little hut and fantasized about sneaking into it (HOW? No idea) and waiting until dark so that I could poke around, Unnoticed. Those Big Daddy Roth stickers can go for a lot these days, I’m talking $60 for something that probably cost 50 cents back in the day. Thank you for the link to The Wolf and the Raven, it sounds very interesting!

KS, I love that car culture look so much, the Von Dutch pinstripes, the George Barris flights of fancy; if I knew anything about cars, it would have been a fun thing to get into!

Stu29573, I’m sure that Big Daddy Roth was big in more places than just SoCal, after all, Revell sold plastic models of some of his wilder cars. I wish I had some of those models! If you look closely you can almost make out the chrome exhaust on the canoe.

K. Martinez, oh yeah! The bubblegum cards! I totally forgot about those!

JG, nooooo! You mean your stickers aren’t “NEW MINT”?? You should have only handled them with white gloves in a clean room!

Stefano, I do love the idea of having a nice tropical yard, front and back. Surround the kidney-shaped pool with a little paradise - with a waterfall of course. Gosh, I’m impressed that you can tell what kind of palm fronds were used on the huts. Maybe they really did use some fallen examples from the Dominguez Palm. That Halloween display sounds awesome, I love it when people do specific stuff like that.

Bu, the only thing is that I have heard that they leave the jungle noises playing all night. I don’t know WHY they would do that, but I’ve read it in more than one source. I agree, at least a few employees used that shack for… stuff. I have no idea if a TV commercial was ever shot there. I’m Ok with skulls and shrunken heads, but I guess I am insensitive. It’s all in fun after all, no heads were actual shrinkified. I suppose the obvious advantage of having a fiberglass totem pole is that it would probably withstand the elements for much longer, though of course the real thing is much more impressive. I’m not sure I’ve ever noticed birch trees at Disneyland. Well, maybe in Frontierland? Also, not sure if I’ve ever had birch beer, though I have been aware of it my whole life. Ditto sarsaparilla. Maple water sounds good. I enjoy deep fried pine tar!

K. Martinez said...

JG, I'd love to see your collection of stickers.

Dean Finder said...

I wish I lived in a place where I could build a tiki bar with palm fronds picked up from the curb. Alas, I live in USDA Zone 6, so no local palms.

"Lou and Sue" said...

I LOVE what the imagineers created in that first scene. A beautiful, relaxing, tropical getaway without any cartoon characters, advertising
or distractions. No gift shops anywhere.

I recall my teenage boyfriend (now my husband), had a Rat Fink blacklight poster, with black velvet background, on his bedroom wall.

Thanks, Major.