A few weeks after my unwelcome encounter with the rat in our garage, I received an email inviting me to attend the passholder “squeak peek” of Ratatouille, the new ride in the France pavilion in EPCOT. For some reason, this seemed too good an opportunity for me to miss. Never mind that I live in terror of rat-like tails. Never mind that I had just paid vast quantities of money to rat-proof my home. Never mind that I cannot even watch a movie with rats in it without covering my eyes and cringing. I was not going to miss this very special opportunity to experience Ratatouille before the general public. I love being special. Surely, after facing my fear of an actual rat (well, kind of… the closest I got to the said ex-rat was texting a picture of its lifeless body to the critter control guy), I could sit through a ride depicting a cute cartoon rodent.
Or not. Here’s the thing. I knew the ride was based on a rat. However, I did not expect quite so many rats. I also did not anticipate that, as part of the ride “story,” the rider is supposed to be a rat. We rode in a little plastic rat vehicle through the various vignettes of the ride. Because we were supposed to be rats, the veritable armada of rats on the screens were HUGE. It was terrifying. Everywhere I looked, I was surrounded by buck-toothed, mangy-looking giant rats. Maybe to the average rational person, they were somehow cute. Truthfully, I could not opine on what reaction normal people might have had. I was too busy keeping my eyes closed and cowering against Max to take in the nuances of what I will now always refer to as the “rat ride.” At one point, I even screamed involuntarily,
In retrospect, I could give the imagineers points for the premise and execution of the ride. There were too many rats, but, apart from that, the ride was clever and well-produced. The ride vehicle was innovative. I get all kinds of feels from creativity and the rat ride was certainly creative. Unfortunately, what it created within me was horror.
So, let’s review what I learned from my Ratatouille experience:
Rats are not cute.
One rat is too many rats.
Rats do not belong in a kitchen.
I can manage Mickey Mouse and Cheese, the mouse from the Tinker Bell movies, but Ratatouille is pushing my luck beyond wisdom.
“Special” does not necessarily mean “good.”
Sometimes, it is important to overcome your fears; sometimes it is important to just avoid the rats!
What amusement park ride do you avoid and why? Please share your perspective by leaving a comment. In the alternative, you can email me at email@example.com.
Have a magical day!