November 29, 2012
So, meanwhile, the princess is in the background posing, and I'm beginning to realize the utter absurdity of the conversation that's keeping me from her. I said, "Look, let's say I'm not with The Rhino Times – let's say I'm not with the media at all. Is there some law against taking pictures in a public park at a public event, orchestrated by Disney specifically so that people can come out and take pictures? Because, if there is …" I said, motioning over to the hundreds of people, many happily snapping away at the princess and the kids, "well, if there is, then I think you have quite a security breach on your hands."
Yost Column, Dec. 8, 2011, "Disney Strip Searches Yost Over Cinderella"
I had been putting off getting some new socks for some time so, just after midnight Thanksgiving night, I decided I would run up to Wal-Mart, because I figured that would be a good time to go because no one would be there – especially since, you know, it was midnight on Thanksgiving.
Apparently, however, Wal-Mart was running some sort of special that night, because it wasn't exactly the quick in and out shopping experience I'd hoped for. In fact, it took me eight hours to buy the socks – but I have to say that I got a really good deal on them.
Anyway, that whole experience took a lot more time than I'd planned for, so let's get right to it …
Speaking of specials, I was driving around the other day listening to the radio in my car, and a Kohl's commercial came on, announcing a new promotion that chain store is offering.
The commercial said that, as part of a holiday special, every day, each Kohl's store would pick one shopper and, if you were the lucky shopper that day, after you made your purchase they would pay the entire total on your receipt – no matter how much stuff you had just bought.
Here's the thing about that commercial that made me go, Huh?
At the end of the commercial, when the guy was stating all the rules and disclaimers, it said, "No purchase required."
And I thought to myself: Uh, no purchase required? I think in this case a purchase actually is required.
Who would have guessed that the head of the CIA didn't know that Google mail was not a secure form of communication?
How does the head of the CIA not know that? These are the same people who have been spying on us for years. And how have they been spying on us? By tapping our phones and reading our G-mail.
Since when does the head of the CIA not know that – did it never come up in a meeting or anything?
So now I feel a need to make something clear to our country's military and espionage leaders: Just so you know, if you are like a four-star general, or a top secret US operative in the spy world, don't post any national security secrets on your mistress's Facebook wall.
It really disturbs me that I even feel a need to tell you that, but trust me, if you were thinking about doing that, your mistress's Facebook wall is no place to post highly classified government secrets.
If the information for your mistress is top secret, please use your head and send it to her in a text message instead.
I went to the Verizon store recently to get a new iPhone 5, but they were all out – I guess because the phones are so popular. They said that, though they were out of the iPhone 5, it was my lucky day because they did have something in stock that was very similar. In fact, they told me, it was "every bit as good as the iPhone 5" – and they said they could offer me a deal on it.
Here's a picture of my new phone…
I'm not really sure what operating system my new phone is using, but it does have a dedicated redial button – something you won't find on even the top of the line iPhones. Though I have to say, I can't really figure out how to work the camera.
Now, recently, I went to the Winterfest event – the ceremony that marks the opening of the ice skating rink in downtown Greensboro – and I was taking pictures for The Rhino, and something happened that made me feel really bad.
At the event, there were people ice skating with black shirts that said "Disney on Ice" on them, and there were other Disney on Ice people with similar shirts and jackets.
Also at the Winterfest opening this year, there was a mother and a cute little girl – maybe 4 years old – and I asked the mother if I could take a picture of the two of them for the newspaper. The mother said sure, but she told me to wait just one moment.
OK, now, at this point in the story, I have to go back to something that happened at the same event last year – it was something I wrote about a year ago. Then I'll get back to the mother and the little girl.
So, last December, I was at the Winterfest opening celebration and the star attraction is the stunning Cinderella in her jeweled tiara and long beautiful blue gown. I had to take pictures of her that we were going to use on the front page of the paper.
I was taking one picture after another as the children came up to meet Cinderella and was photographed with her by their parents.
And Disney on Ice Security stopped me and asked me to step off to the side.
The security guy, who was one of several guarding the princess, said to me: "Sir, would you please step over here with me."
I was highly annoyed, but despite that, I stepped out of the crowd and asked what he needed.
"Sir," he asked, "are you with the media?"
"Yes, I'm with the media," I said.
"Who are you with?" he asked.
"I'm with The Rhinoceros Times; OK?" I said, "Now, I need to get back to taking pictures."
"Where are your press credentials?" he asked sternly.
"I don't have them with me," I said.
"But you say you're with The Rhino Times?"
"Yes," I said, getting irritated. "I'm with The Rhino Times."
"Well," he said accusingly, "we've worked with The Rhinoceros Times before and they always have press credentials."
To me the whole thing was ridiculous, because, as I told him at that time, I, or anyone else, certainly don't need a media pass to take pictures at a public event on public property in downtown Greensboro where everyone is taking pictures like crazy.
And when I pointed that out to this guy, here's what he said to me: "Sir, Disney on Ice Security noticed that you were taking pictures of the princess with every child."
And I was thinking: Right, and the reason I'm doing that, of course, is so that I can see what kind of price the child will bring on the Russian black market before I kidnap and sell them.
Anyway, trust me when I say everything went downhill from there.
To make a long story short: Clearly my presence at the Winterfest opening last year didn't make Cinderella feel very comfortable, and, while I didn't get arrested or anything despite the commotion that I inadvertently caused, I couldn't help but notice as I walked around this year at the opening of the skating rink, that Disney on Ice skaters were there, as were other Disney on Ice staff – however, this year, Cinderella was nowhere to be found.
You know, there were the Carolina Hurricane storm ladies, and the Disney on Ice skaters, and News 2 and everything that was there for the opening last year – except no Cinderella....continued on page 2