The Great Wolf Lodge – Fangs Optional

Tiki Temple After Rain , originally uploaded by carolsLittleWorld.

The other day Julie, stopped in for a chat. When I asked her if she had any big plans for the weekend, she mumbled something about taking a few days off to go to the “Great Wolf Lodge.” When I asked what pray tell was this mysterious “Great Wolf Lodge,” she replied, “Oh, that’s right. You don’t have any kids.”

With visions of Chevy Chase traveling cross country National Lampoon-style in my head, I decided to do an Internet search to see just what kind of a clown poor Julie would wind up haplessly punching in the face after her inevitable cross country trip of doom to this modern-day “Wally World” come to life. As it turns out, there really is such a place called the “Great Wolf Lodge.” It’s one of those all-inclusive Disney-wannabe family style resorts only, instead of a mouse, this Hell hole features a “wolf” theme, complete with overpriced rooms containing pup tents or “cub houses.” That wasn’t all. No, the entire “resort” had features like an indoor water park (presumably featuring lots of kiddie pools filled with three year old “output” actually “pee pee”) highly priced (and presumably terribly tasting) pizza joints, and something called a “Wizard Lounge” because, as we all know, wizards go oh-so-well with wolves in the forest. I’m guessing here, seeing as Julie was spot on regarding my lack of children, that the wands somehow scare away the snarling wolves with fangs but, like, don’t hold me to that, OK? (Ahem, should you happen to find yourself alone in the forest some day, armed with only a wizard wand and facing off against a giant wolf with snarling fangs, I’m pretty sure you won’t stop long enough to remember this post and hold me to this “wizard” of the woods theory, but, just in case, I don’t really think the “magic” wands actually do anything magical at all. Well, nothing that is, except suck the money right out of your wallet as designed, but you probably knew that already. At least, I hope you did, if you were smart enough to figure out how to breed and all.)

Oh what fresh Hell this place was too. It was so ugly, it looked like a combination prison camp, horrible apartment in the worst part of town, and perhaps a really ugly cheap condominium gone terribly, terribly wrong. Imagine, if you will, all three of those mating and that’s about what said “Great Wolf Lodge” looked like in the shiny brochure of a flashing website. Sure, they had a few water slides and such, but this place was so ugly I’d have to admit that, if the pictures did it any justice at all, why, forget justice, I’d take my chances with high crimes and misdemeanors. Phew! (Instead of chanting “No Justice No Peace!” perhaps the occupants should instead cry out, “Let My People Go!” At least, that’s what I would find myself shouting, should I happen to get stuck in the likes of this dump. And they say brochures make things look nice, huh? Wow! There really is no hope left for this joint.)

I guess one of the better things about being an artist and not having children is that I’m not forced to succumb to the kinds of routine socially-acceptable torture tests these poor parents have to go through on a semi-regular basis. Having to put up with the “Wally Worlds” of the world, having to pay three hundred bucks a night (pup tent optional!) to sleep in some “Great Wolf Lodge” – a place where there aren’t any real wolves and nothing in plain sight was anywhere near “great.” No, I’ve never had the great, ahem, “fortune” to have to go through something like this. Instead, I have a dog. (And what a wonderful dog he is!) That’s the closest I get to children, responsibility and all, and though I hate to admit it, sometimes even he gets annoying, asking to be put out into the yard more often than his required three or four times a day. No, I’d have to say, this “Great Wolf Lodge” is something I’m fairly certain I’m not missing out on. It’s something I’m so happy I never have to visit and it’s something I’m more than tickled about leaving up to the breeding kind.

This November, as we approach the Thanksgiving holiday here in the ‘States, I’m reminded of these type of “adventures” and I’m eternally gratefully that this is a rite of passage in which I do not have to partake. I don’t have to gather up the rug rats and spend time at the in-laws, no. I don’t have to attend the semi-annual “clown fest” over at whatever passes for the currently popular “Wally Worlds” of the fruited plain. Nope, not me. Instead, I get to hunker down, lock myself in a studio, and paint some. And I can take solace in that, really I can for, even if it all goes wrong, should it all go horribly, horribly wrong and I wind up painting something that looks like I lost a great paint ball match-up, I can always rest comfortably knowing I’m not stuck in something called a “Great Wolf Lodge.” Really, I’m ecstatic about that, honestly I am. No “Great Wolf Lodge” in my future, nope, at least not anytime soon. Dodged a bullet on that one, yes I did.

I mean, don’t get me wrong. Should you be of the type who enjoys your rug rats, I honestly hope you have a great time at said “Wally World.” I hope you laugh and have fun and drain what’s left of your wallet and I hope you don’t spend too much time in the “wee wee” pool and maybe even get something semi-acceptable to eat in one of the over-priced “dining areas.” Different strokes for different folks, is what I have to say here. So, go on, gather up you and your spawn and head on over to the “Great Wolf Lodge” It’s calling your name and you know, you just know, that you’re nine year old wants to go, really you do. Don’t forget your magic wands, your swim flippers and you’re pup tents, go on now, go.

Just please don’t be looking for me down by the kiddie “wee wee” pool, OK? Sorry, but my pup tent is up and packed and, this Thanksgiving anyway, I’ll be in the studio should you happen to want to find me.

Until next time…

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