This week’s Disney geek, Tom Robins, spent his honeymoon at Disneyland with his wife, Marie, more than 20 years ago. Since then, they have raised a 15-year-old daughter, Chloe, who dreams of being a Disney artist someday, and the family has two beagle dogs, Roscoe and DeSoto, named after the villains from Oliver and Company. Disney inspires a lot of what this family does. But to understand how this Disney geek first got his Disney itch, you have to start with comic books. The D23 Charter Member, Walt Disney Classics Collection Member, Magic Kingdom Club Member, Disney Vacation Club Member, and Disneyland Premium Annual Passholder, from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, explains how a Duck Tales comic book launched his Disney geek lifestyle.
Just His Duck
“I never started really being a big Disney geek until I bought my first Disney comic book—Duck Tales. Then, I was hooked. I have a huge collection of 2,000 videos, more than 1,500 DVDs, comics, the complete collection of Walt Disney Classics Collection statues, books, cars, records, and clothes.”
“My favorite Disney character is Uncle Scrooge because out of all the Disney characters, he has had the most exciting and cool adventures either in his comic book series or his Duck Tales adventures. And he knows how to save a buck or two. I have a couple of Uncle Scrooge T-shirts, but I don’t usually wear them as I don’t want to wear them out.”
Wears his Disney on his Sleeve
“I have more than 100 shirts, and there is not a day that goes by that I do not wear a Disney shirt, even under my work clothes. I have a Disney shirt on, I guess it’s just something I like to wear, and I love the reaction from people, especially when the kids say, ‘Look Mom! He has Mater on his shirt.’ Whenever we make our yearly trip to Disneyland or go to the Disney Store or any Disney event, I end up getting at least two or three shirts.”
“Our favorite Disney memory is our daughter’s first trip to Disneyland. We asked her what she wanted for her seventh birthday, and she said she wanted to go on a plane and we asked her where she wanted to go and she said, ‘Calgary.’ So we told her, “Okay we can do that.” When the time came, we went to the airport and she thought she was going to Calgary. When we were sitting waiting, we gave her the birthday card and we told her to read it and she was so excited when she read in her card that she was going to Disneyland for her birthday.”
Every Geek Must Have a “Disney Room”
“I get my Disney fix at home. On the weekends, I get up very early and I make some coffee and go into the Disney basement. I walk around my miniature Disneyland Main Street, U.S.A. about 10 to 15 times, and then I either look at a book or put on a movie. It’s all very relaxing.
Main Street, U.S.A., Canada
“My favorite souvenir is my miniature Disneyland Main Street collection by Robert Olszewski. Every time we look at it, we turn off the room lights, turn on the lights on the table, and it’s like we are right there, listening to the ’50s ragtime music, smelling the popcorn, watching the Main Street Electrical Parade coming down Main Street. I can’t wait till our renovation is done because I’m going to build the new platform so big it will be amazing.”
Wired for Magic
“About 17 years ago, we heard that we were going to get our first Disney Store in the city, which was great for us Disney people. Then I found out the company I was working for got the contract to do the electrical work in the store. I begged my boss that I had to be the electrician to do the job, and he said he couldn’t think of anybody else to do it. That was awesome, helping to build the first Disney Store in my hometown. I took lots of picture before the store was opened, I was able to get a piece of the carpet, and I still have a complete set of original blueprints of the store. And to this day, most of the employees know who I am and what I did there.”
By D23′s Billy Stanek