Monday, October 05, 2009

Ears off to ya, Roy

'Here's your ears' sing a chorus of Mouseketeers to a special guest on Tuesday Guest Star Day (Mickey Mouse Club, circa 1950's). The Mousketeers then bestow upon the VIP a pair of glittery sparkly Mickey Mouse ears. Not standard issue, but pretty wowiezowie. After being crowned with the sparkly ears, that person then became an Honorary Mouseketeer. Nifty.

In the 50's, like most American kids my age, I watched the Mickey Mouse Club on TV every day after school. Wanted a pair of Mouse Ears just like the Mouseketeers wore.
Back then, it took going to Disneyland to secure a pair. But our family never took such vacations. Finances dictated we stay close to home. I don't even recall my parents ever having vacation days from their working class jobs. As a kid, I wasn't empathetic to our lot; rather, resigned - to living out my childhood without a pair of Mickey ears. Brat.

Finally, in 1971, as an adult (married, before kids), my first trip to Disneyland. Once inside the gates - a stop at the nearest hat shop on Main Street. There they were: the Mickey Mouse ears. Lots of 'em. It was as if I suddenly became 8 years old again. The ensuing adrenaline rush assured me that in this magical place, there was a pair of MM ears just for me.

It makes for a better story to say that I got a Mickey Mouse ears hat on that first trip to Disneyland. In reality, it might have been on a subsequent visit...
Eventually, it happened. A pair of Mickey ears, in classic black - with my name embroidered on the back in yellow thread. I felt like an Honorary Mouseketeer.

image from

Roy Williams is credited with the creation of the world-famous Mickey ears-hat. It seems that Williams was inspired by this early Mickey Mouse cartoon in which Mickey tips the top of his head (his ears) to Minnie @ 3:10:

Williams' bio reads that in 1930, he was an artist and storyman for the Disney Studios. Those of us who grew up watching the original Mickey Mouse Club show may remember him as the 'big Mouseketeer' or 'Mooseketeer'. AKA 'Uncle Roy'.

Roy Williams' artful contributions to our favourite classic Disney stories deserves kudos. Then there is this business about the MM ears hat.
For his part in Disney history, we thank Uncle Roy for the memories.

Let us tip our Mouse ears to him.

1 comment:

The Art of Photography said...

those mouse ear hats were available in brother and I got one. I don't know where from...but we got one. I have a picture of me wearing it to visit santa in 1957 to prove it!