Read Between the Spines, Part II

I put up the first half of this post last week … but keep reading. Because it took way longer to put it together than I thought it would, and you’ll soon see why!

The topic: The bookshelves at Skipper Canteen. The reason it took so long: The book spines are dense with in-jokes, puns and silly gags. In fact, the shelves are so rich with references that I can’t even begin to decipher them all, let alone share them all here. But here’s (the second half of) what Dan and I were able to piece together with our combined Disney knowledge:


The Congo Queen is a book on the shelf and a Disneyland Jungle Cruise Boat.

Native Orange Birds of the Southeastern United States by Dr. Sidd Truss … say his name real quick. Siddtruss … citrus! A wonderful nod to the Florida Citrus Commission’s Orange Bird mascot.

Prof. Boag wrote Songs of the Tiki Bird … in honor of Wally Boag, who voiced Jose in the fabulous feathered musical attraction.

Sherman and Sherman (as in Robert and Richard … the Sherman Brothers!) wrote the music and words to many Disney classics including the words performed by the Crooning Flowers in the Tiki Room.


The Country of Rivers by Grayman. A nod to River Country, the water park of our childhood.

Treasures from the Manor by Henry Mystic … a nod to the main character of Hong Kong Disneyland’s Mystic Manor.


Music to Smile To by Watanabe … this may be a stretch, but I think it may be a reference to Scott Watanabe, who works as a visual development artist for Disney. He received his first screen credit for Tangled.

This one is my favorite damn thing on the shelves. It is the single biggest bit of shade I’ve ever seen on Disney property (well, until I went to TAG, but that’s a story for later this week …). The book: Our Primitive Contemporaries. The author: Murdock … which is to say, Rupert Murdoch. The founder and current executive co-chairman of Fox. SHADE.

This is odd: Man of Mystery. It’s written by (and you can’t see it in the photo, but trust me!) Benjamin Van Beusekom. Who, it turns out, is a real person. An Imagineer who worked on Storybook Circus, Belle’s house, Aulani, Princess Fairytale Hall, Tangled Toilets and Mickey’s Expo Hall. (Maybe he’s not so mysterious afterall!)


Universus Arboribus by B.M. Evans is such a lovely tribute to Morgan “Bill” Evans, the horticulturalist who guided the landscape design of Disney Parks, because the book’s title is Latin for “All The Trees.”

We also have a good laugher here with Spotted Tigers by G. Rowl. Grrrrrrowl!


Funny Drawings by Runco … as in, Chris Runco, a lead concept designer for Imagineering.


Crocodiles of the Nile by Lemoine … which we determined in our last post is a reference to Josef Lemoine

Seeking Knowledge by Mara is another reference to the Eye of Mara from Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Forbidden Eye.


This one’s great! This series of books is titled after the scenes you go through during Tokyo DisneySea’s Indiana Jones Adventure: Temple of the Crystal Skull, and the author of them all? Paco? He’s the owner of Paco’s Temple Tours, the company that takes guests deep into an ancient pyramid discovered by Indiana Jones. Awesome.


The series Tribal Patterns of African Fabrics was written by Armagost & James … a very, very thinly veiled reference to James Armagost, an Imagineer who works on fabrication design.


Tramp Steamers of Africa by Goff is some more love for Harper Goff, who worked on the Jungle Cruise.


On the left, we have a series of books called The Art of Travel Planning by T. Smith, a lovely tribute to Thomas Smith (who runs Disney Parks Social media).

A little further down the line, we have another novel by Shake Spear … and right next to that, we have an actual Shakespeare title. Cute!


The Stars Above Us was penned by Quill, which is a pun all on its own … but gets better when you realize that Peter Quill is the given name of Star Lord (the leader of the band of misfits in Guardians of the Galaxy).

Want to Countdown to fun every night? Prior to 2008, you could ring in the new year every night at Pleasure Island, which was founded by Merriweather Pleasure … who also happened to write the book Global Night Celebrations.


Merryweather Pleasure was also the author of American Prosperity Abroad. Which is slightly ironic, since he disappeared during his 1941 circumnavigation of the Antarctic.

Cruising in the East was written by Vagnini, which I think is a nod toward Steve Vagnini, A Disney Company archivist.


Survival in the Entertainment Jungle is brought to us by Nigel Greenwater, of the Global Broadcasting Service. (He DJs on the Jungle Cruise radio station!)

Let There Be Light: An Illuminating World History > Fox

Writing Legends of the Frontier is Rouse … Cory Rouse, who is the senior R&D Imagineer for WDI.


Puns: Charting Course by Oceaneer and The Green Gorilla by Verde (Spanish for “green”).

Two more nods to Kevin Lively, an Imagineer who has served as creative lead for both the Jungle Cruise and Jingle Cruise at Disneyland and the Magic Kingdom: The Gorilla Book and The Baboon Book.

And Primates as Shipmates by Henry Mystic. Henry is a member of the Society of Explorers and Adventurers and the proprietor of Mystic Manor in Tokyo … and all of this is relevant because he has traveled the world with his pet monkey (Albert) as a companion.

IMG_6191A hilarious series in green: Victoria Falls Married Into The Jungle when she got hitched to Dr. Albert Falls, for whom Schweitzer Falls is named. Their son, Albert Falls, Jr., was Born Into The Jungle. And Junior’s wife, Sneh, was Married To Someone Born In The Jungle. (Double funny because Sneh Falls is a breathtaking waterfall in India.)


The Rare Artifacts series on the left was written by Probus … clearly a nod to WDI set dectorator Steve Probus.

A Manor of Fact by Mystic is a not-so-thinly-veiled reference to Mystic Manor in Tokyo.

A Journey to the Stars by Kimball is a love letter to Ward Kimball, who was one of Walt’s Nine Old Men.

Birds of Song by Tiki Kiki Serbano, who was a character in the 2014 Disneyland interactive game, Adventure Trading Company.


Leaders Throughout History by Professor G. Kalogridis … who is President of WDW.


Silva and Gold … come on! That’s some good pun.


This one’s a little complicated … Hamlet: A Lion’s Tale is an acknowledgement that Disney’s 1994 classic is heavily inspired by Shakespeare’s Hamlet. And, look at that! The author is Shakes Speare!

Hunger of Hippos by Wilson is (I think!) a reference to the dearly departed Warden Wilson from the Kilimanjaro Safari.


An Odd Set of Stories, the series, was written by Morris, as in Tom K. Morris, an Imagineer who is affectionately known for telling long, rambling stories.

The Harambe Chronicles by Wilson is likely another nod to the dear departed Warden.

And that is it!! All of the references I noticed on the bookshelves at Skipper Canteen!

Did any of these make you laugh? Or rekindle some old Disney Parks memories? Tell us what you’re thinking in the comments!