Walt and Me
Disneyland -
Building and
Almost Bankrupt
Every day Walt looked around the various parts of Disneyland being
built. He had a go-between him(and Roy, his brother) and the
contractors, but Walt wanted to see for himself.  One day I heard
this man receive some bad news, that construction of one ride was
held up because of lack of parts and that Disneyland may not open
on schedule- after that the man said to Walt that everything was
going to schedule, an obvious lie, to me. I told Walt what I heard.
Walt asked that contractor what he had said to the man. Walt fired
him, saying to me afterward that he must be able to trust every
employee.
One piece of history before Walt Disney and me- I looked at a friend
of the family's architect magazines and textbooks and drawings
alot. Nothing else to do that was interesting. So, I had dozens of
comments to Walt about some Disneyland structures. Mostly
bracing and weaknesses in designing. Some what I considered
substandard materials that would not last long and should be
replaced now instead of when Disneyland would be open.
The colors of the paint to be used were dull. Very dull. At home I
tried some liquid aluminum with old leftover paint- great. And, at
home, aluminum confetti with old leftover paint- even better. I
showed the man in charge of painting at Disneyland what I had
done- a teardrop from each of his eyes. He showed Walt. I guess
Walt liked it- the man who signed the checks tried to give me a
check for $3000. I refused, saying I was only trying to help Walt. The
next time I saw Walt, Walt offered me a check for $4000. I refused,
saying I do not accept money for trying to help somebody else.
One day Walt said that if he did not make the next payment to the
bank he and Roy would lose everything. I kept quiet about an idea I
had. I went to a phone and called a friend of mine- George Allan
Hancock and explained Walt and Roy's situation. Within 24 hours
the payment due was made. And then the next payment when that
one was due.  George said to me that he could not come up with any
more cash. But, Disneyland was safe, for the moment.
Next page for BIG danger for Disneyland, and ME!