A Day In The Life of Disney
To get pumped up for work, Disney sometimes woke at 5:30 a.m, played five holes of golf, and then skipped ahead to the 18th hole. Breakfast was a simple affair for Disney. He'd typically have toast, eggs, juice, and maybe a sausage. Coming into work around 8 a.m, he'd start the day off by reviewing storyboards or holding conferences in his office.
He spent the morning walking around the studio or checking on WED Enterprises, the theme-park research-and-development team that's now known as Walt Disney Imagineering. He'd typically be back in his office by noon. He drank coffee around lunchtime and reportedly insisted that coffee at Disneyland cost only a dime.
According to his biographer Neil Gabler, Disney thought that "too much food made you think confusedly" and disapproved of employees taking long lunch breaks, so lunch was a light fare or a glass of tomato juice. He did, however, snack while he worked. Disney was known to constantly carry around nuts and crackers in his jacket pockets.
The rest of Disney's afternoon was packed with meetings until 5 p.m. Then, Gabler writes, Disney would make phone calls and sign letters.
Secretary Tommie Wilck would prepare Disney a Scotch Mist drink at the end of the workday. The beverage was "mostly ice," Wilck said, in an interview with The Walt Disney Family Museum. "He may have consumed a lot of liquid but I don’t think he really got much liquor," she said.
Occasionally, Disney wouldn't even make it home for dinner. He would sometimes remain in the office overnight, and often startled employees with late-night check-ins. His office on the third floor of the company's Burbank studio even included a place for him to sleep.