I have to say, kid’s birthday parties are a whole lot cooler today than they were when I was a kid. Last Saturday we took Annie to her cousin Spencer’s eighth birthday party at this place called Sky High Sports, and the chubby little eight-year-old I once was would have lost his mind if he could’ve seen the place. Basically, it’s a gigantic warehouse where the floors (and even the walls) are made of trampolines!
As we made our way to the room Spencer’s party was in we passed another feature of this place… a giant foam pit that ANYONE can jump into! I didn’t get a chance to realize my lifelong dream on Saturday, but you can bet I’ll be going back to get my foam pit on. (It’s best not to think too long on the phrase “get my foam pit on.”)
Annie was immediately intrigued by the place – not to mention the sight of all the kids bouncing around like kangaroos – and made a beeline for her cousin, Michaela. Together they ran onto the trampolines and jumped around like crazy.
The jumping at this place was so infectious, in fact, that after a few minutes I noticed Heather had inched onto the floor and started to bounce ever so slightly.
“Hey!” I shouted at her. “You’re pregnant!”
“I’m not even getting off the ground!” she protested.
I sent Heather enough side eye that she soon retreated to the safety of the table area. This meant that I was in charge of making sure that Annie and Michaela didn’t get clobbered by any of the many hyper, hopped-up-on-sugar eight-year-olds.
This job was pretty uneventful until the birthday boy, Spencer, tossed one of the foam balls they have in the room at me. I caught it and tossed it back, and soon we had a game of Dodge-ball going. What’s that you say? You don’t think this exactly sounds like the best way to keep the girls safe? Well, you’re probably right. Oops. And it only got worse. Soon all of Spencer’s pals got it in their minds that it was open season on the tall guy and hurled balls at me.
In hindsight I probably should have been mature and said something like, “Now, now, children. Settle down.” But instead I went a little Billy Madison on them. This, as you can imagine, only riled the kids up even more. Soon even the daintiest little girls at the party were tossing balls at me and screaming playground insults. I even had one little nut run up and start punching me!
As all of this was going on I noticed Heather in the table area just shaking her head at me. (I should mention in my defense, your honor, that these balls were light as snow.) Luckily, it was soon time for cake and I was able to escape the awkward situation.
All in all it was a very fun birthday, and a definite improvement on the parties from my youth (when we got together to play soccer in the backyard and watch Star Wars on VHS). Annie better hope the parties her friends throw in the future aren’t as fun as Spencer’s or her old man will be there, embarrassing her by throwing balls at the boys in her class.