Imagine, if you will, a home. A beautiful home. A beautiful home with unblemished Tasmanian oak floorboards, smear-free, transparent windows, and nice things. Lots of nice things.
Now imagine inviting 30 children under the age of 7 into this beautiful home and telling them to run free! Run wild! Mi casa es tu casa! No, no, leave your boots on young man, it’s only mud! What’s that dear? You’re bleeding all over the rug? Never mind dear, never mind, it’s only a vibrant human fluid pouring from an open wound!
YES, THAT’S RIGHT – I ACCIDENTALLY INVITED 30 SMALL CHILDREN INTO MY LOVELY HOME AND LIVED TO REGRET IT.
I say “accidentally” because I mean “accidentally”. The party was supposed to be at the park. The parties are ALWAYS at the park. The sun always shines on my children’s birthday parties, even when they fall in the middle of winter. We’re the Shearons! The sunshine Shearons!
On this occasion – Alice’s 6thbirthday celebration – the sun did not shine. The sun did not shine for the week leading up to Alice’s birthday and the week following Alice’s birthday. It pissed down. It rained relentlessly and without reprieve, to the point that I had to send out a message redirecting all children from the park and towards my home. And obviously, because I’m a social leper who doesn’t know the majority of parents, the message would not get to everyone, and some parents would be left in the park, in the rain, sheltering their small children from the storm and wondering where the fucking pinata was.
So yes, it was a fucking disaster, which is why it’s taken me two weeks to write about Alice’s 6thbirthday party. It’s taken two weeks for my left eye to stop twitching. It’s taken two weeks for Paul to stop rocking in a corner, muttering expletives about pass the parcel.
The problem was, of course, the children. The children were like wild animals with nut allergies. Take their parents out of the equation and add wanton handfuls of skittles and you’re left with a scene out of Apocalypse Now, if Apocalypse Now had a trampoline and conjunctivitis.
Fuck me, it was chaos. Little girls kept following Paul around, telling him they had a sore finger. Paul didn’t give a shit about little girls and their sore fingers, asking them to go and find me instead, which they couldn’t, because I was hiding in the wardrobe. There were kids everywhere. I found one under a table, banging on Paul’s guitar like a tribal bongo and saying, over and over, THIS IS THE BEST DAY OF MY LIFE. He had a wild look in his eyes and he frightened me. Musical statues was a fucking war zone. YOU try telling a small child high on marshmallows that he’s out. YOU try that.
And dear reader, if I had my time again, I would not introduce a pinata into the party mix. Dear reader, I would not.
My message to you is this: inviting 30 small children into your home is never a good idea – not unless you want to find abandoned six-year-olds huddled behind your sofa days later, gnawing on the remnants of a Krispy Kreme and insisting that they bobbed first.