My latest Patch article follows on my last one about my (so far) half-assed job search. Have you heard of these jackass interview questions that are like the riddle of the Sphinx? Have you ever been asked any weirdo questions in an interview? Do I really have to be prepared to answer questions like these?
The whole thing makes me so tired I think I'm going to take a nice long break from barely looking for a job...
Somehow I managed to make it through nearly 8 years of parenthood without having ever crossing the threshold of a Chuck E. Cheese. But that all changed last weekend. Audrey was invited to the birthday party of one of the boys in her self-contained classroom at this notorious establishment.
Everybody has to experience it at least once, right? I just crossed my fingers and prayed that all we would come away with was blog material, and not, say, an antibiotic-resistant strain of dysentery.
The one handy part about being a total pessimist/cynic/mortal dreader of everyone and everything, is that things are sometimes not as bad as you thought they'd be. And this was definitely true for Chuck E. Cheese. I actually didn't think it was that bad.
It was, of course, the definition of sensory overload, and it took Audrey a while to acclimate to the combination of hordes of noisy kids, flashing lights and noises from the arcade games, an animatronic band of costumed animals, blaring music and video screens, and the sweet, sweet smell of all that pizza and cheesy bread.
Plus, she was seeing classmates outside of their usual context, which always freaks her out. But besides Audrey and Chris, the birthday boy, there was just the famous Jackin attendance. So it was a small party. According to Chris' mom, Chris said that Audrey is his girlfriend. Given that she's the only girl in a class with 9 boys, I think she's everyone's girlfriend.
Party of three
I couldn't get Audrey to stay in one place for long enough to play many of the arcade games. She did like one that sketched your portrait....
The Three Faces of Cheese
I asked her what she was so worried about in the picture on the right, and she thought that was hilarious. Now she keeps looking at it and saying, "What was she so worried about?" while laughing her head off.
Everyone told me that kids tend to be mortally afraid of The Master of Ceremonies when he finally makes his appearance. My nieces, who are now 16 and 20, have still not gotten over their fear of costumed creatures. I guess that's one way to ensure your kid doesn't become one of those weirdo plushy fetishists. There's little that doesn't cause Audrey anxiety, but somehow she was not afraid of Chuck E.
Future plushy ^^
And of course it's not a party until Audrey smells your cake...
When it was finally time for the big finale and singing "Happy Birthday", I think the birthday boy reflected the feelings of many of past, present, and future birthday honorees...