Saturday, April 29, 2006

A Chuck E. Cheese Birthday

I took “Calvin” to a birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese earlier this week. He and the other kids were having fun running around, playing games, and eating pizza. Until that big mouse arrived. What is it about all the places that little kids are supposed to go to have fun that have these giant rodents and other creatures running around that terrify most kids?

Calvin dove under the table. Birthday Boy ran away. Mom dragged him back but he cowered against her leg, crying. The only one who enjoyed it was Birthday Boy’s older sister. She was dancing and smiling better than Chuck E. and his “handler”.

Both Chuck E. and his handler went rather unenthusiastically through their dance routine, “If You’re Happy and You Know It”. Believe me, they didn’t know it. The handler never once smiled. Chuck E. can’t dance on the beat to save his cheese. It wasn’t until he threw out a handful of tickets that the kids came out of hiding. My Calvin knows what those tickets are. The video games spit them out and you can turn them in at the counter for candy. If Mom lets you.

Do any kids actually like Chuck E.? Really, he’s pretty scary. A rat bigger than dad with a big nose and some pretty sharp teeth. I think he’d incite a few nightmares. All and all, I might have been the only one amused.

The kids like being at Chuck E. Cheese. They just don't like him. So have the birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese. Just don't invite the mouse.


Jenny said...

Chuck E. can stand in line with the giant Easter Bunny. I took the kids to see him at the mall for pictures one year--I was pregnant with Meg so that's why she wasn't in the pic--and Ian was terrified. He finally agreed to the shot but you should see how red his little face looked. You've seen the kidletts at Disneyland--does this happen when Mickey or Goofey show up?

Abundant blessings!

Jeanne Damoff said...

"Chuck E. can’t dance on the beat to save his cheese."

Ha! I love that. :)

Malia Spencer said...

Hey, I LOVED my Chuck E. Cheese 5th birthday party. That was one of the best parties ever.

Now Santa Claus? The big guy scared me. I couldn't stop crying. Of course I was like 3 at the time. :)

But I agree with Jeanne, I love that line. Easy to tell that you're a writer.

Sabrina L. Fox said...

"Chuck E. can’t dance on the beat to save his cheese."

Very funny! When you mentioned the party this week I thought, better her than me. I hate that place. It's as bad as Wal-Mart. My blood pressure goes up just thinking about it. And the poor kids spend like 8 hours trying to win some cool toy only to come back with a pencil top eraser.

I'd rather give the kid $10 and take him to Wal-Ma...Oh wait. I guess I'd just rather give him $10.

Dineen A. Miller said...

LOL! Don't invite the mouse...
We have one of those here. The last time I'd been one was for my oldest daughter's third birthday. Not an experience I wanted to repeat but this was a friend. The mouse on the outside was at least 25 feet tall! Talk about could see him from the interestate. (shudder)

Jennifer Tiszai said...

Yeah, Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny are up there with the scary creatures too. My kids always cried if they ever saw Santa at the mall. Here we tell them not to talk to strangers and then we put them on some stranger's lap that doesn't look at anyone they've ever seen before . . . Think we're providing some therapists with a good living?

They same thing does happen at Disneyland but to a little lesser extent because a lot of the characters the kids have seen on TV, movies, videos, etc. so they aren't as strange. However, as much as Calvin adores Buzz, he wouldn't go up to him. Just stared from a safe distance. I think he was wondering how Buzz fits in the TV if he's that big.

Linda Fulkerson said...

This post brought back memories of how terrified my daughter was of clowns when she was younger. We tried everything to convince her that the clowns weren't in her room, trying to get her--including spraying air freshener and telling her it was clown spray. (Oh, the lies we sometime tell as parents--shame, shame!)The only thing that fixed the clown situation was the day we moved from Hawaii back to the mainland (when she was not quite 3) and showed her the ocean out of the plane window. Her first question was, "Can clowns swim?" Answer? "No! Of course not." And since she didn't see any clowns on the plane with us, from that day forward she decided they must all be back in Hawaii. I bet she won't be going there for her honeymoon!