Monday, November 24, 2008

I totally jinxed myself...

Last Saturday, we were driving back from the movies where we'd just spent a very enjoyable afternoon watching the new Disney film Bolt, in 3D no less. (The movie, by the by, earns three thumbs up from the Smith family - it was quite entertaining, and Rhino the hamster was hysterical!) Anyhow, as we were driving home we passed a certain restaurant that is located less than 2 miles from our house, and I remarked to Hubby how amazing it was to me that we've lived in such proximity to this particular restaurant and had never been inside. He responded that he was sure that we'd wind up there one of these days, and I concurred that it did seem inevitable that the day would come, but that I was glad we'd made it this long without setting foot inside those doors.

You see, this isn't any old restaurant I'm talking about. It's THE restaurant. The one that strikes fear into the heart of parents everywhere. Oh yes, I mean the Rodent's Pizza Place, better known as.............


Chuck E. Cheese's.




Yes, Mr. Cheese's building of doom has been the Final Frontier for us as parents. We've managed to
live 4 minutes away from one of the two area locations and raise a child for the past 5 and a half years without ever darkening the mouse's door. I confess that I gloated a wee bit in the car on Saturday, smug in my Cheese-less existence. After all, this is the place which has caused far wittier bloggers than I to rave on (rather hilariously) about the nightmare that it is:

A chaotic sugar-fueled germ-fest of shoeless children running amok amidst clanging game machines and miserable parents.

You know what's coming, don't you? You guessed it - I totally jinxed myself. Not 48 hours after my saying the words aloud, Kiddo came bouncing off the school bus and tore open her backpack, pulling out a small, square envelope and brandishing it aloft.

"What's that, honey?" I asked, still not hearing the warning bell....

"It's a BIRTHDAY PARTY, Mom! And it's at -"

I opened the card and read the words at the exact same time that she said the words, oh, the dreaded words....

"CHUCK E. CHEESE'S!!!!"


I felt a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach as the words stared me in the face. Karma is an evil mistress, is she not? Needless to say, this clearly was the talk of the kindergarten class today. The birthday boy is one of the kids Kiddo plays with regularly, at least per her reporting at the dinner table. (Kiddo prefers to play "Superhero Spies" with two of the boys rather than play "Girl Scouts" with the majority of the girls. She is usually Batman but sometimes she gets to be Spiderman. Please bear in mind that she has never seen a single minute of any TV show or movie about said superheros. I can only imagine what she thinks they are or do...)

So, I'm torn. You see, the party is at 6pm on a weeknight. It goes until 7:30, which is a half hour past Kiddo's normal bedtime. She's usually in her jammies by 6:00. But, again, the birthday boy is one of Kiddo's friends, and it is close to our home. We could conceivably go to the party (it says that an adult MUST accompany the child to the party) and still have her home and in bed not too much past her bedtime. With her SPD, we try to keep her on as strict a routine as possible; it just makes things go a lot more smoothly. This could potentially throw her out of whack for two or three days thereafter.

And, you know, it's at the mouse's (or is he a rat? No, he must be a mouse - a rat doesn't make for good marketing for, you know, a place that serves food, though I don't think a mouse is that much better...).

Oh, who am I kidding - we'll most likely be going. I'll RSVP yes and then as long as Kiddo is doing okay otherwise that day (isn't sick or out of sync or having a bad day), we'll go.

Yep, we'll go (and by we I totally mean Hubby), all right, and Kiddo will find out what she's been missing all these years, and will finally know how badly she's been deprived. One more thing she'll have to talk to her future therapist about... I asked Kiddo "So, what is Chuck E. Cheese's, anyway?" Her answer: "Ummm.... it's a store with cakes in it." Yes indeed, major therapy bills in our future. She'll see those games, the ball pit, the chance to win tickets and trade them for prizes, and she'll figure out how close we live (she's said hello to Chuck's picture, there on the front of the building, at least a hundred times as we've driven past over the years) and she'll know. And it will all be over. Dagnabit.

At least we made it five and a half good, CEC-free years...!

8 comments:

Hot Tub Lizzy said...

Essie still wants to go to Chuck's this year... I ONLY allow Chuck's on birthdays... NO OTHER TIMES. Even though I vividly remember my own fun times at Chuck when I was little...

Hopefully next year we'll be in Atlanta and I can con everyone with dave & busters.

Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

Umm, I am going to be a total spoil sport here, but I would totally say DON"T GO. If she's dying to go, take her on a weekend or some weeknight when it isn't past her bedtime. Or over T-giving break. Or over Christmas break. Or even better NOT AT ALL. Those places are germ factories. Plus, think about it: if you are a pedophile, where is the best place to go where there are a zillion kids, loud distracting music, and parents who can't keep track of their kids? YES, CHUCK E CHEESE. Plus, if you want Kiddo to learn good manners and behavior, this place will totally UNDO anything you've taught her. CEC encourages kids to go nuts, disregard typical behavior rules, ignore parents, and beg for more tokens more tokens MORE TOKENS. I guess you could say "Eh, it's a rite of passage." but you can say that about a lot of things. It's up to you but if you decide not to take her, you won't be thought of as a weenie. Just my opinion!:-)

Debbie said...

That place requires more medication than I am willing to take!

Kelsey said...

Congrats on making it 5 years! I think I was 7 before I saw the inside of one of those places and that was only because it was on a school field trip.
It's not that bad..the loud shrieking children, the obnoxious singing rat, the money eating machines...yeah, who am I kidding? It's every parent's nightmare for a good reason.

Jennifer said...

I think Chuck E. is a rat! A big hateful rat!

My friend and I describe the smell that inhabits Mr. Cheese's as "purple."

Some family trivia--every time I go there either one of my kids or someone's kid else throws up.

And--a weeknight party at 6 pm!?!

Good luck--I don't envvy you!!

nikkicrumpet said...

AWWWW God help you all! It's a horrific place...it should be illegal lol

Abounader Photography said...

Ok, I can't WAIT Till she goes and you Blog about it.. it should be HYSTERICAL!

momma said...

we loved bolt, too. as for cec, our closest one is 45 minutes away. so we don't have to deal with that often. i, personally, think the pizza taste like cardboard!