Wednesday, June 27, 2007

There Be Pirates

There are so many things that happened during my hiatus that I needed to tell you all about. For example: I had a crazy waitress one night. My boss is kind of mean sometimes. The Sopranos finale sucked an ass. Okay, I guess that is about all that happened. I can't really help it that I lead a very boring life. If I were banging models every other Thursday you would be the first to know, believe me. Of course I would also tell my co-workers, my dog Abigail, most of my neighbors, and my Grandma. I think she would be proud. (Dear Grandma, I am banging models every other Thursday. All my love, Garrett. P.S. Send more of those chocolate chip cookies. They're super swell).

So a few weeks ago I was invited to a friend's son's fifth birthday party. Before I go on, let me just ask what the hell is up with people inviting adults to these kids parties? I mean, I am not related to the kid. I get metric assloads of invitations to friend's kid's parties. The first problem with this arrangement (other than the fact that you have to go) is the present. How much money do you spend of a 3 year old girl's birthday present? For non-child friends, I usually just buy them a few shots and call it good. I guess I should follow the three shot cost rule. Or I guess I could just buy a case of Fruit Punch with a bow on top.

So for this kid's party I start the toy shopping by walking the toy aisle. Unfortunately for me, I did not plan ahead. The usual failsafe thing to do in these situations is to find out ahead of time what kind of game system the kid has, and then purchase a game. Sure you have to spend a little bit of money in this scenario, but the effort is very little. 1) Find game section 2) Pick game that looks like I might want to play it, 3) check rating to make sure the kid's mother doesn't cuss my ass at some later date for the "graphic" video game violence, like some guy getting a bullet to the temple. (On a side note, if you have a ten year old, you need to say up front if you are going to be a prude about murder scenes in video games. How was I supposed to know?)

Like I was saying, I didn't plan ahead. The party was in two hours and I was walking through the store. I couldn't really call my friend at that point, and ask about appropriate gifts - I'd look like a slacker. So I just started walking up and down the aisles. After a few minutes I came across the perfect gift. It was a Pirates of the Caribbean play thing. It came with a sword, eye patch, hat, hook - all kinds of cool stuff. When I was a kid, my friends and I had to get big sticks to play swords, so I figured this kid was going to have the time of his life.

When it came my turn for the kid to open my gift, he ripped the paper off of the box, saw what was within, then jumped up and down clapping and screaming, "A pirate sword, a pirate sword!" I said back, "Don't forget the hook in there, that is pretty cool too."

The kid, I thought somewhat inappropriately, hugged me.

I knew within seconds that something was wrong. The kid's mother asked someone to hand her the package. She looks at it for a minute, then calls my friend over to further inspect it. They whisper something back and forth to each other. Then she looked at the kid, and said, "I don't know that this is the most appropriate gift." All of the parents at the party turned and looked at me like I just shot the kid up with meth. The other kids tried to get up front to see what was so bad about the present. My first thought was, "Holy shit, did I get some gift with a scantily clad woman on it?" I doubted this could be the case because I always notice scantily clad women, even on kids' toys. Then the mother said to the kid (and I am not making this up at all):

"Honey, pirates were not nice people. You don't want to be a pirate because they stole and killed people. Wouldn't you rather be a policeman or a fireman?"

"No! I want a pirate sword!"

"But honey, pirates were the bad guys. Nobody liked them because they hurt other people and were VERY mean." (She gave me a look when she said that).

"But I want a pirate sword"

"Maybe we should talk about it later" she said as she put of the pirate gear behind her, "let's open some other presents."

As things were wrapping up, I went to the mother and said, "I'm sorry I didn't realize pirates were off limits."

She looked at me sort of sternly and said, "Well you didn't know, but we don't like to encourage the sort of violence that those kind of toys promote." She turned on her heels and that was it.

So have things changed so much since I was a kid? I don't remember a birthday before the age of 10 that didn't include some sort of gun or play weapon of one form or another. What is going on in the world that kids are no longer given toys they can use to beat the crap of our their siblings with? I mean, it is not like I gave the kid a Jihad home starter kit. It was a fucking plastic sword.

So in case you have a kid's party coming up. I would recommend a nice set of plastic dishes, or maybe a lovely savings bond. The only good that came out of this party, I don't think I'll be invited back to the sixth birthday party.


Snow White said...


A Lover and a Fighter said...

In my house we got tasers for our birthday. Kept you on your toes, plus it was a fun way to improve cardiovascular health. Try that next time.

Garrett Reid said...

Snow White: I hope you are laughing out loud with me and not at me.

L & F: I'm all about the weapons for toys. When I was 10 my friends and I had a game where we threw 6 lawn darts straight up in the air, and then tried to dodge them. The good old days.

crys said...

that's ricockulous, and about as bad as the retarded neighborhood soccer mom playground who sends her three boys to the playground clad in football helmets so they won't get hurt.

i tend to pee from all the hars.

crys said...


maxfromoz said...

i feel sorry for the kid, how's he going to grow up with such a judgmental mum?

Mr. Shain said...

jihad home starter kit... classic.

mindy said...

I knew a mom once who didn't want her little boy to play with toy guns. You know what the kid did? He fashioned a carrot into a gun and began shooting people with a carrot "bang bang bang!" That is what you call a sad, sad childhood.

stephen said...

Man, I feel sorry for that kid. He's gonna get his ass kicked.

I hate parents like that, and I run across them often. I am in trouble because I took my son out of flag football to let him play tackle football now that he's old enough.

Pansy parents.

Garrett Reid said...

Crys: I must know about "ricockulous"

Max: I know - she is kind of crazy. It was all I could do to keep my mouth shut about the whole thing. But that didn't stop me from trashing her in every re-telling of this story over beers for the next week - and then on this blog.

Mr. S - I am not exactly clear on what comes with a jihad home starter kit - but I am pretty sure it includes an "Death to America" bumper sticker.

Mindy - That is a pretty sad sight. A carrot doesn't even have a good handle on it - and it the whole scenario goes to shit when you are on a stakeout and get hungry.

Stephen - Flag football is for intramural sorority games. It would be like in baseball - allowing runs to be scored if you got "pretty close" to home plate when you slid in.

TK said...

That's fucking lame (the parent's reaction, I mean - not your story).

Coupla thoughts: - 1. Stephen's right. That kids gonna get his ass handed to him when he gets older. Hell, I'd have beaten him up.
2. If parents are going to have such retarded gift rules, they should TELL THE GUESTS when they invite them.

Snow White said...

This blog IS funny, but your tardiness to post isn't! ;-)

Anonymous said...

WTF? My brohter and I got plastic weapons as gifts. And then we had fun throwing lit bottle rockets at each other. And eventually we turned 12, and got real weapons (hunting rifles) as gifts. And we turned out (mostly) okay.