Never wrecking ball a little girl’s birthday

Some Wonder Woman party dresses are simply worn. Some are EARNED. This is the story of one brave birthday girl who survived a real-life Attack of the Dad (me, by accident) and kept on partying.

Let me start at the beginning.

I guess my son is a bit of a trendsetter. His birthday party and always-Batman fashion choices helped inspire a preschool classmate to have a Pump It Up party of her own. The theme: Wonder Woman.

Pump It Up is a huge indoor collection of inflatable play structures. We’ve visited a few times, and Champ has a favorite: A dome with four platforms and a giant, swinging foam ball suspended from the ceiling. He calls it “the big red ball machine.”

So when we arrived at the party, he went right in. Other kids were still arriving, and I felt bad that my son was all alone in the bouncer. One of the bigger boys from his class joined us, and we started swinging the wrecking ball around.

Then the birthday girl got in. Here’s what happened next:

Yep. I wrecked the party in the first five minutes, and somebody caught the whole thing on video. I added the Miley Cyrus for effect. I pretty much had to.

In the moment, I thought I was going to gently roll the wrecking ball around the kids. Nope. The birthday girl stepped forward and turned right into it. I didn’t put any zip on it, but the heavy foam ball had enough momentum to shake her up pretty good.

I exited the big red ball machine and apologized profusely to both parents and the birthday girl. I promised I would stay the heck out of that bouncer. She didn’t need much consoling before she got right back in there and resumed roughhousing with the boys.

When everyone sat down in the party room for pizza and cake, the birthday girl made a grand entrance in a new Wonder Woman dress. It was more of a classic Wonder Woman look, but her toughness that morning reminded me of the new Amazonian princess.


Even so, a birthday party shouldn’t be a super-heroic test of resolve. Let this be a cautionary tale for all dads: Don’t go clobbering kids at their own birthday parties. I could wind up blacklisted from future parties like Wreck-It Ralph.

We got her a Wonder Woman sword as a present. I hope she goes easy on her little brother.

Special thanks to Kevin for the video clip.

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