Tina (not her real name) sounded charming on the phone. She called to confirm all of the specifics for the weekend like our address, the time she should arrive and even asked if there would be a spot to set up face painting and balloon bending. I explained that Cinderella showing up to the party would be a surprise so she could set up all her stuff after her arrival knocked the training pants off my daughter and her friends.
She worked for the same company responsible for dispatching Spider-Man to The Kid’s 4th birthday. Spider-Man was worth every dollar.The guy either really enjoyed his work or snorted lines of coke off his dashboard before every party. Spidey made a grand entrance by hurdling the neighbor’s fence, gorilla-pressing every kid until he gave himself a slight hernia and even entertained the adults with his over-the-top performance character commitment and Crown Royal bag full of candy for the kids. No lie, he passed out candy to kids in one of those plush purple bags that hold the bottles of booze.
Close your eyes. Imagine Cinderella. Now imagine the type of young woman who would portray Cinderella. That girl didn’t show up. Our Cinderella got out of the car and was incredibly sweet and soft spoken and wearing black leather sandals, black leggings and, I’m trying not to stare, but her zebra print bra is visible under her blue…dress? The look on my face probably screamed, “did Cinderella survive the carriage crash that kept her from this party and are you her agreeable olive-skinned, thick-browed half sister?”
She was excited about the party, she said, right before introducing her friend/assistant. Remember Cinderella in your mind? HER FRIEND LOOKED EXACTLY LIKE THAT! Maybe this was a joke. Maybe they do this fun thing where the short ethnic friend shows up in the dress and then they go “BOOM! WE GOT YOU GOOD, BITCH!” and then the tall blonde throws on the dress and we all laugh and I don’t feel as though I’m about to blow $150.
So all the girls are huddled around a coloring table in the backyard and like a carnival barker I’m all “girls, look who’s here for the party” and all their little eyes dart past me and there was no music playing, but I swear to shit I heard a record scratch.
This photo captures Cinderella making her entrance. In an effort to hide her identity I covered just how awful the wig was. It was Harpo Marx-level ridiculous. Also not see are five young girl making the most WTF faces ever.
I don’t blame this young girl. She signed up to work kids parties and she knows she doesn’t look like Cinderella but when the company asks “can you pull off Cinderella?” and then says “It doesn’t matter because we’re sending you a dress to wear. It might not fit. You might need to safety pin the back. They’re kids, they won’t notice. They talk to bunnies in malls, they’ll believe anything.” She responds “I think I can do it” because of student loans and rent and finds it hard to say no but “wouldn’t they rather have Jasmine? I’d NAIL Jasmine” but it’s party time and she hopes there won’t be an issue. And there wasn’t an issue because I’m not going to lose my shit on a cosplay Disney princess at my kid’s 4th birthday. This isn’t the Real Housewives of Epcot.
After the entertainment had left, one of the mothers confided that her daughter pulled her aside and said, “Mommy, I know that’s not the real Cinderella, but I pretended she was for the party.”
My daughter asked why she wasn’t wearing a black choker or a crown or glass slippers. HOW DO YOU NOT HAVE GLASS SLIPPERS OR A CROWN?!?!?! YOU’RE A PRINCESS!!!!!
Every kid’s party plan looks perfect on paper. Something always goes wrong. The perfect party is a dream and a dream is a wish your heart makes.
Next year we’re bringing back Spider-Man in a Jasmine costume and he better bring a bump for all of us.