I went to a birthday party last week and there was a clown. Ziggy the Clown. He was totally toddler friendly. A regular guy in Hawaiian shorts, a clashing shirt, suspenders and, smart clown he was, no clown makeup. This meant my child could sit on the floor in front of him, and not 40 feet away with her head burrowed in my shirt.
He told them his favorite foods: chicken nuggets, French fries, cake and … refrigerator.
Strawberries, bagels, cookies, and … shoes.
He had those kids in the palm of his hand.
It wasn’t the fanciness of the tricks. It was the unexpected twist. A coloring book “colored itself” when he flipped the pages. Flowers emerged from a wand. A magic wand collapsed. My 3 year old loved it. All the 3 year olds at the party loved it. At the circus, she saw a tiger in a cage disappear. Tiger, the cardboard bunny that went from the box to the back pocket, was more magical than thou.
And the big finale. Balloon animals. Ziggy the Clown gives one child a balloon that wasn’t tied. So as the child is holding it…pffffft. It loses all it air. The captivated audience - rolling on the floor laughing, lollypops sticking in their hair. The kid holding the balloon? He was too fascinated with this hot dog of a balloon that kept disappearing to notice. And Ziggy did this trick not one time, but three. For three times the laughs.
Penelope laughed the entire time and I Iaughed with her. I didn’t even see the show. I was too busy adoring her for “getting it”.