Photo Credit: TLC
Did you catch the season premiere of TLC's Outrageous Kid Parties last night? In case you missed it, it was basically two half-hours of complete and total insanity.
First, Long Island mom Donna threw her 5-year-old son, Derek, a preschool graduation party -- wait, I'm sorry, a “Willy Wonka Candy Fantasy” party -- complete with choreographed dancers, aerialists, a rock climbing wall, a $2,500 cake and enough candy to sicken every preschooler in Long Island (more than $1,300 worth, and that's in addition to the $5,000 catering price tag). Little Derek even wore a pint-sized $350 Willy Wonka costume to compliment his dyed-purple-for-the-occasion mohawk. The party ends up costing just a smidge less than $32,000.
And in North Carolina, when Sadie turns 6, her parents go all out throwing her a gigantic “Country Carnival” hoedown for more than 250 people, complete with a band, a rotating $4,000 cake, a $600 limo and a dog show, for a grand total of more than $32,500. More disturbing than the price tag was the fact that Sadie's mom seemed to put words in Sadie's mouth to get exactly what she wanted. I'm not sure how a newly-minted 6-year-old could dream up an elaborate 10-inch teddy bear tattoo airbrushed onto her back, but her mother insists it's what she really wants.
I don't know what offends me more about these two particular bashes -- the fact that parties like this even exist, or the fact that the two mothers featured last night both went against their husband's wishes and absolutely blew through the budgets they'd promised to stick to. I found it alarming that going over budget by 200% wasn't really a concern for these moms. (In fact, after spending almost three times her original $500 candy budget, Donna ripped up the receipt so her husband wouldn't find out. And if it hadn't been for that pesky filming crew, she might have gotten away with it.) Nice marriage!
Of course, these days excess like this is particularly nauseating, which is why it was easy to hate these parents, and why people will probably be transfixed by the show and parties week after week. I don't even want think about the effect this all has on the kids. At the end of her episode, Sadie declared she would have an even bigger and better party for her seventh birthday. (Imagine her sweet 16!)
All I can say is, ugh. Just, ugh.