Stunted Adults

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Bad Idea Batman


Now that I’m squarely in my 30s, I am a regular on the toddler birthday party circuit.  Rarely a weekend goes by that I do not find myself face-to-face with a mob of sugar-fueled munchkins.

When I was in my 20s, I could immediately spot the person at the bar who could provide whatever was needed should someone need to increase the fun level of their night.  Now, I can immediately spot the parent at the party who can provide whatever is needed should someone need to increase the fun level of their juice box.  I can also identify the source and deliciousness of a chicken nugget based on sight alone.

These are my new life skills.

On Sunday, I went to one of these birthday parties at my close friends and neighbors’ house for their four-year-old son, who holds a very special place in my heart for many reasons, including because he was the cause of the great nun-cident of 2009.

As Country Boy and I were about to leave the house to walk to the party, our friend called and asked if we could bring over the ladder that we had borrowed from him years ago because he “needed to put Batman on the roof.”

We assumed that our friend was referring to a Batman cardboard cut-out that he wanted to put up on the roof to greet the kids since the birthday boy loves Batman.  We thought that was a very cute idea, albeit a smidge dangerous that someone was going to climb up on the roof.

We had assumed wrong.

Shortly after we arrived, a man started gathering all of the kids in the backyard.  I figured this was just some parent who wanted to lay down the rules of the sandbox because his precious little wonder had a shovel swiped out of her hand.

But then this guy started whipping the toddlers into a frenzy.  Their hands were in the air.  They were screaming.  They were AMPED UP.

This guy wasn’t a parent.  He was a hype man.

Just as I wondered aloud “Why the EFF is there a hype man at a kiddie birthday party?!” this happened:

Batman Roof

Not a cardboard cut-out.

That was Batman, he rolled with a hype man, and he was on the damn roof.

I thought it was kind of questionable that a grown man in tights and a speedo was standing on a roof, but I figured that he would be safe if he stood still and just waved to the adoring kids below him.  And, it was an amazing surprise that all of the kids absolutely loved.

But, Batman didn’t stand still.

Batman decided to dismount the roof.  And, instead of using that nice, safe ladder that we had provided, he was going to jump down.

While I don’t know much about kids, I know a lot about bad ideas.

And this was a bad idea, Batman.

After some obvious hesitation, Batman hung himself off the ledge, dangled for a minute in a decidedly unsuperhero-like position, and then dropped to the ground.  Everyone at the party over the age of 4 held their breath while waiting for the telltale yelp and crunch of a broken ankle.

Because that is the look you want on your audience's face when you make your grand entrance.

Because that is the look you want on your audience’s faces when you make your grand entrance.

Batman, however, shook off the rough landing and began working the crowd.  He was a professional, after all.

Shake it off, man, shake it off.

Shake it off, man, shake it off.  And, yes, that is the hype man in the background working it for his boy B.

I assumed that the period for bad ideas had passed, that Batman would greet the kids, that Batman would lead everyone in singing happy birthday, and that Batman would then be on his way.

I had assumed wrong.

Batman decided, after that roof debacle, that he should do more stunts.  Specifically, he decided to do a flip over the head of the adorable birthday boy in a small backyard filled with toys and unpredictable children. Batman commanded the newly four-year-old to “not move” and then he ran at him full speed and  jumped.

Bad idea, Batman.

Someone really needs to introduce Batman to the concept of Safety First.

Someone really needs to introduce Batman to the concept of Safety First.

And this was not just a bad idea, this was a very bad idea, because Batman could not actually stick the landing on a flip.  Instead, we were treated to many minutes of watching a grown man in tights repeatedly run, jump up in the air, flip over a small child, and then crash-land into a garden shed, a hedge, and a fence.

When it comes to awkward crash landings, Batman is tops.

Batman is no Keri Strug.

I assumed that, once he finished his series of unstuck landings, Batman would have met his bad idea quota for the day.

I had assumed wrong.

Not satisfied with risking death or serious injury to one child, Batman decided to make a bad idea worse.  He invited a gaggle of unpredictable toddlers to sit still in a straight line on the ground.  He was befuddled when the kids didn’t really grasp the concepts of sitting, a straight line, or stillness.

But, yet, this still happened.

But, yet, this still happened.

As is obvious from the final picture, this jump ended with a horrific head-first crash landing.

I assumed that, once Batman somehow managed to jump over the small children without killing any of them and only lightly concussing himself, he would get going while the going was good.

I had assumed wrong.

Next up, our questionable superhero had his hype man take out a rope, stretch it across the yard, and place approximately 10 rubber playground balls that were inflated to maximum capacity along the rope.  He then divided the kids into two teams and said the word every parent dreads: dodgeball.



Who would ever knowingly arm a sugar-fueled toddler mob with actual weapons?!  And command them to use said weapons?!  On each other?!

Bad idea, Batman.


Did you learn nothing from Ben Stiller and Vince Vaughn? Dodgeball is for serious athletes only.

After three separate kids devolved into tears, the balls were put away and Batman grabbed the rope.

I assumed that, finally, he was going to call it a day.

As always, I had assumed wrong.

Instead, Batman decided to play tug of war with the toddlers.

Bad idea, Batman.

This activity required getting all of the kids to all stand on the same side of the rope and understand the concept of pulling.

Tug of War

They didn’t get it.

Once the tears of the fallen and dragged kids were wiped away, I assumed that this really had to be the end.  How could this possibly get any worse?

I had assumed wrong, and it got worse.

Batman and his not-so-trusty sidekick brought out giant hard plastic swords.

More weapons?!

Had we learned nothing from dodgeball?  Four year olds are unpredictable and subject to intense mood swings.  Who would ever give a weapon to an unpredictable and unstable person?  This would be like arming a herd of feral bipolar puppies.  There’s a reason why we don’t do that.

Bad idea, Batman.

Someone was definitely going to poke an eye out.

Someone was definitely going to poke an eye out.

And, as we have come to expect, Batman turned this bad idea into a horrible idea.

The whole point of having Batman at the party was that he was the birthday boy’s hero.  The birthday boy thought that Batman would protect him from the bad guys and save the day.  But, during the ill-advised swordplay, Batman let each and every child, even the birthday boy’s incredibly sweet two-year-old brother, handily defeat him.

Way to crush the dreams of every child at the party Batman.

Killing Batman

Not exactly the guy you want to rely on to save the day.

Finally, after all of that, Batman took his leave.  He waved goodbye to the kids, handed out his business card to all of the adults in the yard, awkwardly hopped over the fence, and ran towards the front of the house.

I assumed we were done with Bad Idea Batman once and for all.

I had assumed wrong.

Instead, Bad Idea Batman climbed back up onto the roof for his grand finale.

ARE YOU KIDDING ME?!  Just stop while you are really, really behind Bad Idea Batman.  Please.

After waving goodbye to the enthralled kids one last time, he took off running towards the front of the roof.  No one saw him jump, but, also, no one saw him climb back down the ladder on the side of the house.

There is at least a 60 percent chance that Bad Idea Batman has taken up permanent residence on my friends’ roof.

Because I look out for my friends, I decided to use the information on the business card to figure out who the superhero squatting on their roof really was.

Turns out, when he’s not Bad Idea Batman, this dude is attempting to make a living as a parkour instructor.

Bad idea, Batman.

But, it does explain everything.


Author: PinotNinja

Writer at A reformed hooligan desperately trying, and generally failing, at the art of being a grown up.

48 thoughts on “Bad Idea Batman

  1. The badassery of Batman is certainly lessened when you see him awkwardly climbing up and down a ladder at a children’s birthday party.

  2. Hilarious! I laughed out loud all the way through! The pictures really added to the story. Thanks, you cheered up my day!

    • Thanks so much! I realized about 5 seconds into the party that I have stumbled onto comedic gold and had to share it with everyone else. I spent most of Batman’s show with my hand over my mouth trying desperately not to laugh directly in his face.

  3. Hahahahahaha… Can’t breathe….. Laughing……. So much inspiration for my kids birthday party next month…!! 😉

    • You must get an aging superhero with questionable stunt and decision-making skills — its equally as entertaining for the adults as for the kids!

      • Haha like “super grand-dad” perhaps? He can shuffle in with his walker and banish the monster of bad dinner table manners with his super powers? Lol. Thank you for the laugh, I loved seeing batman acting … well… less than amazing. Haha!

  4. Your story is hilarious! But I question why your friends did not throw Batman out on his badass and ask for a refund…

    • Because the kids were all quiet, and silence during the second hour of a toddler birthday party is worth any price. Also, our friends were laughing so hysterically with us that no one could calm down enough to pull Batman aside with a straight face and ask him what on Earth he was thinking.

  5. LOL…kudos to you for recognizing the danger to the kids. Boom Boom and I would’ve been sitting there, drink in hand, laughing at this guy. Btw, it’s a codpiece, not a Speedo. But if it was a Speedo that would’ve been hilarious.

    • No kudos should be given, because we were all sitting there, sangrias in hand, laughing at this guy and taking pictures instead of actually addressing the safety issues. Note that no one stopped Batman at any point. Instead, we decided to see just how far he could possibly go.

      What’s the difference between a codpiece and a speedo? Because Bad Idea Batman definitely had a small black spandex swimsuit on over his tights, which often came dangerously close to falling off during his more rigorous failed stunts.

  6. Now I really, really hope this guy ends up on America Ninja Warrior next season…as Batman. Because watching him fall into one of the pools (and let’s be honest, probably on the first obstacle) would be nothing short of comedic gold.

    PARKOUR! ::awkward roll::

    • When The Office parkour scene popped into my head, I immediately thought of you and knew that I needed to find the clip. HARDCORE PARKOUR!

      And America Ninja Warrior would be the perfect milieu for Bad Idea Batman’s skills. Next time my neighbor and I have a few wines, we will definitely be sending him an anonymous email suggesting that he audition for the show.

  7. While I may be biased since I was the procurer of said Bad-idea Batman, I’m beginning to think he was one of my best ideas ever. Prior to Sunday, I thought a toddler birthday party where the children are stunned into still silence while the parents sit and laugh was one of those urban legends you only hear about. Now I think I didn’t pay him enough! As usual, well-chronicled, PNinj, well-chronicled.

    • Hiring Bad Idea Batman was an absolutely fantastic idea. We are going to be talking about that day for at least another 40 years and who can say that about their birthday? That is the greatest gift you could ever give your son.

      You know what, Sunday might just be the most legendary day that our neighborhood has ever seen. People are going to speak of it in hushed tones with eyes full of wonder.

  8. Rather than honor the superhero, it appears this guy tainted the name forever. I can’t imagine that the adults at that party weren’t laughing their heads off. Guess he gave everyone a good show, even if it wasn’t the one he intended!

    • It was an amazing adult comedy show, although part of what made it so amazing was that Bad Idea Batman took himself VERY seriously. We did our best to muffle our laughter and running color commentary, but he must have picked up on it by the end.

  9. Now this is my kind of kids party.

  10. This made my day. Hilarious!

  11. I. Can’t. Breathe. Still. Laughing.

    Forget my KID’S birthday party, I want Bad-Idea-Batman at MY birthday party. I can’t fathom a better birthday present that images of me kicking Batman’s ass.

    • I know! I lived it, spent hours writing about it, and still giggle every time I think about it. I can’t believe none of us “adults,” grabbed one of the swords and took on Batman. We were so busy laughing that we missed one of the greatest opportunities ever!

      Good thing that the birthday boy has a little brother who also likes superheroes since I need a second shot with Bad Idea Batman.

  12. OMG. I would’ve been in tears laughing. I’m practically in tears now from reading this, but had I been there? OMGOMGOMG.

    • It was out of control. I actually had to walk inside the house twice because I was in such a fit of laughter that I was unsuitable to be seen in public and, promptly after dashing inside, I might have snarfed sangria. Luckily, everyone else was too busy looking at Batman to notice me.

  13. Oh no! You captured the drama really well. I kept holding my breath and hoping that Batman would leave, and every time, he really did manage to make it worse. I’m hoping you guys got at least some of it on film. That would make a great movie night!

    • Since there were kids involved, nearly every parent had an iPhone at the ready to videotape everything. And the videos are AMAZING! The highlight is that in even single one you can hear someone hysterically laughing, say “we should probably stop this,” and then do absolutely nothing because he was too busy laughing. Unfortunately, I couldn’t figure out how to post them so you all were stuck with screenshots from the cinematic masterpieces.

  14. Was every parent taking pictures with their phones or taping this? Can you imagine if he had hurt himself or one of the kids? Crazy! Although he would be good to hire for an adult drunk party. 🙂

    • It was a kid’s birthday party, so there was an army of iPhones at the ready. Several of the people at the party were spinal cord injury doctors, and they were more than a little concerned that their services were about to be called upon.

      But, yes, an adult party where you can fight a bumbling Batman would be epic!

  15. First of all, let me commend a) your quality photos and b) your use of them side-by-side. Second of all, can you please send me a copy of this guy’s business card? I’m thinking my dad’s June retirement party just went Next. Level.

    This is incredible. I might not resent those kid birthday party invitations so much if this was waiting on the other side.

    • Thank you! I was inordinately proud of myself for figuring out how to make the side-by-side photos, and I totally didn’t spend an entire afternoon at work creating them. Nope. Not me.

      But, yes, if all kid’s birthday parties come with this kind of entertainment I am so much more down. Screw ponies and clowns, I want a man in tights and a vague hint of death or serious injury in the air.

  16. I stand in awe of your ability to capture these moments so perfectly with your phone. Seriously, I thought I was skilled at this, but I must bow to the master. Incredible.

    • Thanks! Although, I’ll let you in on my secret. Most of these pictures were screenshots taken from videos that Country Boy took on his phone after I shoved him toward Batman and loudly yelled “Tape all of this! It’s magical! Do it!” because I was laughing to hard to stand up let alone operate a camera.

  17. Only in America…unless you know different lol


    Awe inspiring

    Haven’t laughed so much since I saw Ken Dodd fall down a lift shaft (you may have to Google Ken Dodd – UK comedian)

    I’d love to read BIB’s workplace risk assessment


    • Thank you so much!! I wish I could take more credit for the humor, but the universe really gave me a gem to work with when it dropped BIB right into my lap.

      And now I’m going to be giggling about Ken Dodd every time I go to use the elevator at my office.

  18. Reblogged this on the tao of jaklumen and commented:
    Has Team DC on The Official Matticus Kingdom Tug of War seen this yet?
    There is no report of someone dressed up as a Marvel superhero doing this…


    I hired Spiderman for Little Dude’s 4th birthday party. He pulled up in a car, knocked on my door, came into my house, changed, and walked downstairs as “Spiderman.”

    Dude, they’re FOUR. They’re not IDIOTS.

    • Thanks so much!

      Your Spiderman also sounds like he is a certain kind of special. Did he at least spin them a story about how he walked in as Peter Parker but then sensed that the party needed spiderman and transformed into his alter ego? He should have at least attempted to throw them that bone.

  20. Bahahahahaha! Priceless, even more so with sangria!

  21. Only Batman can truly be Batman…

    And I have one more word to say: Ouch!

  22. Jesus. Christ. What was Batman thinking??? Has he gone MENTAL??
    I am writing to the local Health and Safety officer immediately. It’s only a matter of time before there is a Batman-induced death at a kid’s party, and I for one will not stand around and do nothing.
    PS. This post made me almost choke to death on my dinner. GET OUT, BATMAN.

    • Batman is definitely off his meds these days, and I’m glad you’ve found a cause worthy of your talents. You will take down Batman! For the safety of the world! And not just because this is a totally legit excuse to dress up like Poison Ivy and strut around like a total bad ass…

  23. I want a Batman at my next birthday! It’s in June. It would be great if you could actually get Christian Bale.

    (PS: I’ll be able to drink sangria by June. Just sayin’.)

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