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Summer Fun

June 18, 2007
To kick off the summer and to practice our skills for another one on Summer Solstice, we had a water balloon launch yesterday. I cannot call it a water balloon war or fight because it was too much fun. First, I spent most of the day filling the balloons with water, taking a break after every five or six filled. Why would filling water balloons be so taxing? Because tying a balloon after it is filled with air or water causes me to scrap the skin off my finger. I hate it. I asked the DH how did he manage when he was a kid and he said he and a few other boys would tell younger (smaller) boys that it would be a great idea to have a water balloon fight and while the younger boys enthusiastically filled the balloons to prepare for inclusive fun they never suspected that the pathetic macho boys would take the filled balloons away from them after they were finished. Assholes. So in other words, he was of no help to me. After about the tenth one I tried to think of a solution to solve my dilemma. I took the wooden cuticle stick that comes in cheap manicure kits and tried to stretched the balloon around the wood instead of my finger but then I found that I still had to put a finger underneath in order to stretch the rubber out long enough to put the loop through for the tie. Then I had the problem with sliding the tied balloon off the stick. It did become easier as the stick got wetter though. After the disaster of three or four balloons and almost puncturing a hole in it with the cuticle stick, I solicited the little one to hold the stick and stretch it away when I was tying the balloon so I would have a wider hole and not have to touch my finger’s skin. That worked for a quick minute. Finally, the answer came to me accidentally. I did not like how one half of the balloon seemed to stretch more than the bottom half causing the balloon to look like a breast with a nipple on it. Therefore, instead of just stretching the mouth of the balloon over the end of the faucet I stretched up a few inches thinking the bottom of the balloon would fill up more. While the water was filling the balloon, the neck of the balloon stretched vertical and extended like a long neck decanter. Once I removed the balloon from the faucet the part I had to tie was so stretched out and flexible that I was able to make a loop without touching my finger. From then on out, it was a breeze. We had thirty-two balloons in all and will have forty-five for summer solstice.

I must admit I went into the launch with a prejudice. I was convinced I would have to side with the little one and help her fight off DH thinking he would become one of those men who have to make everything competitive and brutal. I have trauma from participating in paint ball wars with those jerks in the military. We made the mistake of not negotiating the terms of the launch. For example, after I grabbed about two balloons and the little one grabbed one, he did not leave the area of the bucket. Therefore, he had an endless supply of balloons while we were running ducks. However instead of painfully bombing us, he launched the balloon as high in the air as possible, and quite honestly it was brilliant (or at least to me, probably true water balloonists have practice this technique for years). When the balloon hit the ground the force would cause a wider and wetter spay. Which was better than being directly hit because most of the time the balloon would not break on body contact and would just slowly bounce off and burst on the ground, making no one wet. A few times I was able to catch the balloon unbroken and launch it back.

Even though I admit his technique was brilliant I could not stop laughing about it. It was so weak that it was too hilarious. And the little one could not grasp that she had enough time to determine where the balloon would land and just stood there frozen and ended up soaked. The look on her face just made me laugh more. I laughed so hard that I could barely run and I had a hard time breathing. Imagine hysterically laughing, trying to run away from a balloon while trying to launch a balloon, while trying to catch a balloon. My stomach muscles are sore from laughing. And the poor dog, he did not know what to think. Yet I was the victor (in my own mind) because the other two had to change their clothes afterwards, I just had wet feet.

The first picture is the two-foot bucket of ammunition. The second picture is the remnants.

One Comment
  1. momo permalink
    June 19, 2007 12:54 am

    What a great idea! I’m just sorry my little one has just left town because she loves water fights. I’ll have to email them your instructions.

    This reminds me of a memorable water balloon extravaganza at a birthday party in Spain, where we went to a public park with a faucet and filled dozens of balloons. The kids did most of the throwing at each other, but we managed to lob a few.
    At another event, a picnic, we had a water balloon toss, where we formed two lines and tossed water balloons back and forth with a partner. The object was to see how long we could make the balloon last, but it was very unpredictable. I recall that the event ended with some of the younger adults dumping the contents of ice chests down each other’s pants

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