We had Silas’ birthday party a week early because I’ve got a show opening this weekend and…I just. There’s no way.
Silas was struggling for a while to come up with a theme. He is very into a wide array of anime and manga right now, and he kept thinking of specific ones that might make a good party theme. I finally pointed out that there wasn’t one that would be recognizable to all, or even most, of his guests. Maybe he could do a convention-themed party, so all the anime and manga would be relevant?
He dug this idea, and we came up with a name: “SirasuCon.” “Sirasu” is the Japanese transliteration of “Silas.”
The only problem: We haven’t ever actually been to a con. So we checked in with friends who have. What are the salient details? Interestingly, everyone mentioned badges and schedules.
Excellent, and not hard. One friend said that cosplay competitions were an important part of the experience for her. Another friend mentioned panels. Somebody else suggested autographs. Oh, and trivia!
So… we did our best. I tried to get Silas to make anime-style portraits of his guests to autograph, but he got stuck in a perfectionist storm and that didn’t get done. And when it was time for the “panel,” nobody was interested. But the rest of it went as planned.
I made a “step and repeat” for photo ops, and designed a “Sirasucon” logo. We got some cute pictures.
For food, we went to Food Maxx and picked up all kinds of Japanese food (lobster-flavored chips? okay…). Silas also requested that I make “big eyes / small mouth” deviled eggs. The cake was not my finest (and I’m not generally good at cake decorating!); he wanted it to look like a convention hall. But it was delicious so…
Silas devised an anime trivia game that was really hard. We also had a cosplay contest, and even brought in professional judges. Even I dressed up (I forget what character I was being, the kids told me one).
I don’t know if this would happen at a real anime convention, but Jude asked me to put up the bubble machine, and the kids spent a lot of time whacking the bubbles with random weaponry.
More and more, though, the kids spend most of their time hanging out and making their own fun. The “themed birthday party” is a concept I think they’re outgrowing, but aren’t willing to yield yet. I told Silas he gets one more, when he turns 15, and then he’s going to have to start planning his own elaborate soirees. Petra actually will get three more, which will work out to the same number overall (because Silas is older).
Silas was pretty ticked when I told him that. He says for his 15th birthday, he wants to do a “greatest hits” party, featuring all the things that were the coolest from each of his previous birthday parties. I guess Grandpa better dust off his Monkey King costume…
Silas birthday parties of the past: