Updated: Sep 24, 2018
If you're an old-school Daddy & Dad reader from back in the day (we're talking right back in 2014), you'll remember that I used to produce blog posts from my uncomfortable plastic garden chair at PlayHard - the enormous (but very reasonable) soft play centre in town with the nice coffee. The people at PlayHard used to provide me with some excellent content; we had little girls weeing on mums heads from the rope-bridge above, swearing mums with ciggies down their bras, kids with lick-on tattoos and feral children colonising the big slide.
Well, thank goodness the days of soft play centres are firmly in the past now that Lyall and Rich are giant, nearly nine and ten year olds. However, Playhard has been replaced with a trampoline park called Jump. I've renamed it 'Trump' because, well, I don't like it. It's loud, sweaty and jumped up, and I'm going to have to put up with it for at least the next four years (I'm here all week!).
Trump tickets are a tenner for two so here I am, broadcasting to you from Trump; waving camply and wincing toward the boys as they perform dangerous somersaults from one trampoline to another. In a moment of mild annoyance I just noticed Lyall's bum quite literally hanging out of his tracksuit bottoms, pulling an inadvertent moony to all the mums and to me in the cafe. I can't be arsed to go right down there, take off my shoes and clamber up onto the trampolines to pull his pants up (there's no dignified way to get on there), so instead I perform an extremely dignified, over-the-top charade of pulling up pants - much to all the mums' entertainment. Lyall isn't looking. Sigh.
Anyway, ignoring Lyall's bum situation, I'm here to tell you all about one of my most nostalgic and favourite childhood devotions, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.
As a lad back in the 1990s, I was a MASSIVE fan of the Turtles. Scrap that, I wanted to BE a Ninja Turtle. On Sunday mornings I would run in circles around the downstairs of our house in Plympton, pyjamas on, red sock around my head, Mum's green washing basket attached to my back with sticky tape, shouting "Cowabunga" with vacant glee. I have no idea what Mum must have thought - she probably assumed I was pretending to be some strange washing basket hobo. Speaking of which, I aspire to have a house with a downstairs the kids can run around a full circle in - through the hall, kitchen, dining room, living room and back through the hall etc. Our current house only allows a short shuttle-run back and forth between the kitchen and living room. Boo.
Back to the Turtles then, I didn't really have a favourite, but I particularly loved Raphael. He's definitely the gay one (don't care what anybody else says).
My love for the TMNT was successfully passed down to my boys, Lyall and Rich. They've seen all the Ninja Turtles movies (we all agree the original is still the best), they've got the toys and the actual proper dressing up outfits (not a torn-up sock and washing basket shell in sight).
You can only imagine our (my) excitement when we received an invitation to Nickelodeon's launch party for The Rise of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, at the Turtle's secret lair in London. We weren't going to miss this. Not to mention, in an absolute first, the press release described us as celebrity parents (to be honest I think we just happened to be grouped in with the well known ones)! So, trains booked and picnic packed, we were off!
The event celebrated the launch of the new series of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles which starts this coming Saturday (22nd September 2018) at 10am on Nicktoons and Channel 5 in the UK. The new animated series harks back to the comic-book american cool of the 1990s TMNTs I used to adore. 💚 No CGI here, thank you very much.
Set in a TMNT themed bunker in London, we were invited right into the #TurtlesLair. It was surprisingly immersive, with Ninja Turtles graffiti everywhere, a huge skatepark, loud hip hop music and green smoking bins that looked a bit like sewage pipes (at least I think that's what they were going for).
Rubbing shoulders with actual celebrities, including Danny Dyer and his family ("Look Daddy, that's the man with the black hair off Eastenders" shouted Richard, literally a metre from Danny Dyer 🙄), Michelle from Liberty X (another nostalgic throwback for Daddy) and my dear friend and TV personality Al from The DadsNet, we were all treated to several TMNT activities including skateboarding lessons, vintage arcade games and unlimited pizza.
It was AWESOME! I'll leave you with some pics from the day. Right - I'm going to go down there and sort Lyall's trousers out now! x