It was an interesting night last night, and one of the most fun that I think Tia and I have had in years for New Years. No pictures, because, well, I’m an idiot. Despite having the Flip with me, I wasn’t wearing my coat and forgot to grab it for some images of the evening.
Evening and morning. I still can’t believe that I got in at 3:30am, going to bed at 4am. That hasn’t happened in, well, I don’t know how long. I can’t remember the last time I even crossed 2am, though I did hit 1am last weekend catching up on football and a movie when Tia fell asleep.
It’s been our tradition for about 3 or 4 years now to head to Dave and Busters for New Year’s Eve with another couple and their kids. It’s not usually too crowded, the kids have fun, and then we usually go back to their house to toast in the New Year, chat, watch a movie, or something else. A few years ago we stayed up until 1 or so watching Mr. and Mrs. Smith and completely missed the 12 midnight time because we were so engrossed in the movie.
Last night we made it early to Dave and Busters. Tia wasn’t feeling well and we were worried it would be a busted night, but we arrived to eat some dinner and play some shuffleboard and she started to feel better. Actually I didn’t play shuffleboard, but Kendall and Delaney did with Dean’s daughter and her friend.
Kendall finished dinner early and was dying to go play games. She’d found her Derby Horse card along with her D&B card from last year. She’d packed them away and wanted to go get her horse developed. The derby is some game where you pay to enter races, and you train your horse, but they give you a card that you can keep and re-used, entering the same horse in races on new visits. It’s pretty cool, and I was surprised that Kendall was prepared. She had her horse portfolio slung over her shoulder, her tall boots on, and was ready to go.
Fortunately I managed to get her and Delaney playing some shuffleboard and we adults got to chat a bit more. Then Tia, Patty, and Dean went to play shuffleboard with the kids while Kendall dragged me to the game room. We hit her horse derby for a few races, and she did well. Last year she had a baby horse, I guess she still does, and we were near last in every race. This time we paid more attention, and realized we needed to skip the longer races. We ended up finishing second in one, and 5th in another, and she earned over $400 in prize money for her horse (not real money). Last year we earned just about $100.
Kendall’s not into a lot of games, so we did do some skee-ball and another horse game where you roll balls to move your horse in a race. We earned a few tickets and then she tried a spinner game. It’s one of those sucker games where a ball spins around and then stops in a slot, like roulette, but there are only 5 slots. Each has a color, you choose, and you can win tickets. Kendall is lucky, however, as she played 3 times, and hit the smallest color on the third time. 250 tickets!!
I then convinced her to try the Elvis game. It’s one where you drop coins into a slot, they land on a moving platform full of coins, they can fall down a level, and if any from that lower level fall off, you get coupons. Seems easy, it isn’t, and you can spend a lot of money on feeding tokens in it and not knock off any coins. We’ve had success in the past, and Kendall earned like 800 tickets last year that were still on her D&B card.
So I decided to try it. I used her card, and tried a technique of timing a coin to fall flat on the platform and then push other coins when the platform slides back. I found a machine where I could push the coin and have it fall quickly down. In the first set of coins I dropped down, I managed to get like 50 tickets. We were out of money then, so Kendall and I decided to refill our cards and try some more. We came back, found our spot at the machine still open, and so I started working the machine.
I guess it’s like a slot machine since I wasn’t really watching the tickets, I was concentrating on getting coins stacked. Before I knew it my feet were covered with tickets and Kendall kept saying I was the “ticket master” and she was swiping her card in the machine for more tokens. The tokens come out fast, and sometimes bounce on the floor, so while I was trying to feed them in, Kendall would notice me getting low, swipe her card, and plant her boot over the bucket to trap the tokens.
By the time Tia found us, we’d exhausted my card, and a good portion of Kendall’s, but we had a huge pile of tickets. We turned them in and found that along with the 800 from last year, we had about 3900 from this year. I’ve never had that many, and Kendall was excited to trade them in for a few stuffed animals.
By this time my eyes were tired, and we headed back out, stopping to let Tia and Patty shoot some zombies in House of the Dead 2. Dean and Delaney had played that most of the night and done well, and were laughing at how the girls did. That ended quickly, and we were surprised by a waited as we walked out offering champagne. I checked my phone and it was 11:47!
Wow, no wonder my eyes were tired. Usually we’re out of D&B by 10pm. We watched the ball drop at the bar, seeing Jennifer Lopez’s crazy outfit. Then we headed out, almost thinking to go home, but we made it over to Dean’s with kids still awake.
They got fondue ready, using a double boiler, and lots of cake, bananas, strawberries, cherries, and marshmellows. Kendall was thrilled with that, and it was nearly 1am when we went down to play some Rock Band. It’s taken hold of the adults this year, and we had a good time, doing a few Rock Band numbers before switching to the Beatles.
Kendall fell asleep, but the rest of us kept going, taking turns on instruments, though I got stuck no drums a lot. Drums are hard, and no one wanted to mess with them. I like them, except for the foot pedal. It’s a lot of work and my leg gets tired, but I managed to score 90% most of the time on medium. I was working for it, and while I should try hard, I’m a little intimidated.
It was 3am before we quit, everyone tired, having gone through a good slice of the Beatles catalogue. I drove home, managing to stick to the speed limit and fall into bed finally at 4am. A long, long night.
But a fun one, and something to look forward to next year for sure, if not sooner.