dunking-booth-seriesI took the bullying conversation to the streets last Friday, for Mayday Playday. I was in the dunking booth for the family fun and music fest in Berlin MD.  I can be a loud mouth and attention whore some of the time, so  volunteering for the dunking booth was not something I was wary of.  What I was not ready for was how much I would enjoy yelling at people, and that the vast majority of those people where actually little people, no not those little people, children.

The goal of any good dunkie is to agitate and distract the softball throwing dunker.  As well as to run your mouth consistently to the point that the desire of onlookers become so great that they want to join in the action.  Mayday Playday in Berlin is put on by  Ocean 98.1, the radio station of which locks me in the studio every saturday night to “keep me off the streets.”  As with any radio station event the possibility to get a loud mouth radio bully ( I don’t know, someone like DJBK?) soaking wet at your own doing is a perfect recipe for fun.

I was expecting listeners, that skew a little older, to be participants in the dunking booth, but they weren’t. Instead it was their kids!  After the crowd was warmed up, and the water level reduced by the big man DJ Biggler,  I took the seat, only to be stared down by some of the same kids that I’ve seen running around with my own children.  So I did my duty, I tore into the little ruffians with the conviction of mad man, making fun of their hair, making fun of the parents  business in town, in one instance I had an out of body experience where I saw myself shouting down at a 5 yr old “NO self respecting person wears Croc’s in public!”

Then I hit a stride and couldn’t stop.  The lovely Ms Jessica took my spot in the hot seat for a bit but I couldn’t stop, with bull horn in hand I berated kids in the street even going with the ol’ four eyes insult. I was dunked a few more times and got to make fun of some adults too before it was all over .

As I reflect on, or justify,  my time in the booth I think I was doing a favor for the kids and the community as a whole.  There is a lot of conversation going on about bullying recently and so my public service reminder is that ‘ Sticks and stones may break your bones, but names will never hurt you,…four eyes!’  After all we don’t want a community of kids that grow into adults that don’t know how to define their own self worth within themselves, under adverse conditions.