England is a jolly place, but don’t try to get too jolly if you haven’t paid for the proper package. That’s the lesson one father learned when he had the police called on him after trying to sing “Happy Birthday” to his 8-year-old daughter.
The incident occurred while Colm Doherty was celebrating his daughter Cara’s birthday at Clowntown, a popular children’s play center. According to the London Evening Standard, “Mrs Doherty had previously contacted Clowntown to ask if they could book a birthday party for 20 children and six adults but was told there was no availability.”
No problem: the family went anyways and were pleased to find party tables available when they arrived. A staff member gave them permission to use them.
But the Clowntown employee quickly realized she had made a huge mistake: party tables are only for people who book a “birthday package.” Furthermore, “Clowntown said it was ‘against company policy’ for guests to sing the birthday song on their premises unless they have specifically booked to have a party.”
Tempers began to flare when a cake was produced. An attempt at singing was the final straw. Thank god no party hats were donned or this might have turned into a full-on melee.
Police confirm that they did speak to Mr. Doherty, however, “no formal action” was taken. Probably because, you know, singing “Happy Birthday” isn’t much of a crime. Unless you’re terribly off-key.