>Husband and I joined a group of friends and family in celebrating our friend Dr. F's son's first birthday. Our other friend Maria arrived before we did, and was waiting for the festivities when the evening's entertainment, Noodles the Clown, arrived in civilian clothes.

"Oh, no!" she said when she realized that Maria was with the party. "You didn't see me like this!"

"No problem," Maria replied. "Your secret is safe with me."

Noodles leaned in and lowered her voice to a whisper. "Later, I will change genders and species."

"Uh, oh. OK." Maria said, wondering what exactly this clown had in store for us.

Turns out that she changed from Noodles to Mickey Mouse, back to Noodles (to perform a birthday rap with a beat circa 1985, sort of like my mom likes to do at family functions), then to Elmo, ending the night as Noodles. It was as exhausting as it sounds, and a good time was had by all.