When Gender Reveal Parties Go Wrong


Syracuse News – It was supposed to be a day of celebration. On Saturday afternoon, six members of an Iowa family gathered outside a rural Knoxville, Iowa, home for what society has dubbed a “gender reveal” party. Among the six was a pregnant woman. Her family was there to learn the sex of her baby.

But the reveal – which involved a homemade explosive device – went horribly wrong, shooting metal shrapnel toward the family standing 45 feet away. Pamela Kreimeyer, 56, was struck in the head. She died on impact, officials said.

“Gender reveal” parties have become an obsession for people trying find creative ways to tell the world the sex of the baby they are expecting. Often, these grand reveals are made for social media moments that involve displays of pink or blue. That’s what the Kreimeyer family had planned for.

The family had welded a homemade stand, which was filled with gunpowder, to a metal base. They drilled a hole for a fuse and placed a piece of wood on top of the metal stand. Colored powder was then layered on top of the wood. Then, they put tape on top of the entire assembly, which “inadvertently created a pipe bomb,” authorities said. Around 4 p.m. Saturday, they lit the fuse.

Rather than shooting the colored powder into the air, the contraption exploded outward. A piece of metal struck Pamela Kreimeyer in the head before landing in a nearby field, according to the sheriff’s department. The explosion remains under investigation.

Under investigation? The investigation is over. Some Iowa folks who had only goodness in their hearts accidentally created a pipe bomb, and the pipe bomb did what pipe bombs do: explode. Now is not the time for lingering questions about the family’s decision to assemble a keg of TNT like Wile E. Coyote.

Despite the fact I have no legal jurisdiction to do so, nor do I have a law enforcement background to speak of or any connection to this case, I am formally closing it. Sorry for this grandma to be, sorry for the cop who had to go looking for that piece of metal that ricocheted off her head and into the nearby field, sorry for everyone involved. But we, as a society, have to stop this kind of narcissistic “look at me! look at us!” behavior. You’re having a baby, congrats, it’s not that hard to make one. We’ve all been there before, you get all gussied up and head out for a nice evening at Golden Corral. Maybe it’s payday, maybe you go dutch, or who knows, maybe there’s a blue moon tonight and she picks up the tab. Either way, there’s nothing like looking into her eyes after some fine cuisine and she gives you that look that says “take me, take me now, on top of the perpetual chocolate fountain in front of the other guests.” You don’t, because you know one more strike in this place earns you a lifetime ban, but you find somewhere you can have privacy, like a dead end road, or maybe you have some points saved up at the Motel 6. Then, you’re making the sweetest of love in that after dinner glow, when, whoops a daisy doo, it felt so good you accidentally left it in there. Fine. But, why the need to “get creative” when revealing the gender? Just say “we’re having a boy” or “we’re having a girl”, and get ready for at least 18 years of pure joy and digging yourself into a $300,000 hole to raise it.

Now, you want a gender reveal story, I’ll give you a gender reveal story. I’m the youngest of six kids, and when my Mom told my dad she was pregnant with me, he didn’t say “Yay! Let’s fill a balloon with pink or blue baby powder and then pop it to surprise our friends with the gender!” he said “holy shit, how are we gonna feed another fuckin’ mouth around here?”

Great question, he should have thought of that one while he was up to the devil’s business. Anyway, I’m here now and it’s obviously too late to put me back in. In hindsight, I find my existence to be somewhat ironic, considering I was conceived on a pull-out couch.