A playdate, according to all-knowing Wikipedia, is “an arranged appointment for a few children to get together for a few hours to play.”
I’m going to draw your attention to a few words, now. Focus kids.
…”an arranged appointment for a few children…”
Why’s that important, Sarah? What shenanigans are you up to??? Well, I’ll tell ya. The simple fact is that we’re not, as parents, being honest with ourselves or *GASP* our kids (s’ok, won’t be the last time).
Wiki later goes on to say that, “The intention of a playdate is to give children time to interact freely in a less structured environment than other planned activities might provide.” Okay, so what? Granted, they admit that playdates are to be “less structured.” But c’mon! Get real. Parents (ie: stay-at-homer’s who honest to God have nothing to do but twiddle their thumbs because the maid does the real-life stuff) who have “playdates” are pretty structured people in that they have a 10 o’clock hair appointment with Tad and a 2 o’clock check-in at the spa and they simply need something to fill the gap between the two so that their child doesn’t drive them batshit crazy. ding ding ding! Playdate!
When it comes right down to it, a playdate is a parent’s excuse to “get away” from their kid(s) while still “being with” their kid(s), thus making them appear to be a social, interactive parent. That, my friends, is bullshit. Sure, you may be an avid soccer mom, ever-ready at the sidelines with a juice box and a carrot stick — but all the while you’ve been wondering where the hell all the mosquitoes came from (and so early, too!) and checking to be sure Big Jim hasn’t blocked you in again with the monstrosity that he calls a vehicle. It’s okay! I’m still a newbie, but going to watch Gabe’s class at daycare perform the “first Thanksgiving”, although darling, was AGONIZING. I’m pretty sure two year olds don’t get the concept of hunting & gathering, and omigeez are those potato chips by the turkey loaf?!
So with that being said, I’m not knocking anyone
much for organizing playdates. Hell, I’d be lying if I said I’ve never had a brilliant idea and got together with a few other momma’s & their spawn. But the fact is that so few parents genuinely have time for an “unorganized, organized event” at the (gahhhh) children’s museum with a bunch of other parents who don’t know each other from Adam. I’m doing good to get over to Catie’s to let Gabe & Abi play. And we live FIFTEEN MINUTES from each other. So when the time comes that we both have breathing room, sure we’ll “playdate.” But my grandpa always said, “If it looks like a duck, and it sounds like a duck, it’s a duck. Sometimes it’s Uncle Walter, but that’s a whoooole other story.”
So let me tell you what our playdates consist of: a six pack of Bud Light for the mommas & Gatorade for the kiddos. They play, we shoot the shit… there’s nothing “(un)organized” about it except that the beer is kept a safe distance from the toddlers & within reaching distance of us. Now if that’s not living the playdate dream I don’t know what is. So all you pretentious parents who organize the crap out of your kid’s lives for “structure’s sake”… take a pill, have a beer, and let your kids find their own niche with other kids who don’t have silver spoons shoved up their butts. You may experience a few more hospital trips now, but you’ll be looking at far fewer psychiatric bills when they hit their pre-teens.