i am not sure where or when the phrase "play date" entered our language, but it pains me when my kids use it. when lucy innocently says, "can i have a play date tomorrow?" my smart ass instinct always wants to respond, "you mean a gay date?" but of course, i don't. the phrase "play date" is almost as bad as "sleep under" (which apparently is defined as a night at a friend's house in which you stay up very late, get into your pajamas, have a pillow fight, but right before you fall asleep your mom / dad comes and picks you up - this is obviously intended to avoid any late night shenanigans.....which i knew nothing about as a child so i can't imagine why the crazies of today would even think of it - what is our world coming to?) in any event, the "play date" trend is out of control. can't we just call it "having a friend over" or "going to a friend's house"? why does it have to be a date? especially when it is two dudes (and 'tough guys' - shane - , please don't try to pretend your strapping young son won't use this phrase or something equally as bad someday).
just the other day lucy got a call from drew neff (a neighborhood friend that will definitely someday be up to late night shenanigans causing jack to only be allowed to attend a "sleep under" at the neff house). drew wanted to know if lucy would like to join him for an afternoon "play date". sounds innocent enough, so lucy agrees. a few minutes later drew pulls up (probably straight through my manicured lawn) in his 4x4 plastic john deere. he comes to the front door (which the neff kids don't do because they know that "back door friends are best") so we knew it was unusual. as we answered the door, i was surprised he wasn't wearing a tux and holding flowers - instead he was in his typical outfit.....shirt, shorts, and two right footed mismatched firefighter / rainboots. i wish lucy still needed to get her shoes so i could have invited drew in, sat him down on the couch and had a really uncomfortable conversation about his future, but we weren't so lucky. lucy skipped out to the john deere, hopped in the passenger seat, and they "sped" off. a few hours later drew dropped lucy off in the john deere.....this time only wearing one boot. now THAT is a "play date". considering that doesn't happen often, the phrase "play date" should not be allowed in our daily life. (so as not to infuriate the neighborhood gossip - aka drew's mom - i will admit that i took some bloggeristic liberties in this story, but the basic outline is true)
awhile ago a girl in jack's class asked to have him over for a "play date" (she will probably propose to her future husband someday too). i took the liberty of creating a "play date application" to see if she qualified. the link to my application is below. feel free to download it and personalize it for your own kids.
gus' 6th birthday
5 weeks ago