Thursday, September 17, 2009

Checked by your mate

You know how there are playdates, and then there are... playdates?

Even from an early age, there are those playdates where you are waiting at the window (head OUT the window, even) for the mom to just please hurry up and come, praying to every deity out there (and even a few new ones, such as Holy Crap and Mother of God What the Hell Did This Kid Eat, A Dead Body?), hoping against hope Mommy will pull up in her SUV in precisely that narrow window of time where you can still go, "Oh, look! Whoopsy! That must have just happened. Oh, well. Here you go. Have a nice day!" but before the miasma of whatever the hell that child pooped out permanently fogs your home.

Again. So sorry about those long sentences. I don't know why it happens. I just can't stop sometimes, once it starts, you know? I think it's one of the by-products of being a stay-at-home mom, to tell the truth. You finally get an adult to listen to you and you're afraid if you stop for even one second - one little second - they will get distracted by that damn Blackberry of theirs or one of the kids coming downstairs to whine about their homework or whatever other crazy-ass terrible thing you made them do that day when you are really needing to tell him about Sally Whatsherface and what she said at PTO this morning. And you want to do it now, before Grey's Anatomy starts, because once it does, you are done for the day. Done. You are going to sit there and watch TV and no one is allowed to talk to Mommy any more. Especially if they require three sheets of blue posterboard or 24 cupcakes.

Aw, man. Sorry. It happened again.

Anyway... where was I? Ah, yes.

Of course Mommy of Poopy Playdate never does arrive in that window. In fact, there is probably some kind of secret Mommy Poop Avoidance Radar they hand out at the hospital to the moms of certain "special" babies, for it will never fail that the mom will arrive EXACTLY the moment that you, having decided to tackle that diaper yourself because the fumes were causing the paint in your house to peel, have run the diaper to the garage trash, and are still behind the garbage cans, taking a second to recover from the involuntary retching muscle spasms in the comparatively fresh air.

That is when she will pull into your driveway. And you will get that look. You know the one. Oh... So... The kids are inside...? Alone...? Like you were out in the garage smoking cigarettes and not just disposing of their child's nuclear waste, which should have, if we're honest, been driven to the hazardous waste facility on the outskirts of town.

Anyway.

Playdates don't always get better as the children age, just less smelly.

There will still be plenty of times you will be waiting at the window for Mother of Whiny Obsessive Nose Picker/You Have No Good Toys-Food/Let's Play Toss All The Legos on the Floor Child to hurry up already and come get this little $%&*#@ out of here. The whole point of the playdate in the first place was to give you a break from entertaining your own child so you could finally get the laundry folded in peace, dammit. You were not looking for MORE kids pains in the asses to deal with, that's for sure.

But mostly they get a little better. And of course it goes without saying that if you read this space and your child has ever come to my house they are definitely one of the good ones.

For sure.

No, really, I mean it. I love your kids. They're the best, I tell you. The BEST.

Seriously.

But then just last week, I experienced a whole new category of playdate, one I had never, ever encountered before, in all my 13 years of hosting coping with playdates. It was the extremely rare, never before seen type where you come downstairs and are so awestruck by what is in front of you that all you can manage to do is grab the phone real quick and slink quietly outside, and jam your thumb to the speed-dial.

"What?!" Cranky Pants Man will gripe when he picks up, accustomed, mostly, I'll admit, to daytime phone calls from me involving unwanted information about what he may have done wrong at some point that morning.

"They. Are. Playing. Chess!" I whispered into the phone.

"Huh?!"

"Chess! Well, I'm pretty sure he's getting his ass kicked at it, but yes. Chess."

***silence***

"Hey!" I yell. "Can you hear me now?!!! CHESS! Chess, I said!"

"Yeah, yeah. I heard ya. I heard ya. I was just savoring it, is all. It's not often I get phone calls like these."

"I know!" We sit in agreeable silence, remembering phone calls of Principal's Past and thinking of ones of Parole Officer's Future.

"Well," I finally say, interrupting the silence. "What do you suppose I do?"

"I don't know, hon. Laundry, maybe?"

Oh.

Ech.

******************************************************
You know who's probably good at chess? My friend Gray Matters.


28 comments:

Hillbilly Duhn said...

LOL! I know these run on sentences. I used to run out the door to greet hubs when he drove up, so I could tell him about my day BEFORE he even got into the house, because once he did, the kids needed his attention or I needed to do this for them, all balanced on one foot while I finished supper.

Now, I've learned though to let them greet him at the car, let them talk and walk and it's my turn once he makes it in the house, and they've been getting the very firm, mommy and daddy in sync roar - WAIT YOUR TURN! - It totally rocks.

Chris said...

And this is why I don't host playdates. I grant you that it makes it a trifle difficult to continually find NEW moms that will invite my child over for a playdate that is never reciprocated unless I am very very VERY sure their child is not a wild hellion spawned from the ... well, better not go there.

I love long sentences too. Had to get it all in there before you moved onto the next comment. ;)

Shelley said...

MadMad, you slay me. You're one of the good ones. Seriously. "Principals Past and Parole Officers Future" almost made me pee my pants.

I don't host playdates. I want my kids to play at other people's houses. Is that wrong?

Martha said...

Bizarrely enough, I have a friend who ONLY hosts playdates at her house. She says she has control issues. AND she lives in Las Vegas, where the temps are over 100 degrees 8 months out of the year, so they all HAVE to stay inside the house.... How she does it, I'm not sure....

Manic Mommy said...

My husband especially loves it when I call him then speak almost exclusively to the children who always seem to suddenly materialize as soon as the phone is placed to my ear.

Seanna Lea said...

I am pretty bad at chess having learned it from a book.

Playdates sound like torture. (And at least the play date didn't involve more mate and date than check).

Gray Matter said...

Leave it to you to start off with poop and end up with chess. You are a blog maestro. So, does your kid wanna come over for a playdate?

Rose Red said...

I'm still giggling over yesterday's post. So who's the chess player? Boy? Because I am sure he'd have a ferme grip on his...rook. A ferme grip on his rook.

kim said...

I cannot even IMAGINE play dates. I mean, I don't even want my own kids; why would I want my own PLUS someone else's?

So funny!

Daffy said...

Can I breath now? Sheesh, I think I only took one breath while reading that whole thing. Girl, you're exhausting!

Barb said...

You left out the category of play date where the mom brings not only your child's friend, but also his two younger siblings. She's hoping that's okay? Just for an hour (two) while she checks in at the office. You're a stay-at-home mom so she's sure you won't mind.

I started saying, "Oh, sure. I'm not supposed to be contagious anymore. But maybe we better make it a little shorter time frame before I have to take my next pill and pass out on the couch."

ymK said...

I don't like the idea of hosting play dates, but I like your long sentences.

Swistle said...

We had a playdate awhile back where the child called out from the bathroom that he needed to be wiped. Yeah. I don't think we've had any playdates since then, now that I think about it.

Kathy B! said...

I love this. I'm going to have to link to you and continue (much less comically) the story...

Bells said...

Oh brilliant. You had from start to finish on what sounds like a fairly miserable, and yet somehow amusing, activity - as long as it's happening to you and not me!

Chess? I hope I get a nerdy chess player for a kid. I think they're nice and quiet.

IslandMom said...

OK, how many of your points rang bells? My head's still ringing....

I did JUST finish my first official batch of 24 cupcakes. As the semi-healthy whole wheat carrot cake with carefully crushed pecans, flax seed, and a spark of chocolate chips went into the pan amidst a wail of woe about how horrible they were, I thought I might crack. I don't know if she'll ever learn chess; just hoping there's life beyond Barbie and Jiffy muffin mix. (oh, it's B Day #6 tomorrow...)

TLCknits said...

Who's Kimmy kiddin? .I'm her Tuesday playdate!

Lisa @ Boondock Ramblings said...

I shouldn't be laughing this hard at work. Where I just typed up a man's obituary. that was sad. And now I'm laughing. Really hard.

It's wrong.

But it feels so right.

(I love the run on sentences too even though I used to get into so much trouble for them at school because they always told me I needed a comma, or a period, but I always figured that if Steinbeck or Hemingway or whomever could write like that then so could I, you know? And since I'm a working mom, I have an opposite reaction to your need to talk to adults. I talk to so many adults that by the end of the day I welcome the maddening conversations with my 2.5 year old -- the ones that involve a lot of "Noooooo!" and "I poop!" I'd much rather hear that from my toddler than my co-workers and the old people who want their senior news in the paper.)

Ree said...

I let Mr. Hot stay home and deal with playdates. ;-)

Mother of Chaos said...

GAH! I HATE playdates. Hate-hate-HATE them. Especially when you get one of those moms who is all "Whaaaaaat, you didn't have a carefully planned and choreographed Learning Experience with Guided Crafts put together?"

Uh...no. But I DID put away the power tools before they started playing up there...

TinkingBell said...

Hahahahaaha! Chess - quiet, character forming, strategic, improving maths skills, winning wars. Chess?

How soon can your kids teach my kids to play - I've got a ton of Laundry here....

Chica said...

Great. This is what I have to look forward to? Coping with playdates? Eeek.

I'll have to break out the chess game early!

WA said...

Yay, you're back!

Five Ferns Fibreholic said...

I'm still getting calls at work from fighting siblings. I think that poop and chess would be easier to handle.

RivkA with a capital A said...

LOVE this post!!

"What?!" Cranky Pants Man will gripe when he picks up, accustomed, mostly, I'll admit, to daytime phone calls from me involving unwanted information about what he may have done wrong at some point that morning.

I know this was not the main part, but I just had to laugh when I read this, realizing that most of the mid-day calls to my own DH are complaints (about him or the kids, odds are about 50-50 for either)

inoriz said...

Hehehe so who's the chess player? Boy or Girl? Love your post. :D

Christine said...

Very funny. I need to put out breadcrumbs so I can find my way back here.

the mama bird diaries said...

Hilarious.

That effin' laundry. It never goes away. Which reminds me that I need to run downstairs and change mine.