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  • April 16, 2014

The Tangential Thinker - Ladue News: Tangential Thinker

The Tangential Thinker

Dictator Tots

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Posted: Thursday, November 4, 2010 12:00 am | Updated: 11:11 pm, Tue Aug 9, 2011.

This is going to sound ridiculous, but I really think it’s true: I need a social secretary. I don’t know if it’s the time of year or a sudden surge in popularity (like going from the proletariat to the bourgeoisie) or if it’s something else altogether, but there is a lot going on. So much so that I spend a huge chunk of my day mapping out the social agenda…driving, picking up friends, getting to sporting events…oh but not for me, for my kids.

    I have said this before, but I’m still trying to wrap my brain around it—when did the social lives of three pre-teens (‘tweens’ as they are now referred to) eclipse my own? First, there are the dances. They seem manageable, only four or five a year. That is, if you do only one dance and if you have only one child. Cranky and Whiny are 12 and 11, and do two different dance groups. That means they are committed to a total of 21 Friday nights between September and April. Remember when Friday was ‘girls’ night’ and Saturday was date night? Good times.

    Just as my tots have become tweens, my weekends have become tweekends. Cranky’s free time has gone from the social equivalent of rotary dial to an iPhone. Last weekend, I didn’t see her, literally. I said good bye to her at carpool pickup Friday morning and didn’t see her until eight o’clock Sunday night when she asked for leftovers and informed me she had a project due the next day. Hmmm.

    I always had this theory that I would be completely on top of what my kids were doing. My own parents were fairly naïve when it came to teenage machinations. Regrettably, I am far more cynical and suspicious. My predicted vigilance; however, was based on the flawed assumption that my children would be around. They’re hard to monitor when they are living with friends. Cranky was out of sight for 60 hours. For all I know, she could have been backstage at a Ludacris concert. I guess I could have her take a picture of herself with her phone and text it to me, but there are ways around that too. With kids and parents, it’s always a battle of wills. Why do I think I can guess who’s going to wear out first? 

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