There’s a short, kind of nothing story that showed up on E! about Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner coming together for their daughter Seraphina’s birthday party last weekend. This isn’t exactly newsworthy as the two spent Thanksgiving and Christmas together as a family. Jennifer has been steadfast in publicly supporting him through his issues and has demonstrated a saintly patience when it comes to his missteps (Happy New Year to Chrissy O., wherever she is).
But this wasn’t exactly a joint birthday party. As E! says, “Ben was the first guest to arrive on his motorcycle right as the party was starting.” You know what him showing up on a motorcycle tells me? He didn’t have to bring anything to the party.
Let’s think about this for a minute. Even the most low-key children’s birthday party requires prep. Seraphina turned 9, so maybe she invited a few friends (or had a separate class party), but at minimum there are snacks, decorations, and a cake. This is Jennifer Garner, so I’m guessing homemade was on the menu (and of course healthy and allergen-free options). There were likely gift bags. Someone (probably not Ben Affleck) had to ask Seraphina who she would like to invite, create the evite, manage the RSVPs. There was probably an activity or craft, maybe an entertainer.
Ben Affleck showed up on a motorcycle as the party was starting. Do you think he booked a magician (do 9-year-olds like magicians?) or iced the cupcakes or picked up candles for the cake or created the playlist? Motorcycles are not conducive to picking up balloon bouquets. I think it’s safe to assume Ben did not contribute any sweat equity to this party.
And he shows up on a motorcycle like a divorcé dad from a Lifetime movie (Lainey: or Mark Wahlberg in Daddy’s Home). Was he wearing a leather jacket and sporting four days of scruff? Was his t-shirt stained? (Why are his t-shirts always dirty?!)
The divorcé dad from the Lifetime movie is fun and even loving (and does a great Batman impression), but is not the parent who has their sh-t together. He’s not the one who gets the books back to the library on time or packs extra underwear for swimming lessons. But the divorced dad in the Lifetime movie is tolerated and supported by the totally together mom, even as she finds herself developing feelings for the widowed but still emotionally available soccer coach (who is Dependable Single Parent with two sons).
But Jen isn’t there quite yet. Instead, she will compost the leftover carrot sticks and help Seraphina write her thank you cards while Ben rides off into the sunset, straight to a suite at the Bel-Air Hotel. Bless his heart.