Do playgrounds promote pantslessness?

I’m pretty sure they do. Yesterday at the playground (the indoor one, right in the middle of the most highly trafficked section of the mall), my daughter stopped abruptly in the middle of a game of tag to pull down her pants. As far as I can tell, there was no good reason for this but to see what would happen.

I don’t think she meant for us to catch her – my wife had just turned her back and my daughter didn’t realize I was looking – which makes me wonder how long she’s been doing it in public without us noticing.

Out of sheer shock I had the completely wrong response; I laughed like it was the funniest thing I had seen all day. (And it was. She was completely in devious mode, which always cracks me up.) To my credit, I was able to reign it in pretty quickly and gave her the “I mean business” look effectively enough that she pulled them back up on her own and saved me the embarrassment of chasing a half-naked, maniacally laughing toddler across a crowded playground.

She obviously does this all the time at home (hence her nickname on this site), but it did catch me off-guard out in public. Thankfully, the second time she did it while we were there I was prepared and gave a more appropriate, nonchalant response. After that she didn’t do it again.

We’ve been to this playground a few times before. This is the first time this has happened, but it’s always a crazy environment. So maybe it’s more that crowded playgrounds promote general insanity in humans below the age of 6 and this is just how our daughter’s insanity manifests.

Did/do any of you other parents experience this? If so, what is/was your response?