Being the Dad

It’s my dad’s birthday. In honor of him, here is a post.

I’ve heard a lot of girls talk about what it’s like to be the Mom of their friend group: the dependable one, who people can turn to for care or comfort, who will sew your buttons back on and make you a hearty stew, who will dish out practical and sympathetic wisdom to help you overcome your obstacles.

I’ve never heard anyone refer to being the Dad of their group, especially a group of mostly females, but after giving it careful consideration over the years, I know that I’m definitely the Dad. Or the uncle who walks around in his undershirt and overstays his welcome on holidays. It’s a toss-up. Either way, take that, gender roles!

Here is the following evidence that I am your Dad:

  1. If you cry in front of me, I will feel very, very bad about it and will most certainly want it to stop, but I will have no idea what to do. I will naturally respond with an inappropriate joke or an unhelpful comment. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked to leave the room while someone else comforted the crier.
  2. If someone has a question about their math homework or what they can and can’t put in the microwave, they come to me. If they have a question about shoes, they go to literally anyone else. Seriously, ask the bum behind the supermarket. Or your drug dealer. They will know better.
  3. I love puns. Bad ones.
  4. If you’re sick, I will take care of you, but the back of mind will always be telling you to suck it up and get back to work.
  5. I don’t like dressing up, have used the term, “kids these days,” and am generally always wondering what all the fuss is about.
  6. I’m very willing to spend my money on other people but when I’m shopping for myself, I am known to utter, “$10? They must be mad!”
  7. I love everything about BBQs. Fourth of July is my favorite holiday.
  8. I probably can’t name more than five songs written in the last five years.
  9. I get really excited about practical or silly gifts. I do not get excited by brand names, cosmetics, or handbags (because I’ve probably never heard of them, I don’t know how to put makeup on, and I don’t like having a bag weighing me down incase I have to run from ne’er-do-wells).
  10. I don’t have great maternal instincts. I’m honestly a little afraid of babies. Why would you put a whole human life in my hands? Have you seen my resume? I’m not even remotely qualified for that. Why can’t we arrange it like when you buy a dog and it’s already weened and has had its shots and won’t die if you go take a bathroom break?
  11. You could call me from jail and I would pick you up, no questions asked, but you would probably feel the weight of my disappointment in the silence of the car ride home.
  12. The only sound advice I am even kind of prepared to offer is career advice.
  13. Out of all of your friends, you will probably be the most embarrassed by me.

Luke, I am your fatherrrrrrrrr.

Who knows? Maybe I’ll be different once a little me comes along, should I ever decide to reproduce. There are plenty of things about me that aren’t dad-like. For starters, I refuse to be productive on weekends and I’m half-convinced the lawn mower wants to eat me. I blame that scene from The Happening. But regardless, if you’re looking for a shoulder to cry on, you’ll probably find mine too boney, if you’re looking for a hug, we’ll have to make it quick, if you’re looking for a babysitter, you probably wouldn’t even think to ask me.

If you’re looking for someone to drink beers in silence with, you know where to find me.


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