If you based your opinion of dad on the way he's portrayed on televison and in the movies, you're drinking the Kool Aid. Everywhere you look, he's, erroneously portrayed as an inept, clueless, nincompoop whose survival is thanks to super mom and/or a wiseass tyke. If you buy into that, you must wonder how he earns the money that puts a roof over your head, puts food on the table and clothes on your back.
Who taught you to drive the family car? Dad.
Who showed you how to swing a baseball bat? Dad.
Who taught you to ride a bike? Dad.
Who taught you how to fish? Dad.
Who took you to your first pro football and/or baseball game? Dad.
Who walked you down the aisle? Dad.
Dad did all that and much more. He was/is there for you when you needed it.
Still not convinced? Okay, ponder this: if dad is such a moron, why are all those basement boys living in mom's basement? MOM's basement, not dad's basement.
Some Real Dads
* One night, I watched a superb example of fatherhood on a cable channel. It involved a dad who was helping his middle school aged son, modify one of those munchkin size motorcycles. The essential element in this story is that dad isn't a gearhead. When it came to auto mechanics, working on cars, trucks or motorcycles he didn't have a clue. Furthermore, he isn't up to speed on things like welding, and assorted other relevant skills.
Dad proved he had the right stuff by helping his son research the various tasks needed for the project. He helped his son by hooking him up with a cycle wrangler who taught the lad how to weld. Dad found a machinist who showed the lad the finer points of metal fabrication. In other words, dad and son learned the various skills needed to modify the lad's ride, together. Dad didn't try to buy his son a customized ride, because he knew it would be better to let his son do it for himself. He allowed his son to succeed or fail so he could learn the essential life lessons from the attempt. It was an example of parenting at its best.
* A friend of mine scares the crap out of local Educrats. Why? He's a passionate, outspoken, defender of his sons' right to a proper education. He's the Educrat's worst nightmare: a rational individual who won't be silenced, and rejects the usual Educrap bull crap. His sons are lucky to have a great dad.
* This real dad lived across the street, so I had a front row seat. He gave me one of the biggest laughs of my life, the morning after his wenchlet daughter's first slumber party. Utterly shattered by a night jam packed with girlish high spirits, he was, to say the least, a wreck.
Baby girl was palpably smug over the number she and her wenchlet hellions had done on dear old dad. She demonstrated for dear old dad, one of Hambo's unwritten laws: a lot things will happen during a wenchlet slumber party, but sleeping isn't one of them.
If your neighbor is headed for a similar reality check, do whatever it takes to be up and about, the morning after. I'm just sayin'.
* The real dad I know best is my own. My dad passed a while back, but I still have numerous fond memories of him.
Memory 1: Great Balls of Fire
I made a vivid impression - not to mention a lasting mark on him - when I was a mere rugrat. He was outside doing something with a blowtorch, so I decided to help him. How? Armed with a stick, I ignored his warnings and waved it in the flame.
The good news is that his mustache and eyebrows grew back.
The bad news is that the spanking he gave me removed 'sitting' from my options for a few days.
Memory 2: Fan Wars
During the Summer, my mother liked to run a fan at night. My dad was differently enthusiastic about 'that damned fan'. The sequence went like this:
She turns the fan on and falls asleep.
He gets up and turns it off then he falls asleep.
She wakes up, turns it on again, then goes back to sleep.
He wakes up, turns it off and goes back to sleep.
It goes on like that all night long.
BUT, the best is yet to come. The next morning, he complains that, because "she ran the fan all night, there wasn't enough electricity to heat the water for his coffee.
Did he think we were powered by batteries?
Memory 3: Gift Wars
My dad initiated this one, when he bought my mom something she didn't need, didn't want, and had no intention of using, for Christmas. Touting it as her extra special, personal, present, he gave her a DEEP FRYER. She was so unamused it can't be quantified.
The next year, she upped the ante, when it came to HIS personal, extra special, present. She gave him SOD for the front lawn. BUT, this wasn't just any sod, it was the kind of grass that's used on golf greens. It looked awesome - he got to put it in, of course - but it was VERY high maintenance, since it required a special lawnmower. Also, any blemish - be it a weed or an ant hill, stood out like a sore thumb.
From there, the gift war escalated, but I missed most of it, since I was out of the house and on my own, by then.
Memory 4: Eavesdropping
My Aunt and Uncle came to visit, so mom and dad were sleeping in the bedroom in the basement. After dad went downstairs, we were all chatting at the kitchen table, right next to the stairway. I don't know what we were saying, but it must have been about him, because mom said, "He's probably downstairs listening to us."
An instant later, from the bowels of the basement, his indignant voice filled the stairwell: "I AM NOT!"
We cracked up, of course, and, being a good sport, my dad laughed too.
Memory 5: Family Road Trips
By far, my fondest - in retrospect of course - memories of my dad involve our regular family road trips, with my dad at the wheel. His driving skills were first rate. Unhappily, his navigation skills left something to be desired. That's because, his rules of road warrior engagement were simple: "Trust me, I know what I'm doing."
When he was at the wheel, there were certain givens:
* Despite the fact that your bladder was the size of Jupiter, my dad resisted the urge to make a pit stop. His excuses were variations on the same theme: "I don't like the looks of that one." I don't give a damn if it looks like the Black Hole of Calcutta. When you gotta go, beggers can't be choosers.
The closest he came to an untimely demise was when he tried that crap on my lovely bride. Her death threats were, to say the least, impressive. She had almost resolved the 'strangle him or just shoot him' issue, when he made that life saving pit stop. He never knew how close he came to becoming a crime statistic. Call me names if you must, but it was a clear case of justifiable homicide.
* He was obsessed with beating his personal driving record to a given destination. This one played out in a number of ways, the primary one being 'the new shortcut'. The moment he deviated from the well traveled path, you could bet the proverbial agriculture endeavor that you were about to boldly go where you'd never gone before.
These shortcuts never failed to get my dad severely lost, a condition that he steadfastly denied. When we finally emerged, hours later, to hell and gone from our alleged destination, he would smile at my mom and say, "I knew where I was the entire time." It's not the kind of thing you say to a red-headed woman whose whole family is populated by legendary exploders.
I will, grudgingly, admit, that, despite his pathological hatred of pit stops and his proclivity for getting amazingly lost, my dad always got us there safely, and - according to his reality-challenged time keeping - he always beat his old record. I will also admit that there was an undeniable aura of adventure, when he decided to save time, by traveling on roads that even the hardiest local avoided at all costs. Hell, some of the places we visited don't appear on any map. Trying to find them would give Google Earth a nervous breakdown.
Memory 6: Wetting a line
Every Summer, when I was a kid, we'd spend quality time at my grandad's cottages in Michigan. Many mornings, dad, my uncles, cousins and I would get up early to try our luck at a nearby fishing spot. It was, upon reflection, very relaxing and very enjoyable. The best part of those days was the ensuing fish fry. Fresh perch, bass and sun fish. Yum!
I know it's early, but I wanted, needed, to give him his due.
He was a great guy and I still miss him.
Happy Father's Day, dad.
"My daddy said."
Make no mistake, dad, your kids hear what you say. They can and will quote you.
Thanks to Korrectniks, activists and other pests, fatherhood, which has always been action packed, keeps getting more daunting. Here are a couple Korrectnik inspired 'my daddy said' moments:
• Your wenchlet daughter throws you this curve ball, "Daddy, why is that strange boy, Tommy Wilson, allowed to use the girl's bathroom? Teacher called it something silly...trans something."
"That's it, what does it mean daddy?"
By all means, field that one daddy, but remember that inconvenient truth. Whatever you tell her will be repeated at school, so something real like "Tommy has always been a twisted little twerp" or "Like his daddy, Tommy likes to pretend he's a girl" won't cut it. Welcome to the wonderful world of 'my daddy said', dude.
• Your son looks at his Little League trophy then drops it in the trash can, asking, "Why does everyone get a trophy? Even Ruben got one and he can't even walk to first base without falling down.
Your move dad.
"Little League is stupid. They won't let us keep score and nobody ever wins. What's the point?"
I'm reasonably certain that getting real with "Little League is run by a bunch of lefties who have their heads up their ass." is begging for 'my daddy said' drama.
A Few Stray Notions
• Whenever possible, inject some PIGish fun into your daddy duties.
• Encourage Moonbeam and Little Johnny to use the term 'cess-school' and wait for that note from the relevant Educrat.
• Use the PIG Primer to teach your rugrat their ABCs. A gem like "G is for GLAAD BAAGS" is ticking time bomb ready to thrill some unsuspecting Progtard spitless.
• Add a generous dose of PIGisms to your children's vocabulary, then sit back and wait for some unsuspecting lib to set one off.
• If Moonbeam introduces you to her Goth BFF, think twice before you mouth off. Goth wenchlets tend to be bad ass. You probably don't want to go there.
• If you're a Bill Engvall fan you're locked and loaded for that 'I've got no problem going back to prison' encounter with Moonbeam's new boyfriend.
• If you get one of those cliche ugly ties - or sweater - on Fathers Day, again, don't just suffer in silence. Wipe that smirk off your lovely bride's face by wearing it to the next gathering of her family, or to church.
Happy fathers day, dads. We the PIGs salute you.