Sunday, June 15, 2014

Stiff the old man again.

Being a father is a serious job, one that neither society, families, or, sadly, a lot of dads respect. Society likes to say that Dad is a dictatorial crank, a borderline psychopath, a neglectful tool, a self-centered dodo, a doddering fool, an out-of-touch creep, or a bumbling idiot. Dads in TV commercials? Idiots. Dads on TV shows dramas? Creeps.

The dad that Hollywood likes best is one who, like Odysseus, abandons his family for twenty years and comes roaring in at the end to save everybody. But the dad that sticks to his last, providing and instructing and protecting, day in and day out? He's an idiot. Or a psychopath.

Moms sometimes act like dad is an idiot too---not that he may not be; Lord knows dads can be idiots same as anyone else. But sometimes moms like to think they do it all even when they don't, that dads are detached and dopey. Maybe moms watch too many TV commercials.

Today is Father's Day, so you'd better run to the store fast unless you want to stiff the old man again. They'll be out of #1 Dad mugs by now, but you may find something.

If you're desperate you can always copy and print out my "Ode to Dad," below. No need to hit the tip jar. Your appreciation is enough. And the best way to show that appreciation is to buy a few thousand copies of my books.

"Ode to Dad"

Every kid should have a dad
That's decent, kind, and strong
A dad who does not walk the streets
Clad in a pink sarong

I know my dad is really great
I think that he's the tops
That's why I'm not ashamed to say
"Hey, this guy is my pops"

You put up with an awful lot
We give you lots of grief
The baby screams and hollers
And the dog bites with his teef

You work a lousy job all day
Your boss will whine and moan
No doubt the man has also got
A family of his own

You try to show us right from wrong
Though Mom says you're a dolt
But since she went and married you
It's no one else's folt

You know I'm only ribbing you
We all think that you're full a
All the greatness dads can have
But pink is not your color

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