I want you to know that I haven’t forgotten about this blog. I think about it. Every day. I’ve written three different things I fully intended on publishing, but didn’t because I wasn’t sure if that’s what I want to write about. They were all perfectly fine pieces. The problem is, I hate perfectly fine. I’d rather it be a crazy mess than perfectly fine. Everything is perfectly fine these days.
I want weird, different, thoughtful and a little crazy. Whatever that is. However; I wanted to bring this subject up. I don’t write about being a dad as much as I used to, but this is cause for thought.
Dads are generally portrayed by the media as bumbling morons who couldn’t possibly pick up the kids and not forget one … or two, wouldn’t know how to boil water and routinely mistake a frozen pizza for delivery. Well, I’m happy to say all that conditioning hasn’t turned Boy #1 into the brainless moron that advertisers and production companies hope for.
He asked the best question I’ve heard in a long time while the whole family was watching the Olympics last week. Another “Thanks Mom” commercial came on and he scrunched up his blond eyebrows and said with a tone of confusion:
“Why do they always show athletes only thanking their moms? No one ever thanks dads and they do just as much … and sometimes more. I don’t get it.”
And there you have it.
This country spends billions singing one tune and leave it to a 12 year old in the ‘burbs to see right through it all. Now, don’t get me wrong; moms are essential, love and do a ton to help their kids. I know a lot of them and even have one who has been nothing but an incredibly supportive rock star for over 40 years. But we all know that. It’s been beaten into us for years after moms were all but ignored decades ago. We see it in ads, sitcoms, on talk shows and Oprah submarined dads for years while propping up moms. We’ve been taught and conditioned that moms love and dads watch the game and go to work.
Times have changed.
While our generation may be stuck in a weird transitional place 1, by in large we’ve stepped up as fathers. We’ve corrected the course of connecting with our kids and have really gotten involved in every aspect of our their lives. As I’ve stated before, this generation of dads is the best the world has ever seen and it’s about time we’re viewed that way. There’s no doubt we need a better P.R. person.
More dads are staying home with the kids, taking half of the duty of raising them and foregoing those long hours at the office to race home to make dinner, coach soccer and sell girl scout cookies.
I have to admit, I smiled with pride when Boy #1 asked that question. Again, it’s the little wins that keep you going and make you realize just maybe you’re doing something right.
Google took a baby step to help this cause with this commercial:
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- More on this later. ↩