My 5-year-old stares at me, not really comprehending what this means. Unless it’s candy or a shot to my balls, he doesn’t have much use for it. But my 11-year-old son, he knows exactly what it means and his face falls. “Dad …” he begins. “No,” I say. “Don’t dad me. Don’t even begin to think I’m changing this. Your mom and I are going to see a movie and your sister is babysitting.” “But …” “No buts.” He looks at me hard, and his lips go tight. But then he accepts it. My wife looks wonderful today. She smiles in a way that she did before we had children. It’s more carefree, … [Read more...]
I killed a thousand butterflies. It's not my proudest moment. It happened right in front of my children, too. Not just my children, but 13 other children as well. Things could have gone better. This past summer in Iowa,dad;s butterflies migrated right through the center of the state. It happened to coincide with my annual "dad's trip." This is the trip my dad's group takes every year so we can build memories with our children. We pick a direction and go. We see the silliest of the silly. Large balls of twine or the world's largest set of overalls. And this time, we killed at least 17% of … [Read more...]
Dads -- stop trying to be mom. There, I've said it. I can hear a whole lot of browsers closing right now, especially those used by you at-home dads. I feel those eyerolls. Who the hell is this guy? Is he trying to piss off everyone? Pretty much. But here's what I mean. Moms are awesome. I have one and I'm married to one. They are good Ford people, salt of the earth women who should be put up on pedestals. They should be celebrated and acknowledged for all the truly heroic things that they do. If you haven't called your mother in a while, then stop reading and do that. Moms worry … [Read more...]
“What exactly do you think you’re doing?” I ask my son at the dinner table. Normally, when such a powerful fatherhood statement like that comes out of my mouth, he’ll freeze. But not today. Today, my boy has decided that it’s time to become a man. He grips the slice of pizza tighter. “Mine,” he says. Such a simple statement but it is as loaded as that slice. He knows this. That’s not something you say to your father and expect to NOT to mow the yard. He doesn’t hand over the beautiful hunk of meat lovers pizza. Instead, he puts it on his plate. It lands with a challenge. “You want to … [Read more...]
“That ball was out of bounds!” I tell my wife sitting next to me on the metal bleachers. My butt hurts, but it’s the price I gladly pay. Did my wife roll her eyes? I think she did. That’s OK, I don’t expect her to get it. Not like me. She isn’t a parent-athlete.
Being a parent-athlete is tough. I go to every practice, sit on those hard metal bleachers and drink copious amounts of Diet Coke from a giant bucket I got from the hardware store. That’s true commitment, and I get it if the rest of the world doesn’t understand. It’s a hard life, but one that has chosen … [Read more...]