By Greg Hall
Mother’s Day is the biggest day of the year for restaurants and means handmade cards covered in poster paint and crooked clay planters. But what do we hear about Father’s Day? Please, please, PLEASE not another tie.
The experts tell us that the ideal household has a figure that possesses the great attributes of a mother and a father (and I am not going to get into gender, because I don’t think that enters into it at all). So why is it all right for “Father’s Day” to be boiled down to a tired cliché?
News flash: Fathers don’t want another tie. The tie of old represented a middle-class expectation that we had to have a decent office job to provide well for our family. We are taught to be MEN - not to have “feels” that make us all soft and gooey. We don’t need some school-made art project on our desks, right? We need the space for the 8 million reports still to be written. Hey, you know what? Dads do want a handmade drink coaster or a cardboard picture frame with puffy stickers. We will make space!
Honestly, I think most dads would be happy if you gave them exclusive control of the television remote control for the day and don’t wake them up from a nap in the recliner. What is it about kids when they see their father’s eyes are closed?.
This might give you the idea that men don’t love our families. That’s not it. As a father for the last fifteen years, I wish I could show the emotion that my wife does towards the kids. The emotions are there, they just have a hard, shiny veneer on them.
The best sleep for any dad is when he knows the wife and kids are home, safe in their beds. Just leave me the remote.
Greg Hall teaches 6th grade English in Owosso, Michigan. He loves “Doctor Who” and a good laugh. You rarely see Greg without a book in his hand, but he enjoys swimming and bike rides with his kids.
This was printed in the October 16, 2016 - October 29, 2016 edition.