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Father’s Day: Do Dads Ever Get What They Really Want?

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Okay, some of you probably have already opened the box, looked at the tie, and thanked the wife and kids. A similar scene no doubt is played out in many households on Father’s Day. Oh, there can be variations: golf balls, tennis rackets, team clothing, or maybe a new shaving set. All of these things are nice, but are they really what we dads want?

Of course, if you have kids in school they tend to bring home the Father’s Day project. One year my daughter brought home a construction paper tie with her picture on it. Needless to say, that still hangs in my home office on the wall next to my desk. My son made something in pre-school but forgot it on Friday, so I am wondering what it will be (I did have to send a picture of us in to school, so I know that will be involved somehow).

Father’s Day comes at a tough time of year. The retail stores like to publicize “Dads and Grads” in their advertisements, but let’s be clear that Dads get less of the attention. Besides graduations, we have anniversaries and weddings to contend with this month. June is the month of brides more than of their daddies. It is just the way it is.

Mother’s Day comes in May when school is still in full vigor and teachers are more creative. My daughter and son have brought home great Mother’s Day projects (flowers, vases, and picture frames), but by the time we get to the third Sunday in June, the teachers are either out of ideas or running on empty. Mother’s Day gets the most attention (and I’d say deservedly so since I loved my Mom too), but Father’s Day can be a bit neglected sometimes.

So, what do Dad’s really want? I did an unscientific survey among friends. Since the Mets are playing a home game today, that seemed to be the most popular thing: “Go to the game with a friend or alone.” Other things dads wanted included playing golf, going to a movie (again, alone), read the newspaper in peace, or sit out in the yard and have someone else fire up the barbecue.

Now, while all those things sound appealing, I can’t shake the look on my kids’ faces when they give me those little presents. Since it is Father’s Day, how am I supposed to go do something without involving them? How do I not be Dad on Father’s Day? So, as I do every year, I am going to spend time with the kids. I will play with them in the yard, take them to see my Dad, and have a nice lunch with them.

Since there is school tomorrow, I will check my daughter’s homework tonight. I’ll play with my son for a while, and then it will be off to bed. The day will end as all days end around here (whether it’s Father’s Day or not). I suppose that I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Photo Credit: dazzlejunction.com

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About Victor Lana

Victor Lana has published numerous stories, articles, and poems in literary magazines and online. His books In a Dark Time (1994), A Death in Prague (2002), Move (2003), The Savage Quiet September Sun: A Collection of 9/11 Stories (2005) and Like a Passing Shadow (2009) are available online and as e-books. He has won the National Arts Club Award for Poetry, but has concentrated mostly on fiction and non-fiction prose in recent years. He has worked as faculty advisor to school literary magazines and enjoys the creative process as a writer, editor, and collaborator. He has been with Blogcritics since July 2005, has edited many articles, was co-head sports editor with Charley Doherty, and now is a Culture and Society editor. He views Blogcritics as one of most exciting, fresh, and meaningful opportunities in his writing life.
  • Glenn Contrarian

    You know, over the years I’ve come to understand that it’s usually a good thing when men do NOT get what they really want. I mean, hey, given a choice, most men would love to get gift certificates down to the local strip club with free drinks. It’s better to get them what they need – like just the right tools for the item that’s highest priority on the wife’s honey-do list. That way, everybody’s happy, right?