Father’s Day: A Day To Bash Dad

Mother’s Day is one of those sacred days where our mothers are nearly deified. We send cards, praise, flowers, gifts, poems, you name it. And it’s understandable; women carry us for 3/4 of a year, then bring us into this world. Then we torture them with nonstop crying (well, of course I didn’t!), late night feedings, and – oh yeah – we irreversibly change some of their bodies forever. For the last reason alone, they should be celebrated on their Special Day.

But for some moms, that isn’t enough.

This past Father’s Day weekend, the social networks were flooded with complimentary dedications to dads everywhere. I don’t mean “fathers”. I mean “DADS”. The guys who made their children feel safe. The guys who made it to recitals – or the ones who sadly missed them in order to take care of their families. The guys who showed up at games and almost got into a fist fight with the coach for benching their kid. These are the guys who laughed at their childrens’ stupid knock-knock jokes, the ones who busted their children smoking/drinking, but shared the cigarette/beer with them instead of screaming at them because he was just that cool.

The examples are endless.

But for some women who didn’t have such mates, they feel that they deserve both days. The father(s) of their child(ren) either took off, or was simply a loser to his family. (I suppose it’s redundant mentioning “men who run out on their families” and “losers” in the same sentence as they are one in the same.)

These women – who are, sadly, growing in number – took to the social networks this Father’s Day weekend to vent. One post literally said, “HAPPY FATHER’S DAY TO ALL THE SINGLE MOMS IN THE WORLD”. Many others were just plain rude. But when I looked closer, I saw a pattern: NONE of these single mothers seemed to take accountability for their actions, and none seemed to consider or care about the impact such comments can have on their child(ren).

I’m willing to assume that most women understand the mechanics of human reproduction. Have unprotected sex with a douche bag, you just may end up with douche’s child(ren). But for one reason or another, his douche-ness didn’t stop her from saying “F*** it – let’s DO IT!” Some more than once. As is often the case with douche bags, they didn’t stick around, or stuck around to beat the crap out of the mother of his children – or worse, the children themselves. Then the moms of douche’s child(ren) decide that venting on social networks for their children and the world to see is the way to go. Bravo.

I have a secret: I get the feeling that it’s a human problem more than a gender problem. I know more than a few men who (knowingly, and therefore stupidly) involved themselves with evil incarnate – women who snoop through their children’s social network pages for info to use against their child’s father, or who simply delete their child’s father without the child’s knowledge or permission, or who deny the fathers of their child(ren) access to their child. Even on Father’s Day. Even by phone. Even if the child wants the contact. I know of a woman who’d actually gotten her daughter to lie to teachers about abuse her father supposedly inflicted on her.

Translation: people suck. PEOPLE suck. Not dads. Not moms. And just as there are great moms who deserve their day to celebrate the great job they did as parents, there are MANY great dads who deserve their day too.

So, ladies, you’ve got 364 days of the year when you can bash your ex. How about letting the REAL dads enjoy Father’s Day, free of reminders of a few of their peers who aren’t as great as they are. Otherwise.. well, you just come off sounding like a douche. Just like your ex.

I’ll leave you with a fun fact: the most collect calls of the year are made on – you guessed it! – Father’s Day.

Yep. The REAL dads have got it great.

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Why I doubt I’ll ever have children

It looks like the powers-that-be in Langley BC have officially lost their minds. And it’s over a single incident.

A couple of 15 year old boys sent lewd messages to a 12 year old girl on Facebook. They also sent pics of their wee-wees to her. She was delighted. All was well, until her idiot mother caught her innocent daughter online in the middle of the night. She was on – you guessed it – Facebook.

So mom loses it, does a bit of sleuthing (you go mom!), and discovers that the original exchange had taken place on school property during school hours! Well, what’s a mom to do, but call the school, demand that they remove access to the site for ALL schools in the district, and annoy the RCMP in to pursuing the matter with the boys’ parents.

This is reminiscent of another mother who caught her 11 year daughter sending and receiving lewd messages, this time via MSN instant messaging. The other party was an 18 year old baseball prospect for a US team. You know the drill: daughter played the ’tearful victim’ card, and mom flipped. (I’d ask where ’dad’ is in all of this, but that’s just wrong.)

The young man was jailed for “sexual coercion of a minor”, until it was discovered that the girl had told him she was 14. The conviction was over-turned on appeal, he went on to play ball in the US (something he wouldn’t have been able to do had he gotten a prison record), and the girl’s mother is probably looking for someone else to blame for why her daughter is on crack today.

I’m only half joking.

Back in the day, these situations would’ve been resolved in a really simple way: kick the kid’s ass. Not physically, but via serious groundings, loss of priviledges, that sort of thing. Then go to the parents of the boys in question and kick their asses. Again, not physically. (Actually, I think I would.) The point IS that there’s no need to make this into more than something that can be resolved between the parties involved.

But this is an era of zero accountability. And no one wants to get their hands dirty. Parents are taking their children out for Hallowe’en in their double-wide strollers (don’t want to give the angels an inferiority complex!), or just as soon as ’little precious’ can walk – even though they’ll have NO recollection of having gone.

These parents either spend more time on social-networking sites than their children, or are completely computer illiterate. The latter of the two couldn’t be bothered to actually check on little Jemma’s and Jayson’s online activities. This is the golden age for pervs, when luring a child from a chat room into reality is as easy as.. blaming somebody else for the crappy job at parenting that you’re doing.

No, there was no internet when I was growing up. But there were still threats and (most of) our parents equipped us as best they could without treating us like God incarnate. I have a newsflash, folks: your children, your special little clones are about as ’special’ and ’unique’ as everybody else’s children.

Think about that… although I already know that you’d rather not. And it’s for this reason and many others that I doubt I’ll ever have children. I care about them too much to bring my own into this world of moronic parents and future narcissists.

The Sad Road To Immortality.

There was an art piece that I’d seen a couple of years back or so. It was a collection of images of dead celebrities, all youngish. Che Guevara was in one. So were Marilyn and James Dean. Of course, Elvis was tossed into the mix as well. If memory serves me correctly, the title of it was “I’m Dead, But At Least I Kept My Good Looks”.

It was meant as a commentary on the cult of celebrity and how huge a part it plays in our every day lives. Even during times of war, famine, you name it. While these folks have long left us, their celebrity lives on and will continue to throughout time. We need them, after all. They remind us of what we could become if we really put our minds to it.

Of course, we would do it all so much differently. We would ‘keep it real’, making sure that our friends would still be our friends. Yeah, we may go to the occasional party/awards show/premiere, but we’d be far more careful about who we’re seen with. And as for the paparazzi, are you kidding me? We’d NEVER let things get that crazy! Yes, we’d still be the normal, everyday people we’ve always been.

With that, we pick up the celebrity gossip rags and proceed to gawk at so-and-so’s HUGE ass, such-and-such’s AWFUL dress/haircut, and what’s-her-name’s bizarre antics following the latest child visitation ruling against her. “If I had that kind of cash, I’d have my own island to retreat to. George Cloony did it! So did Johnny Depp! Why can’t they?!”

For some reason, we choose to forget that these people were probably also “normal, everyday people” at one time. Life just happened to hit them at 300 km/second. A life they may not have been ready for. Some people have better coping skills than others.

You cried over a parking ticket you got.

They cried over not being able to step out of the house without being followed by 25 photographers. Every hour. Every day.

“They can always quit if they don’t like it! Tons of people would DIE to be in their place!” Maybe. And perhaps that’s why some choose to ‘quit’ the easy way.

Take one talented young man, for example, who don’t vie for the limelight. He didn’t make regular appearances at awards shows, nor was he tabloid fodder. From all accounts, he did his best to keep his young family life as private as possible. It looks like his death was accidental, but I still feel for his daughter, about whom he had this to say in his final interview:

“I feel good about dying because I feel alive through her.”

RIP Heath Ledger.

Published in: on January 23, 2008 at 6:09 am  Leave a Comment  

30 Seconds before coming down

There’s this place where I go, sometimes, that reminds me of how immediate life is. It’s not necessarily a physical, tangible place. In fact, depending on the time, the circumstance, and/or the person, it can be many different places.

It’s that place, about thirty seconds before starting to come down from hours of heavy drinking, when you ask yourself “What am I doing?”. Not because you think that what you’re doing is wrong, but just because the question suddenly arises, unsolicited.

Or that moment in the middle of the night, when you’re watching your lover, your child, or even your pet sleep, so still. And you think about how much of a pleasure it is to witness such beauty, such purity. Such a sense of security on their part.

It’s that point where you’re laughing so hard with your friend that for a split second you wonder if and/or hope that you can be friends forever, but at the same time, it doesn’t even matter.

It’s also that time when you’re alone and you wonder how people really see you, what people really think about you… How do you really smell? When you laugh, are they hearing your joy, or do they think you’re just putting it on – just like you’ve secretly accused THEM of doing sometimes?

Do they really like your cooking? Your opinion? Your kiss? After all, you’ve doubted them on a number of occasions, so doesn’t it stand to reason that they may doubt you too? But once again, you remember: does it matter?

It’s in those moments, in those places that I feel truly mortal after all. And the more thankful for the honor. I don’t even care if I’m still here tomorrow.

Published in: on October 9, 2007 at 7:39 am  Leave a Comment