Article first published as Father's Day: Do Dads Ever Get What They Really Want?< on Blogcritics.
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