FLASHBACK: It is your third grade Christmas chorus recital. You have been practicing the words to Deck the Halls, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, and all the other classics for weeks but we all know you are just going to get bored halfway through the recital and resort to mouthing the words and staring at the basketball hoop at the opposite side of the gym. You take your place and look out at the crowd (aka bored parents) looking for mom and Dad. You find mom and wave to her, but you cannot find Dad. In fact, you can’t see anyone’s Dad at all; there are no Dads in the crowd. Instead all the Dads have been replaced by cyborg types who have a red light flashing where their eyes should be like Arnold in The Terminator. They are all armed with shoulder mounted video cameras intent on recording every second of your boredom to be remembered forever.
The SMVC was the ultimate weapon of Dad’s to make sure nothing was missed from your childhood. Dad defends it by saying he wants to record everything for when you grow up but you highly doubt the first time you take a changeup to the face in Little League is something you want to remember. When you do want to see your first steps or your second grade “graduation” you have to dig out the old VHS tape the SMVC recorded it on or the VHS adapter that seemed to always eat up the tape when it was used. These tapes always have a problem with showing up when your girlfriend is talking to your Dad and you have to go do something for five minutes. Before you know it Dad is showing your significant other the video of the day you threw up at the carnival from eating three pounds of cotton candy. There goes your dignity.
There is also the Dad practice of putting the lens cap on the SMVC and forgetting to turn off the record button. This leads to the 20 minute intermission of your middle school play being a radio broadcast of him talking to a fellow Dad about the newest Fleetwood Mac album or how they groom their moustache, the SMVC captures it all.
Although I make fun of it now, we all know that when we become Dads we are going to follow in our ancestor’s footsteps and record everything our kid does for their future. We do this because we all know that a Dad’s first obligation is to raise their child right, but their second obligation is to embarrass them as much as possible without really knowing it.