Thursday, December 27, 2012

#118 Not Knowing What He Got You for Christmas:

It is two days after Christmas, so by now you’ve already broken at least half of your toys and stained 3 of you brand new shirts. I wish New Year’s came with gifts. The remaining gifts are either durable or require an exchange, so it is time to pester Dad for a ride to the mall. The conversation usually goes a little something like this:

“Daaaad…will you take me to the mall?”
“What for? You just got a ton of gifts!”
“I have to exchange this shirt.”
“That’s a great shirt though! Did Grandma get it for you?”
“No—you did.”

That is when you realize Dad has no idea what he got you for Christmas. So that’s why you got the R rated movies and Slim Shady LP with Parental Advisory sticker. We know Dad is an advocate of the list, but to follow it entirely without knowledge of what he is getting is pretty impressive. The salesman at Target even threw in the see-through purple N64 controller because he knew you’d want it.

The other classic move is that Dad has no idea what size you are for clothing. While Santa knows your size because he watches you when you’re sleeping or awake, Dad takes a guess because “you grow faster by the minute.” It becomes clear that Mom bought you the shirts. It’s even clearer as you witness Dad not even dressing himself as mother returns with fresh clothing for him every so often.
So let that be a lesson to kids for future years: be very precise with what you want. If you want Heelys, you better be specific, otherwise you’ll end up with the new Skechers Shape Ups that match Mom’s pair.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

#117: The Christmas Sweater

It's the most wonderful time of the year. Snow is falling, malls are packed, egg nog is being chugged, and college football bowl games are on every single night. It's Christmas time! And as we all know, Dad has something special on deck. No it's not Terribly Wrapped Gifts or even The Santa Hat, it is something much more hideous and awesome. It is that article of clothing we all love to hate: the Christmas Sweater.

If you are one of our five fans, you know Dads love their sweaters. From Out of Date College Sweatshirts to Sweater Vests and everything in between, Dads true trademark are his ridiculous clothes that contain the word "Sweat". But the Christmas Sweater stands above them all. It can only be worn Post-Thanksgiving to 11:59PM on Dec. 25th. That truncated schedule means it needs to be worn frequently to get maximum usage. It will be seen at family gatherings, office parties, fridays at the office, elementary school chorus recitals, and holiday basketball/wrestling tournaments. The rule of thumb is if it is holiday time and a Shoulder Mounted Video Camera is present, there is ALWAYS a Christmas Sweater present. It is more consistent that Newton's Laws of Motion.

And of course, these sweaters are anything but attractive. They usually are a thick wool material with Santas, penguins, elves, reindeer, Christmas trees, wrapped gifts, and other holiday riff-raff smothered all over the sweater in no particular fashion. Some show an actual holiday scene, like carolers, that would look terrible framed on one's wall except now it is stretched and distorted over Dad's enormous gut. Some have little balls of yarn stitched to them to give that special 3D effect. It is not a true Christmas Sweater unless Bill Cosby would look at it and say, "That thing is ridiculous." That is when you know you have a winner.

So sit back and enjoy this most special time. Eat and drink plenty, take a little and give a lot, listen to Grandpa's inadvertently racist story of old times, intimidate your cousin's new boyfriend she brought to dinner, and be sure to help Aunt Edna to her car after her eighth martini. But most importantly, be sure to revel and be in awe of the vibe Dad's Christmas Sweater emits during this most wonderful time. Because come January winter just sucks.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

#116 Bran Cereal

IT’S SATURDAY MORNING!!! TIME FOR CARTOONS, PAJAMAS AND SUGARY CEREAL UNTIL YOU THROW UP! This moment makes all the teachers’ dirty looks worth it. As you slide into the kitchen pantry, you can’t decide whether to eat Lucky Charms or Cap’n Crunch. Both have nutritional value, and both are advertised by your favorite cartoon characters. That’s when disaster strikes and all you see in the pantry is a box of whole grain bran cereal: Dad’s cereal. 

As much as Dad loves succulent flavor involved for his steaks and Sunday morning breakfasts, Dad hates taste in the morning. Dad’s goal for the morning is to choke down enough coffee  so he isn’t a zombie and enough bran cereal so that he can disappear into the bathroom for 20-30 minutes before work. Something to do with Fiber?
Dad once tricked you into trying a bowl of his bran cereal, claiming that all cereals are the same. No. Not all cereals taste like cardboard. Dad tries to compromise by buying Raisin Bran, but you won’t fall for that one. Raisins do not disguise cardboard. And you can barely choke down a bowl of plain Cheerios without at least 3 cups of sugar. To make matters worse, Dad buys off brand bran cereal. Dad won’t even shell out for Kellogg’s or Fiber One, instead opting for Arrowhead Mills “because it’s organic!”

 The crunch of bran cereal is the worst. How can Dad read the newspaper in the morning with the sound of jackhammers in his mouth. You may chew with your mouth open, but at least its quieter than Dad’s bran cereal. What is bran even made of—nails? So while Dad strolls into the kitchen to help himself to a hearty bowl and offers you some, you slyly move to the toaster. “No thanks Dad, I’ll just have some Pop-tarts with my cartoons.” Still a solid Saturday morning.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

#115 Classic Dad: Rick Kaepernick

There are many of you who are wondering, who the heck is Rick Kaepernick and how does he deserve to be in the That's So Dad Hall of Fame? It is home to the likes of Clark W. Griswold, Hank Hill,  and Homer Simpson. It's more exclusive than the Skull and Bones and the College of Cardinals combined. But the staff here at TSD know when to recognize greatness and Rick is a legendary Dad. An instant classic. Our main evidence comes from the links below:

Rick Kaepernick Evidence for TSD HOF

Rick is the father of Colin Kaepernick, the newly annointed starting quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers. Of course Rick is proud of his son, he has achieved every father's dream of raising a professional athlete in a very masculine sport. Rick is VERY fond of twitter, and from the beginning his account reeks of Dadness. His handle is @QBDAD7 (7 is his son's number). If that doesn't make a modern Dad, I don't know what does. Now I am not one to ever go on twitter (unlike my TSD counterpart), but I think Rick's account will increase the number of Twitters I look at to 2, Bubba Watson being the other. Rick's Twitter profile pic (Twitpic?) is freakin Barney Fife from The Andy Griffith Show. Nothing is more Dad than memorializing shows from the apex of the Cold War era. I only know about the show because of my own Dad.

Rick's tweets are a barrage of Dadness: talking to fans wishing his son luck, talking about how his son (4.53 sec 40yd time) wishes he was as fast as him, posting childhood pics of Colin, and many many pictures of the family pet...which is a tortoise...named Sammy...He makes jokes where he says Sammy can play for some lineman if needed, which are followed by pictures of the reptile with a 49ers helmet on his shell. Rick ends tweets "from Sammy" with #heismissingyou. What a cool Dad.

Even though Rick is on Twitter a lot, like all real Dads he has no idea how to really use Twitter. He cuts off tweets, only to "fix" the problem by reposting the same mistaken tweet. He has four consecutive tweets where he is trying to Tweet at someone, clearly screwing up each time. Lastly, he sometimes signs his tweets like it's a letter, which is incredible.

All in all, Rick Kaepernick is a Dad we can all relate to. Proud of his son, doesn't get modern tech, uses pop culture from the 60s, it is all there. On top of it he has probably the most Dad job ever: VP of Operations for Hilmar Cheese Company. That's right, Rick is in the cheese industry. No wonder he is so cheesy...