I repeat: Your children have not been invaded by aliens — it’s just Father’s Day

(For the second week in a row, I am utilizing the power of Flashback Sunday to stay ahead of the space-time continuum and avoid actually being late on my post by convincing you, the reader, that Stephen Hawking says my columns are like a black hole, devoid of the confines of time, space and, as he put it, “Any actual content.” So journey with me now back to 2004, back when I thought Freshly Pressed was prison jargon for a white collar criminal who is added to the general population…

And in all sincerity to you Dads out there: Happy Father’s Day.)

image As any father will tell you, today is a very special day. That’s because it allows you to see what it would be like if your children came from another planet. On Father’s Day, children are required (And I’m pretty sure this is an actual law) to do things they would otherwise only do if there was some serious chocolate involved.

It is essentially a day similar to how you envisioned each day would be, back before you actually HAD children; back before reality set in, and you came to realize that, although insanity didn’t previously run in your family, there was a good chance it would be starting with you.

For example, on Fathers’ Day, there’s always enough hot water for my shower. That means plenty of time to wash-up, shave, and even get the mirror foggy so that, by squinting really hard, I sort of look like George Clooney in the shower, squinting really hard.

That’s on Fathers’ Day.

On normal days, the hot water lasts just long enough for me to realize that, in the time it takes for me to squint, I’m ALREADY OUT OF HOT WATER.

This is because I usually take a shower after my daughter, who, at age nine, defies the natural laws of physics by requiring close to 700 gallons of hot water to wash a surface area equal to three fruit roll-ups. Though I’ve tried to explain to her that most sea mammals get by on less water in their entire lifetime than she consumes in a single shower, she only listens to me one day a year.

Which brings us to Fathers’ Day rule number two: Children actually listen to Dad the first time he says something.

Again, this goes back to those early dreams of fatherhood, when a raised brow was all that you’d need to bring order out of chaos. In reality, of course, that raised brow has now become part of a nervous tick that is a direct result of repeating yourself so many times that you’ve begun to sound like Dustin Hoffman in Rainman.

But this isn’t the case on Fathers’ Day. That’s right; when we go out to breakfast, my children will listen the very first time I tell them to stop eating sugar packets — at which point they will, instead, politely begin consuming Crayons, place mats and/or whatever happens to be stuck under the table.

I think it’s important to note that what makes Fathers’ Day different from Mothers’ Day is that, for women, the transition into parenthood is easier. That’s because, like a lot of women, they have prepared themselves for dealing with children by, well…

Being married to men.

In a way, today is about children expressing their love and appreciation for their fathers by trying to be on their best behavior. It’s a day filled with attentive faces, quiet voices, good manners and no squabbling.

To be honest, I’m glad it only happens once a year. Otherwise I’d go insane.

I love you, kids.

And that’s definitely worth repeating.

(Ned is a syndicated columnist with News Media Corporation. You can write to him at nhickson@thesiuslawnews.com, or at Siuslaw News, P.O. Box 10, Florence, Ore. 97439)

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Ned's Blog

I was a journalist, humor columnist, writer and editor at Siuslaw News for 23 years. The next chapter in my own writer’s journey is helping other writers prepare their manuscript for the road ahead. I'm married to the perfect woman, have four great kids, and a tenuous grip on my sanity...

21 thoughts on “I repeat: Your children have not been invaded by aliens — it’s just Father’s Day”

  1. Thanks you much for the fine article of wich much information I have been needing is inside of. I will be sure to pay much visits and atention to all future articles of such good information. Keep up with the good hard work. And speaking of hard, I have for selling some magic pills that will make you like a tree in your soft areas. Only fifty glabotniks for a bottle that will give you much happy pants for a long time.

    1. I truly did; one of the nicest. Great breakfast at home, some “three-flies-up” with the family in the afternoon, dinner at my favorite Mexican restaurant, and then the new Star Trek movie. Definitely a day worth repeating 😉

      1. When my husband met me ten years ago I weighed 98lbs. and was swimming around in size zeros. So on second thought, no fruit leather for this chicky. I don’t ever wanna be that sad and miserable again!!

        1. That DOES sound miserable. Personally, I’ve always preferred a woman with some substance. Maybe you can strike a compromise and just wear the fruit leather. You know, like chaps!

          1. The sadness and misery (oh woe!!) came from sources other than abject thinness, but fruit leather chaps would have been a consolation prize of sorts. Disgusted with myself for not thinking of it!

            1. Don’t beat yourself up, about the misery source or not thinking of the chaps. I have previous experience with both, although I suspect I had a bit of an advantage in thinking of the chaps 😉

              1. Yes, I suspect — can’t imagine why. The misery source was out of my hands, so no beating myself up over it. (None of this belongs in a humor column, so I’ll just say it really fast. I lost my father-in-law, my dad, and my husband of 35 years in an 8-month period. And I moved. Off the charts. Nearly died of grief anorexia.) Okay, say something funny, Ned — get us back on track!!!

                1. I have to say, Judy, any attempt by me to say something funny would come off as trying to over compensate for something very sad. I only resort to when speaking about my anatomy… 😉

  2. I have a 17 year old daughter, so I feel your pain when it comes to sharing the shower (wait, I think I need to reword that…. naaaaa). One of the nice things about summertime is that I don’t have to take BCD showers (butt crack of dawn). I can actually sleep past 5 in the morning.

    1. Thanks for sharing my pain, and for clarifying that opening statement [LMAO]. Our youngest daughter (12), just started showering in the morning as well, which makes three females in the shower each morning. As a result, I have shifted mine to January.

      1. Ahhhh, so you also know the teenage daughter rule, which is that she will sleep in on a Saturday until just before you come home soaked with sweat, where she will then take a two hour shower while you wilt in the hall outside the bathroom door.

        1. Yes, usually while simultaneously needing to pee, which seems a contradiction — or cruel irony — considering there is no liquid left anywhere else inside my body other than in my bladder.

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