Hello and welcome to a strange new world. You have traveled far through the desert, only to be met time and again by one empty oasis after another. You are lost and alone, wandering, wondering if someone, anyone, knows how you feel. And just when you think you can't go on, and no one could possibly understand your struggle, a hand reaches out to you, lifts you to your feet, and carries you to the promised land. He feeds you knowledge, shelters you from the self-righteous (and the ridiculous), and provides you with the tools you need to survive in this brave new world. You are a stranger in a strange land, but you are not alone. Let him be your guide. Follow closely as you travel together on this adventure of a lifetime. For now, you are a foreigner to "Fatherhood" but soon YOU will be the master of this realm.

"No Man is Expendable!"

This is Fodder 4 Fathers...


As a parenting blogger, I spend a lot of time (a lot of time) combing the Internet for "interesting" content. Some times I find it. More often than not, I don't. And, it's not that I haven't pointed it out before, but I just don't get the on-line parenting magazines? More specifically, I don't understand why women think they know what men want? I don't mind that you call yourself a "parenting"magazine" (well, maybe I do?) when you cater mostly to women, but don't insult me by trying to include "male" content that we all know has been edited, then edited again to appeal to a woman. I expect my male perspectives to be male! When I want a man's opinion, I don't want his wife's (or her Mother's).  And when I go to read a letter from a first-time dad to his unborn child I don't want the goddamn "Vagina Monologues!"

Okay, maybe I'm not the most sensitive person in the world? The youngest of four boys, sensitivity was beaten out of me at an early age. But, it doesn't mean I don't have feelings. I do. And I express those feelings openly and honestly to my wife and baby girl, every day. I show these feelings in a normal, uncontrived, non-romance novel, non-Utopian kind of way. After all, I live in reality, not a freakin' soap opera. So every time I come across some asinine "Letter to my unborn baby" contribution from some so-called "Father Blogger" on one of these so-called "Parenting Magazine" websites I want to find out where the guy lives, run up to his front door, kick him in the nuts and tell him to grow a pair. Well, actually, I want to run up to his door, shoot acid out of my mouth like Seth Brundle in the Jeff Goldblum adaptation of "The Fly" then watch him melt like the Wicked Witch of the West- you whiny, woeful bastard. Did your wife stand over you and dictate while you sold your manhood to the devil? I'm sure the words "I want to guard and protect your heart" really came out of your mouth- sellout.

Look, I understand a man wanting to write a letter to his unborn child. I understand a man working through a myriad of conflicting emotions and wanting to get his thoughts on paper (I do it every day). I even understand a man making a bunch of empty promises to someone he's never met simply to get his wife off his back by showing he's emotionally involved in something that won't really require any work on his part for nine months. What I don't understand is letting Cyrano De Bergerac, the on-line editorial editor, a woman, tell you what to say! "I promise to always be there for you! I will never leave your side. You will never be alone a long as there is a single breath in my lungs... I am your father. Now, and always." (Cue: Puking Sound Effects). It's ridiculous. It takes a woman nine months to grow a baby, but tell some wuss wannabe writer that he's going to be a dad and he grows a vagina in a matter of weeks. You want to make some real promises to your child? Tell the fricken' truth and represent your gender, dammit!

You want to promise your baby something you can possibly live up to? Don't skirt around it, say what's really on your mind...

"Dear Flipper, "My Player to be Named Later":

I know right now you're just a tadpole toiling in the swimming pool I've peed in a time or two, but I just wanted to drop you a line to say "hey" and set out some ground rules for the day you destroy the catcher's mitt I've been perfectly working in for the last several years as you make your final descent in to my domain. I've decided to do you the simple favor of not being the first face that you see when you enter the world, because, let's face it, if I'm forced to watch you can be pretty sure that image will be burned in to my memory and may thwart your chances of ever having siblings. I'm sure we will be fast friends, as I'm a likable kind of guy, but let's just take it day by day and see where it goes from there. I don't throw the word love around lightly, so let's not be rash - we should get to know each other first. I'm a Libra. I like walks on the beach, and Leslie Neilson films (no wait, that was my on-line dating profile)... Anyway, I'm told I'm supposed to make you some promises here, so this is what I propose: I, your father, the guy who just last week was playing X-box hockey until 3 a.m. but is now turning his own playroom in to yours, promises to do these ten things (in no particular order):

1) I promise to pay your bills until such time that you can pay your own (somewhere in your teens). This includes rent, clothing, food, entertainment, after school activities, and any waxing, rhinoplasty or orthodontic work you may require do to my ethnic genes.
2) I promise to let you live in my house rent free until your mid-twenties when your room will be turned in to a gym that I will never use, so don't even think of coming home from college without a j.o.b. or you'll be s.o.l.
3) I promise to pay for your college education with the 20 years of compound interest I'll be getting from diversifying all of your birthday, holiday and piggy bank money in to several different portfolios.
4) I promise to buy you toys that I think are cool and enroll you in activities that I want you to partake in because I can, and because if I have to watch you ankle bite or run aimlessly down a court or field I want to be able to at least dream of being able to watch you play one day in Madison Square Garden.
5) I promise to go to every dance recital- but only if you wake me up for your specific segment.

"Let's Shake On It!"
6) I promise to help you with your homework by reading it over... and then calling for your Mom.
7) I promise to give you all the things I never had, but seeing as technology moves faster than the speed of light these days, that's a pretty easy promise to keep.
8) I promise to keep my bedroom door locked every Sunday night so your Mom and I can play our own version of "Go fish" without scarring you for life, as long as you leave your bedroom door open at all times so that (when you're a teenager) I can be sure you won't be playing the same game with the neighbour's kid.
9) I promise to be fair, just, and ethical in my treatment of you, but don't think that will save you from having to pose for lousy school pictures, having to kiss your aunt Enid (yes, she has a mustache, but at least electrolosis got rid of the soul patch), or having me kiss you everytime I drop you off at school.
And, 10) I promise to allow you to make your own choices- like which horse to finish in the third race."

See? Honest, to the point, and estrogen free.  Is that so hard?

Disclaimer: This blog post is for entertainment purposes only. It does not constitute an expert opinion nor does it assume any liability for how it is otherwise interpreted. It is not our intention to offend but rather to bring to light important issues affecting new parents for discussion. No harm was intended by this post, it's author, or Fodder 4 Fathers.

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