This year Father's Day lands on my birthday, which should, of course, mean Double Presents. But it never will. Sure, make a "big deal" about it by leaving little reminders around the house two months in advance and you're suddenly being "annoying." Apparently the following helpful reminders were "stupid":
- Like on grocery lists: "Eggs, milk, beer, pie, AND plenty of birthday and Father's Day gifts for Dad because he's so wonderful! Also, beer. We're out of beer. We're not actually, 'out' out, but there's only one left. Well, one case. Of 24. So we're basically out."
Written on pancakes in whipped cream: "Multiple pancakes today? Wow, somebody must think you're pretty great. Don't forget multiple PRESENTS for the oldest male in the house on BirthFather's Day!"
- Casually leaving around lists of items that have been registered at Home Depot and Sharper Image.
- Flowers sent to your wife: with the card reading, "You deserve these dozen flowers of whatever the flower lady picked out, not that I expect the equivalent number in presents for Birth/Father's Day or anything. Ha ha! But seriously, I do."
- On birthday cards to other family members that you mailed from work: "Happy Birthday Child #2! It's not your birthday? Oh. That's right. Hey, don't forget that your Dad's birthday is also on Father's Day! Your mom should probably buy him multiple presents, like no fewer than six! It would sure help if you could read this, so how's about getting on that?"
A woman's birthday could fall on Flag Day, and she'd expect a birthday present AND Flag Day present, preferably in the form of a flag, which is stuck inside a cupcake that's resting in the cup holder of her brand new Mercedes.
For some reason cologne is some kind of a traditional gift for dads. Because nothing says, "You're great!" like cologne. You're basically saying, "As far as father's go, you could smell better. This would be doing every around here a huge favor." Which is why, come June, I start wearing a pine tree car air freshener around my neck and walking around the house shouting, "Doesn't dad smell great?!" It's very subtle.
Here are some perfectly reasonable Father's Day gift ideas so you don't disappoint the Man of the House:
- A new phone to replace his new phone that never rings except to notify him 24-hours in advance of his next tee time.
- Never having to mow the lawn again. I often see women elderly women mowing their yards. If you don't want to do it, fine; the 10-month-old boy eats everything in site. Let's just fence him in the yard and let him graze. I don't know why I didn't think about this earlier. Maybe he'll find a dinosaur fossil.
- A bunch of meat. Like a cooler full. Not a tiny cooler, either. One of those coolers morgues keep bodies in. The animal doesn't matter much, the fattier and more exotic the better. There's nothing Dad would like more than a tiger burger. Or anything endangered.
- A new chainsaw. For chainsawing. Never mind if he doesn't have anything to chainsaw. He'll find something and will at no time wake you up with it wearing a ski mask. That'd be childish.
- A new grill. For the meat you purchased him. You may wonder "How many BTUs should I get?" Put it this way, BTUs to a man are like shoes to a woman: you can never have too many.
Incidentally, for every tie or polo he receives (that he convincingly appreciates while secretly thinking "whatever"), he can exchange for one guilt-free round of golf or two "mulligans" of stupid things he said and can take back without any residual anger.
Kelly Van De Walle is the senior creative & marketing writer for Briscoe14 Communications (www.briscoe14.com). He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or via a thoughtful message written on a Post-it attached to one of his two new iPods he's sure to be receiving. Follow Kelly on Twitter @pancake_bunny for other holiday gift-giving advice.