Gender Specific Children Like Gender Specific Books

I’m frankly baffled by the pronouncement by Katy Guest, literary editor for the UK Independent newspaper, that The Independent on Sunday will no longer promote any books that are “marketed to exclude either sex.” Go, read what she says: We’re Done with Gender Specific Books. She is concerned that boys like “adventure books with thin action-based plots” and that girls like “boring princesses”, and while I concur that there are fewer well written children’s books…Read More

Talking Divorce, Fatherhood and Suicide with Dr. Rich Mahogany

I attended a talk from the Colorado Office of Suicide Prevention at the Stay At Home Dads Conference in Denver and was shocked by the suicide stats for fathers. I wrote about it a while back – Men and Suicide –but after trying for months, finally got a chance to interview Dr. Rich Mahogany. Hold on, though: Rich is a fake therapist, the creation of the Man Therapy partners, but with its generous dose of…Read More

The Mother of All Sleepovers

It was supposed to be an easy evening, where my son G- (13) would be at his friend’s house for the night while the girls and their friends would have a sleepover at my place. Two 17yo girls and two 10yo girls. I had two movies teed up, My Fair Lady for everyone, then, when the younger two went upstairs to bed, Rush for the 17yo’s and myself. Audrey Hepburn and Rex Harrison for everyone…Read More

A Weekend in New Orleans at the Dad 2.0 Summit

I’ve only just gotten back from New Orleans, Louisiana having attended the terrific Dad 2.0 Summit for the third year in a row. I’ve written about the conference before, but I’ll say again, it’s the only conference I’ve ever attended where it nurtures my heart rather than feeding my brain. Which isn’t to say that there’s not a lot to learn, but when I compare it to my other favorite conference, CES 2014, the differences…Read More

Dad Bashing in Monsanto’s America’s Farmers Superbowl Ad

First off, watch the “Begins With a Farmer” Monsanto advertisement that aired during the 2014 Superbowl: Now, let’s talk about this ad because I think it’s awful and also rather confusing both. Awful because there are some inaccuracies and some really frustrating positioning of the male/female roles in a farm, and confusing because there are some puzzles, like why show two different farms in two different states if there are no differentiators between them? The…Read More

Another Trade Show, Another Missed Birthday

I honestly have no idea what we were thinking when my youngest was born the second week of January. Every year I attend the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas and just about every single time her birthday lands during the middle of the show. While I’m in Las Vegas at the most important trade event of the year. This year was no different, of course, and it was during the third day of this…Read More

Dads in Films: “The Croods”

Every once in a proverbial blue moon I see a film where the father role is interesting or realistic, instead of us dads being perpetually portrayed as buffoons or the extra child in the family dynamic. Have I mentioned recently how much I hate that and how I hate that it’s just accepted in society that boys rarely transition to manhood and when they do, babies push them back down the evolutionary ladder? Now to…Read More

A Discussion on The Diversity of Fatherhood

We Dads are all the same, right? I mean, there’s not much diversity between us, we all have a wife who does much of the work of parenting while we work, hang out with our mates and watch football. Occasionally we interact with our spawn, but begrudge the experience. No? That seems to the prevalent view of TV script writers and commercial producers, at least. But it’s completely false. For every guy like that, there…Read More

Kids and Casinos, the Weirdness of Las Vegas

My kids are fascinated by Las Vegas. The photos show an amazing place with tons of neon, buildings as garish and crazy as you can possibly imagine, and the entire sea of humanity cascading off the sidewalks in a concrete oasis in the Western desert. It’s shiny, it’s alluring, and there’s an energy here that’s hard to describe if you haven’t been to what is both the most electric and perhaps the most crass and…Read More

Present To My Son: The Gentleman’s Dating Kit

As my 13yo son has moved into adolescence a new world has opened up to him, a world that I am finding interesting to watch vicariously: dating. As with so many things in parenting, it’s extraordinarily easy to watch from a distance and offer insightful advice based on years of wisdom that’s then promptly ignored as the child continues to proceed as they think is best. Way less embarrassing for them. And at 13, G-…Read More

I’m in the Dads Club member spotlight!

This is pretty sweet: Dad’s Club, a spin-off of the National Fatherhood Initiative, picked me as their Dad of the Month (I guess that’s what it’s called) and I’m in the Member Spotlight. If you haven’t heard of the National Fatherhood Initiative, I urge you to check it out. It’s a DC-based group that’s trying to do something about the alarming lack of fathers in our children’s lives. It’s a staggering problem: over 30% of…Read More

What to Expect when You’re a Single Dad

When Linda was first pregnant with A-, our now 17yo (seventeen? Where the deuce did the time go??) one of the books I can recall us talking about was one of the bibles of pregnancy: What To Expect When You’re Expecting. I don’t think we bought it, though, as I remember thinking that it was very mainstream and by half-way through the pregnancy we’d decided on a home birth and were taking birth classes from…Read More

Learning to Accept a Helping Hand

A friend of mine was telling me about an interesting situation his 7th grade daughter’s gotten him into…. Seems her best friend lives with her Dad every other week even though they have a schedule problem: he works in Denver and has to leave by 7:00am to get to work on time, but school doesn’t start until 8:30am. She can, of course, get up, get ready for school and bike the about 2mi without a…Read More

Is Disney’s “The Pirate Fairy” Too Sexy?

Amongst the zillion mailing lists I’m on, I get publicity information from Disney Studios and as yesterday was Talk Like a Pirate Day (did you know that, me hearty?) I received the following image, tied into the “The Pirate Fairy” animated feature coming in 2014: The storyline is pretty typical for the Fairy series from Disney: “a pirate’s curse threatens to change the fairy world forever” and you can even go watch the trailer if you’d…Read More

Home life during the BoulderFlood: Not so Good

If you’re paying any attention to the news, you are aware that Boulder, Colorado, where we live, has been hit by epic flooding, the result of over 14″ of rain in the previous 3-4 days. It’s unreal, with houses under water, roads closed, schools closed, and a palpable sense of fear hovering over the entire state of Colorado. Further away we see  pictures of towns like Greeley and Loveland, or, closer to home, Longmont and…Read More

Sometimes Parenting Sucks…

I admit, I try to put a good face on things. My dictum is from The Life of Brian: “Always look on the bright side of life.” I mean, when your friends ask “how ya doing?” or “how’s it going?” they don’t really want an exposition on the various challenges and troubles you face as a parent, as an adult, as a worker, as part of a family that might not always sail smoothly into…Read More

I’ve got a thing about face scrubs…

This is kinda weird, I realize, but I blame Dove Men+Care for this new quirk of mine: I like using facial scrubs to wash my face morning and evening, and am on a quest to find the best one on the market. Why is Dove Men+Care on the hot seat? Because they were a sponsor of the great Dad 2.0 conference and as part of that sponsorship generously sent me a gift box with their…Read More

The Porn Discussion Redux

I’ve already danced around the pornography discussion with my son more than once, most notably as it relates to the increasingly pornographic “swimsuit edition” issue of Sports Illustrated. Here, go back and read my original post and the zillions of comments it garnered: Why I Censored My Son’s Sports Illustrated Subscription. Back? Good. So there are a lot of facets to pornography and while that article talked about my belief that titillating pictures of almost…Read More

College Road Trip, Last Installment: Cal Poly, UCSB, and UCSD

In the last few days we hit the last batch of colleges, from Cal Poly and UC Santa Barbara to Pepperdine, ending with UC San Diego. The journey’s been quite fun – California has a beautiful coast and I love the beach communities – and it’s been enhanced by the C-MAX Hybrid that Ford loaned us for the drive. In fact, I turned that back in to them yesterday and we were both sad to see it…Read More

Dad Is The World’s Greatest _______

I participated in the Procter & Gamble World’s Greatest Dad campaign, but did it a bit backwards: I was supposed to write about the #WorldsGreatest hashtag twitter campaign first, then write about the challenges parents face with children soaking happily in social media and the Internet. Me? I don’t follow rules so well, and instead wrote about online safety first, as faithful readers know. In fact, here’s the article: The Challenges of a Modern Day…Read More

Shaving with a Goatee

It was just a few months before Linda and I got married. We were living in Redwood City, California, and renting a split-level house. I went upstairs to shave and decided I’d do something different and shave off my beard and mustache. I came back downstairs, clean shaven, and looking pretty different. So different, in fact, that our dogs started barking at me: they didn’t recognize that strange man coming downstairs. Linda? She took one…Read More