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Rob Jenkins: Some favorite things I've said about fathers

Rob Jenkins

Rob Jenkins

They say that you should write about what you know, and with four kids ranging in age from 15 to 25, there are few things I know more about than fatherhood.

That's not to say I know a lot about it, just that I know even less about nearly everything else.

In any case, I've certainly written about fatherhood enough over the years. In honor of Father's Day 2013, here are some of my favorite things I've said about dads:

-- While his children are young, a father is primarily a piece of all-purpose recreation equipment: a combination pitching machine/rebounder/portable goalpost/jungle gym. When occasion requires, he can become an entire playground, complete with swing set, riding toys, monkey bars, even a trampoline, if he's got a gut like those TV dads.

-- Unfortunately, the media continues to glamorize single motherhood -- and by extension, absentee fatherhood -- despite mounting evidence that children without fathers tend to be poorer, achieve less in school, commit more crimes, die younger and, worst of all, perpetuate the cycle by becoming single mothers or absentee fathers themselves.

But perhaps the most alarming result of all the "single mom" propaganda is that society appears finally to have accepted the definition of "father" that radical feminists have been trying to foist upon us for decades: namely, "sperm donor."

-- Teaching our sons how to treat women means setting the example, by how we treat their mothers and sisters and any other women with whom we happen to come into contact. I'm assuming most of us do not come into contact with Nancy Pelosi.

-- What dad really wants for Father's Day is to be pampered a little bit, just for one day. If he's a good dad, he spends the rest of the year making sure everybody else is happy. This is one day when you can make sure he's happy, even if that means taking back the ugly golf shirt.

-- I always thought I would make a pretty cool dad, completely unlike my own father, who was of course the epitome of uncool. He was still wearing straight-leg slacks when bell-bottoms were all the rage. He had short hair back when anybody who was cool wore flowing locks.

Worst of all, he expected me to do extremely uncool things, like study, work hard and save money. Definitely a drag.

Then I had a few kids of my own, at which point I made a pair of startling discoveries: 1) My dad is a pretty cool guy after all; 2) I'm not.

-- This Father's Day, I'm grateful for a father who loves and is committed to my mother and who has been a steady, consistent presence throughout my life.

I'm also grateful for the opportunity I've had to be part of my four children's lives -- recognizing that, on a given day, some of them might feel a little less grateful for that.

Rob Jenkins is a local freelance writer and author of "Family Man: The Art of Surviving Domestic Tranquility," available at Books for Less in Buford and on Amazon. Email Rob at rjenkinsgdp@yahoo.com or visit familymanthebook.com.