HUMOR – I do not know much about psychology or the intricacies of human relationships, but I did skim-read “The Five Love Languages” by Gary Chapman a few years ago and what I took away from it is this: In order to express love and have the recipient recognize your expression of love for what it is, you must express your love in the language of the recipient. Easy peasy.
For example, imagine that Father’s Day is coming up and you are stumped for a gift idea which adequately shows your love and appreciation. Your father, or the father of your children, will not realize how much you love him if you give him business socks for Father’s Day when he is only fluent in fishing lures or foot massages. You need to get into the minds of the fathers in your life.
Bear with me as I attempt to delve into the mind of the male parent, using several well-known or influential fathers as my guides. If I am not back in fifteen minutes or less, send a rescue team.
First, fathers love to eat garbage.
To his eternal credit, Bill Cosby taught the world that chocolate cake – which contains eggs, milk, and wheat – constitutes an acceptable and nutritious breakfast. Just this morning my own husband distributed a round of Otter Pops to our children for “breakfast.”
My siblings and I always looked forward to those days when our dad would bring our lunches to school. Dad’s sack lunches were typically packed in a grocery-sized brown paper bag and contained various food-like items including, but not limited to: Lunchables, Chocodiles, potato chips, cookies, and always a Cactus Cooler soda to wash it down.
Something else that most fathers want is to feel that they are a hero. Otherwise, why would so many fathers attempt so many heroic feats? I can think of no other explanation for fathers like George Washington, Jean Valjean, Jor-El, and Will Smith. From changing flat tires to leading a revolution against the British monarchy, fathers just want to be a hero in the eyes of their children.
Another thing that fathers love is when their children follow in their footsteps. Take Darth Vader, for example. All that Darth Vader wanted from Luke Skywalker was for him to join him in ruling the galaxy as father and son. That is all. Sure, he blew up Luke’s home planet and later sliced off his hand with a light saber, but think how pleased Darth would have been if Luke had joined him instead of blowing the Death Star to smithereens.
Perhaps Darth Vader is not the best example of a father/child relationship, but you see what I am getting at. Fathers want to know that some part of them is immortalized in their offspring. Some of my father is immortalized in me: my love of sugar-laden foods and Lake Powell, as well as the fact that I have memorized the words of every country song which was recorded before 2003. Thanks, Dad.
In summary, most fathers want three things for Father’s Day – junk food, hero status, and immortality. This is why for Father’s Day I am giving my husband a bag of M&Ms, a Captain America t-shirt, and four children who all have his nose. Nailed it!
Elise Haynes chronicles family life in her blog Haynes Family Yard Sale. Any opinions stated in this column are her own and not necessarily those of St. George News.
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