Around this time of year, I hear the words that most blokes have been dreading for weeks. I’ve only just started to recover from the trauma of having to deal with a similar conversation in December, and also a couple of weeks before my birthday. Still, the words when they come, are shocking and send shivers down my spine – ‘Darling, what would you like for Father’s day? We need some ideas…’
So, ladies, offspring, and offspring of offspring, what does a Daddy really, really want for Father’s Day?
The trouble is, I’m not sure any dad is going to get what he really, really wants. The costs would be prohibitive, and I’m not even sure such a gift exists. But since you’ve asked, I’ll tell you what dads want. All we want is ……. (drum roll)…..
a full day of PEACE!
You see the dilemma here? If there really was something of a material nature that I wanted, and if as a family we could afford it, I would have bought it by now. A day of peace though is impossible, because you see, the very process of giving him a present is denying him the one thing he really wants! You think I’m being too cynical? OK then, let’s list out my perfect Father’s Day, and see if it’s possible.
The house has been silent all morning, but at 11am I’m awoken by a gentle nudge, and whispered words “Happy Father’s Day, here’s a cup of tea, and your breakfast fry-up. There’s the paper, now boys, give daddy a kiss and a cuddle, tell him how much you love him, give him your lovely home-made cards (because we know how much daddy froths at the mouth when the card shop charges £2.50 for a piece of folded card with a crap joke on it…) and then leave him be for the rest of the day…”
At 12 I’ve dragged my sorry backside out of bed, not bothered to shower, thrown some clothes on, and my darling has ushered me through the kitchen, where the first whiffs of the Sunday roast are beginning to seep out of the Aga, and into the passenger seat of the car. 5 minutes later, I’m safely delivered to the pub for a couple of hours or so of aperitifs.
At 3pm, the car arrives back at the pub for the return journey, whereupon the next hour or so is spent quietly eating a full Sunday roast dinner, washed down with a glass or two from the Laithwaites order that secretly arrived through the week. There are no arguments or fights between the boys to deal with, and no probing questions about how many pints I’d consumed at the boozer, or who I’d picked a political argument with this time!
4pm onwards I’m led into the sun-drenched garden, where the smell of freshly mown grass informs me that I’ve got the weekend off from mowing, strimming and dog poo disposal duties. I fashion a ridiculous hat made out of one of the dafter Sunday Times supplements, and snooze the afternoon away.
At 6pm, a gentle tap on the shoulder tells me it’s time for a light tea, and I then have the lounge and the big TV all to myself for the evening. I can watch whatever I want, from Songs of Praise, to 3 lots of highlights of F1. I can shout at the characters in the hospital soap to “answer the bloody phones will you!” And I can swear freely at hypocritical lying politicians without fear of contradiction or a reminder to keep it down for the sake of the kids, because by now the kids have been bathed, and are snoring gently in their beds.
Sometime between 10pm and midnight, I’m back in bed, with a big mug of builders tea and a packet of hobnobs and I slowly drift off into more mindless slumber for the night.
Alternatively, I could just accept a £2.50 card (including the crap joke), and the witty book/socks & pants/Black & Decker (delete or add as appropriate) with genuine gratitude. And it would be genuine, because whatever they do, like most dads, I adore my kids and their mum, and I know it all springs from the right motive. But, just a little bit of peace really, really would make the day perfect…
Pin this for later: