an official nice guy endorsement: PARENTING!
seriously! just yesterday i got the february issue of the mag in my mailbox (on jan. 12 ... why not?). but as a side note before i get started (what would that be, by the way? not quite a prologue, more of a side-logue or maybe a demilogue. i don't know; i'll let you figure it out), i'd like to point out that i never actually subscribed to PARENTING magazine. it just started arriving. one day i had me a infunt, the next day i was readin' me a magazine! simple as that. how did the topdawg at PARENTING magazine know that li'l ol' me was procreatin'? more importantly: how did he track my unlisted ass down?
ANYWAY. the latest incarnation of the magazine came yesterday. there is no stopping its arrival, with its beautiful baby doll-models and 22-year-old coke-skinny covermoms. february's issue in particular caught old eagle-eye nice guy's attention for a couple reasons. first of all: have you ever looked at the cover, directly above the bold printed "PARENTING?" no? take a gander some time. there, hovering over the magazine's very name, you will read this line: "what matters to moms."
oh, no. they di'n't.
oh yes they did! PARENTING magazine puts it right above their own name: parenthood is for girls! NOW THEY TELL ME! this wouldn't be so totally and completely awesome if february's issue didn't also come complete with a Very Special Feature Article by the world famous William Sears M.D. ... devoted entirely to "the daddy-baby connection." wow. thank you, PARENTING magazine for dedicating an entire article in your parenthood-for-girls magazine to dads! we are so very blessed. since you took such a special effort to address our complicated needs, i -- being a "dad" and therefore not technically a "parent" -- feel it is incumbent upon myself to take special care in giving your magazine a close reading this month, to the extent that i can actually read. shall we begin? oh goodie!
first thing's first, by which i mean not second. i being a dad, and therefore a male, notice that the very first advertisement spread across two pages of your magazine is for some random australian hair product (tagline: "add some roo to your do" ... that's copyrighted, folks) prominently featuring four very hot, very not-mom models. actually they're probably not even "driving-age" models. whatever. i guess the advertising industry needs moms to feel bad about their bodies and hair and their age just like they do non-moms. better still is the next page! after your soft-core prepubescent surfer-girl two-page, um, spread, for follicle fabulosity is a TWO PAGE SPREAD FOR CONTRACEPTIVES!!!! this, i will remind you, is a magazine all about the joys of having babies. (with, presumably, fellow adults.)
i repeat: AWESOME.
but, oh, it gets so much more awesome on page 66, the page where the "daddy-baby love" article (as the editor's note calls it) officially begins. it's called "the daddy-baby connection" and here, line-by-line is why it receives The Official Mr Nice Guy Endorsement of Awesome:
- "The Daddy-Baby Connection" tagline: "Everyday ways to help them bond" because we poptards will never establish an effective bond with our own children unless some benevolent soul comes to guide us along our bumpy journey, clucking her tongue and half-ironically tapping her left toe while smirking ruefully at all our wacky foibles.
- the parenthetical after the tagline "(think diapers, dancing and more)" what? you mean i am going to have to wipe a butt? AND dance? and then do ... "more???" i was told wipe OR dance, but not both ... my god, cruella. the second you ask me to, like, give you input on my daughter's footware, i am so on a one-way flight to reno. who signed me up for this crazy "parenting" escapade?!?
- paragraph five: "Dads have a delightfully different way of relating to their babies -- and their babies enjoy this difference." nice. do you know what i most enjoy about this sentence? the vocabulary lesson. this here piece of advice reminds us that "fathering" is the latinate root of "patronizing." thank you for making that connection so explicit.
- paragraph six, addressed to the mother who takes a high-stakes risk and leaves her kid alone with dad for a few minutes: "You might be surprised at the fuss busters your partner musters with absolutely no help from Mother." ha! take that "mom." sure that sentence makes no sense, but you might be surprised! you might realize that you have put so little faith in your man all these years that leaving your helpless babe alone with dad might start you along an uncomfortable road of introspection and self-doubt. you might find yourself wondering if you've ever quite accurately grasped even the most trivial events in your own life. you might realize that, in despair, you have turned to PARENTING magazine to help you through your marital problems which you now realize might actually spawn from your own father's ancient neglect and jesus what does it take to get noticed around here!? you are a full-grown woman, the last time you checked!
- paragraph seven: "When given freedom, he may start to develop his own rituals with your baby." DO NOT LET THIS HAPPEN! remember this is YOUR baby. not "his!"
- somewhere on page two of the story, under the "Help them get a little closer" section, Dr. William Sears recommends getting dad a baby sling: "This physical closeness is a very natural way for them to bond, and (bonus) he'll have his hands free to help out with the dishes!" hahahahaha! this is funny because, silly rabbit, dads don't do dishes! gosh!
- on page three there is a graphic with "Baby-calming moves a dad can love ... number one: THE FOOTBALL HOLD." because if it won't fit into some kind of homo-erotic sporting metaphor, we just ain't interested, woman! now go rub some more aussie roo hair gel into your scalp and make with the fancy IUD! daddy needs some mommy time. baby boring!