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Father's Roundtable

Two dads-to-be and two dads-now-are participated in The Morning News New Father's Roundtable. I was one of 'em.

Posted on December 10, 2003 to Elsewhere, The Squirrelly


A quick, marginally on topic question: why "The Squirrelly"?

Posted by: alkali on December 10, 2003 8:54 AM

Note, that's two pas-to-be, and two now-dads. Way to go Punch.

Posted by: Rosecrans on December 10, 2003 9:02 AM

Alkali: "Squirrelies" has long been my term of endearment for children. It popped into my head at a house-warming party once, when, like, all 12 kids
in attendance were simultaneously running around, hopping on one foot, or fidgeting like mad.


Posted by: Matthew on December 10, 2003 9:06 AM

Oh, see, here I always thought Matthew was really, really funny--turns out it's the whole crew. You guys are great.

And thankyou thankyou thankyou for showing that not all expectant fathers are self-centered, idiotic basket cases. My husband wasn't, and neither were my friends. I am so tired of seeing that stereotype in the media. Men deserve better.

Now, the day when Dad is asked "Are you quitting work when the baby comes" as often as Mom will a day of celebration. (For the record, no, I didn't quit. He did. He's a much better parent than I am.) :-)


Posted by: Dorothy Lindman on December 10, 2003 12:03 PM

That was really charming. By the way, I thought DOGS were practice babies (drooling, emotionally needy, unhouse-broken eating machines). CATS are more like practice teenagers (lazy, aloof, egotistical, and asleep 18 hours a day).

Posted by: Kim on December 10, 2003 1:29 PM

Is it my imagination, or has Gore let himself go since the 2000 election?

Posted by: ranger on December 10, 2003 1:36 PM

This has nothing to do with squirrels or impending parenthood, but I will forever weep each time I read The Morning News, devastated over the loss of your old photo on the masthead.

Posted by: Toni on December 10, 2003 4:08 PM

Fun stuff, as usual! Gee, you guys are ruining the fatherhood curve, sounds like we went 4 for 4 as far as Good Fathers go. Couldn't you have invited just one jerk into the group ( I almost typed "circle" instead of "group", which would have made me the defacto jerk. Oops, I guess I DID type it after all!)

Posted by: mr. grooism on December 10, 2003 5:30 PM

Nice work! My biggest fear (being a dad) is my son asking, "Do you hafff-ta go to work today?"

Posted by: Mike on December 10, 2003 8:10 PM

"I know a big factor in my decision to become a father was my need to have someone around the house to bamboozle. My wife never falls for anything anymore."

Yeah. Enjoy that first year.
If yours turns out to be anything like mine, one of his/her first complete utterances will be: [rolling eyes] "Uh huh... Sure, Dad."

Posted by: Dugrless on December 10, 2003 8:24 PM

Brilliant. Speaking as one (I hope), it's nice to hear from literate, eager, involved (pending and arrived) fathers. Nice to see the Brott book get a mention, too, since it's the only useful book for fathers that doesn't start with a primer on "locating the diapered end". (Aside: The subsequent books by Dr. Brott aren't quite as useful, but buy 'em anyway because the occassional moments of relevance and insight just aren't written down anywhere else). Looking forward to further insights and interactions here and at TMN.

Posted by: David Vincenti on December 10, 2003 9:30 PM

So, why aren't you THAT funny here at your site, as you were in the roundtable?
I'm kidding. No, really. How come?

Posted by: Greg on December 11, 2003 12:09 AM

I loved reading that. I love reading anything that gives me a chance to reflect on how much I love being a dad.

Love it. Love it love it love it. It's the best feeling in the world.

We had to make it through the wilderness first, though. The first couple months, for us, were seriously a living hell. Neither of the are-dads mentioned that part. I think we like to forget about it. And trust me, by the time Sq. is six months old, he'll be giving you such intense joy on a minutely basis that forgetting all the bad stuff is not hard at all.

Anyway, you'll survive and make it through and come out the other side and then you will feel genuine sorrow for all the poor people of the world who haven't had any kids yet.

Posted by: Kev on December 11, 2003 7:20 PM

Great discussion. I especially loved the "moving a box of books" analogy. I also agree with everything Kev (above) said, especially the stuff about the first 4-6 months being absolutely nightmarish (but the payoff is well worth it).

I also thought Armin Brott's books were the only fatherhood books worth anything. In the same vein, the one baby name book that is remotely enjoyable is "Puffy, Xena, Quentin, Uma" by Joal Ryan. Some of the references are kind of dated already (i think the book is from the late 90's), but maybe she's done an updated version. It's hip and snarky and actually fun to read to each other on car trips.

Good luck with the Squirrel.

Posted by: Interruptor Jones on December 12, 2003 11:34 AM