Being a dad is a dangerous job

Laurie Sontag

When I was a little girl, every single weekend my father risked his own life to ensure that my sisters and I were safe. That’s because every single weekend he took my sisters and I to the ice cream store and bought us cones. And then he willingly took the biggest risk ever and taste tested our ice cream for us to make sure it wasn’t “poisoned.”
I know, right? Dad jobs are dangerous.
I mean, it isn’t just the whole checking for poisoned pralines and cream thing that’s an issue. Although, considering the sample size my father had to take from every ice cream my sisters and I ate, he not only risked poison, but serious cholesterol issues. But fathers have many other jobs that they perform effortlessly—or at least it seems that way to small children.
Fixing plumbing
At times, I pity fathers. Their role in the house, in addition to food taster, is to fix plumbing. At any given time during the course of a day, a father can be called upon to fix a garbage disposal that literally fell off the sink, a plugged up shower and a toilet that is clogged with an entire collection of LEGO “Star Wars” figurines which mysteriously do not belong to anyone living in the house.
Wildlife control
Fathers are not just responsible for letting the dogs outside to pee while simultaneously keeping the cats inside to pee. They are responsible for keeping the lizard in its cage—and in the case of the lizard’s escape, they are responsible for moving large built-in pieces of furniture to find said lizard and return it to its rightful habitat.
They are also responsible for spider relocation, a job not easily performed as someone is usually screaming in their ears while they try to catch and release said spider. And mouse traps. And gopher traps. And snake wrangling. In rare cases they may be called upon to put a goldfish back in the bowl after it has been taken for a “walk” by a 3-year-old.
Wildlife funerals
Should the aforementioned job end abruptly with an accident, fathers are also experts at performing wildlife funerals. These usually consist of burials at sea, which of course brings the father back to No. 1, fixing the plumbing.
Barbecue pit master
In backyards throughout the South Valley, dads will be firing up the grill this weekend. They do not care that it is hot outside. They do not care that it is Father’s Day weekend and they should be sitting around the house admiring their brand new ties. No. They want to be in the backyard, cooking food. This is because dads believe that they, and only they, are the barbecue pit masters of the world. I do not understand this phenomenon. Is it a man thing? Is the Y chromosome responsible for a burning desire to char food?
Fixing stuff
In addition to the aforementioned plumbing, fathers also usually possess a large, red chest filled with tools. These tools are guarded as though the Holy Grail resides in them. No one is allowed to touch these tools—which are usually obtained from a secret tool aisle in the front of OSH, where all the good tools reside. But we don’t resent this at all. Nope. That’s because the tools are used to fix everything from a leaky faucet to a bike chain to the brakes on our vehicles.
So Happy Father’s Day to all the dads out there—the ones chilling and grilling in the brand new ties they will never wear again, while simultaneously keeping an eye on their toolbox in case somebody decides Darth Vader needs a swirly.

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