Mother's Day's oft-forgotten cousin is upon us on Sunday and it's very likely, giving the creeping nature of the holiday, that you've forgotten to get a gift for dad. But fear not! We're here to help.
For the Dad Who...
...Just Watched the Celtics Lose By a Nose
Oh man is this dad sad. Not only did his team lose the big game, but he's a Celtics fan, which probably means he's from New England, which means that his is a sad, fraught, stressful sporting life. To be a Boston fan is to be the fan, the quintessential faithful rooter. He's had some soaring joys (2004) and many crushing defeats (pretty much every other year, except 2006! and 2008!). Now, in his time of great mourning, you need to give him something that will take his mind off the pain, if only for a little while. So why don't you drop the cash, hop on the green line or the commuter rail and head on over to Fenway. The baseball season is practically just beginning. There are months to go before he'll be let down by the Sox. Of course if they lose the game you attend, he'll probably hurl himself off the Green Monster, but at least you tried.
...Would Like to Speak to You in the Other Room, Please
This dad is mad. You're pretty sure you know what it's about. It's either the thing with the loan or Denise told him what you said about Uncle Jerry. Either way, he's going to give you one of those "I'm not mad, I'm disappointed" speeches and those are just about the most awful things ever. So quick, get him something really good that will make him think you're a good son or daughter again. You know what you should do for him? Go weed the side yard. Sure it's awful, annoying work, but every time you're home and he wants a little help with some "projects" he's been saving for when you and your brother are home, he finds you both slumped in front of the TV and you promise you'll come out and help "in a minute," but you never do — and he knows you're not going to. So that would be the surprise! Before you go into the other room and he quietly makes you feel like a terrible, lazy failure of a human being, go put on those ratty work gloves that smell like paint and pull those damn weeds out of that damn side yard. He'll be so shocked and appreciative that he'll forget all about the huge scratch on the side of the car you totally thought he wouldn't notice.
...Is Living in a Great New Apartment Now
Oh yeah, it's a real great place. Not too much space to keep clean, ice machine right down the hall. Well, yeah, you could call it a motel, but they rent by the week, so it's pretty much like an apartment. Oh that, yeah, the TV doesn't work too well, but hey, more time to read, right? There's the hot plate there, which is good to make some dinner quickly, plus there's a Ruby Tuesday's right across the parking lot. Though that place isn't cheap and money is a little tight these days, heh heh, so can't do that too often. No no, Ramen's just fine. It's like being back in college! You know that's where your dad met your mother. Yup, sophomore year, they lived in the same dorm... Lotsa years ago now, huh? Things sure do change. Anyway. How is she? She holding up OK? How's the house? Yeah, they don't allow dogs here, so your mom is gonna have Baxter for a little while, just til things get settled and your dad can find a real place. Maybe one of those condos down by the water? Those are pretty nice. But all told, things are prettttyyy good here, yessir. Living the bachelor life again. Hold on, that's your dad's lawyer on the phone, he should answer that, it could be about the settlement. You know what your dad could really use this Father's Day? One of your mom's lasagnas. Why don't you run on over to the house and see if there's one in the freezer and bring it back here. That'll heat right up on the hot plate. Yessir. This is a full-service apartment. Everything's gonna be great. You'll see.
...Thinks You Should Go Ask Your Mother
This dad doesn't want to get involved. No sir. He made that mistake the time Denise wanted to go to Mikey Hanlon's party back in 10th grade and she asked him, knowing he would say something like "What do I care? Have fun." When your mom came back from your aunt's house she was maaaaad. Denise was not supposed to go to that party. Since then, this dad just stays out of it. Defers always to mom. He might feel a little powerless in the household these days, mostly because he is. (Though now that you two are out of the house, there aren't that many decisions to be made anyway.) So all you have to do for a good Father's Day gift is walk up to him on Sunday and ask him something — can you have that old stand-up radio in the basement because it would look great in your apartment, can you have the Toyota for the Fourth weekend to go to Jane's stepmom's beach house — and when he says "Go ask your mother," just simply and as believably as possible say "She told me to ask you." He'll pretend not to seem surprised and pleased and he'll lower the newspaper and say "Oh, well, OK. I don't see why not then." And that's all there is to it.
...Just Came Sprinting Out of the Closet
Apparently your dad and Glenn have gone from racquetball partners to just... partners. OK. That's... that's fine. It's 2010. He and mom split up years ago anyway and she's doing fine. So there's nothing wrong with this. And the new house is... interesting. That black and white photo in the foyer of the young men on the beach? The lighting in it is just... so... But yeah, it's great. You're happy for both of them. it's always nice to find the person you're supposed to be with. You need to get him a Father's Day gift that represents that. Maybe something for Glenn too. He seems to like things with seashells on them and... erotic placemats. So. Hm. Oh, maybe something for that spare room they have upstairs, the one with the massage table and the padlocked trunk? Like a floor lamp or a plant or something? Or maybe it's just better to avoid that room altogether. Just take them to brunch. They like brunch, right?