If you have kids of your own, you know how insane it is when some famous idiot like Angelina Jolie is talking to a magazine and is like, "Oh, we all hang out at home together and watch movies in bed!" Of course you do. I'm sure flying to Cambodia to shoot ludicrous Louis Vuitton ads only takes five minutes out of your day. The rest is all dedicated to you and your 12,000 little ones.
Celebrities make for shitty parents for two obvious reasons. One: To be famous, you have to have an extreme need to be the center of attention, often at the expense of your loved ones. Two: You have no routine. Actors are contract workers. If they're working on some movie, they have to go away for weeks at a time and work 18 hours a day in various locations. Even if they bring a child with them, it completely bones the kid because children desperately need structure and routine. They need set bed times. They need set meal times. They need familiar environments. Celebrity parents provide none of those things, even the supposedly normal ones. Remember: Tom Hanks spawned Chet Haze. You can't go only by appearances.
So consider this a little thought experiment. Let's say you're going to jail for five years. You assaulted a hot dog vendor or something, because you're a dick. And you have to choose one celebrity (and their significant other) to raise your kid. Who do you pick? I considered the following seven people. I chose them based upon the following crucial factors:
- 1. They must be intelligent, or at least seemingly intelligent.
- 2. They cannot be married to another famous person. Like Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban? Fuck that. I'm not leaving my kids with those two loony toons. This disqualifies Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen, which is too bad. Because they seem like nice people. Then again, the whole blackface thing.
- 3. They must be currently married and never divorced. If that makes me conservative, so be it. Gotta have that stable family element. This discounts Louis CK, which sucks.
- 4. They must have a relatively sane working and travel schedule.
- 5. It would help if they didn't live anywhere near LA, so that your kids don't turn into Willow Smith and are like, "Well, I'm gonna do a little bit of acting, a little bit of singing, maybe have my own clothing line." SHUT UP. I HATE YOU.
With all those factors in mind, I present the following list:
1. Matt Damon
His mom can teach you stuff! His wife seems perfectly grounded and normal and will stay at home with you! WATER. He'll provide you and the world's children with millions of gallons of fresh, drinkable water if it kills him. Also, because Damon played Jason Bourne, your kids can maintain the illusion that their new daddy is a badass, even though he's really just an actor. I'm not wild about Damon bestowing Red Sox fandom upon kids, but no parent is perfect. Fucking Sox fans. What a bunch of whiny assholes.
Also, while I know Affleck seems to have a stable marriage, that shit can blow at ANY time. Remember, that guy took time out during The Town to get B-roll of himself doing dips and pull-ups. I'm not sold on Ben Affleck: Super-parent.
2. Matthew McConaughey
He'll send you weed in prison. He'll teach your child the bongos. His Brazilian wife will spoil your children with a constant supply of roasted meats on skewers. Obviously, the McConaughey household would be lacking in a certain discipline and structure. And yet, I feel like everything would be all right in the end, man. Just cooooooooool.
3. Dave Grohl
Please consult this image.
4. Neil Patrick Harris
My Gawker contract stipulates that I include a gay person or gay animal on this list, and NPH fits the bill perfectly. Not only is NPH steadily employed and beloved by virtually every segment of the population, but he also knows MAGIC. He could do tricks and put on recitals for your kids. He's like that pediatrician you take your kids to who's able to immediately forge a deeper bond with your child than you could after three years. Goddamn kid doctors. They think they have all the answers.
5. Meryl Streep
Her kids seem normal. And she lives in Connecticut, which is a perfectly acceptable place to raise healthy, normal, crazy WASPy kids. You'll get out of jail and your kids will already be able to mix a proper drink and make passive aggressive comments about all your Christmas party guests.
6. Jeff Bridges
He's been married for 35 years and has three grown children who do not appear to have any problems with snorting heroin or going into ironic hip hop careers. He's already miles ahead of the pack. Plus he can play the guitar, smoke weed with restraint, and seems to have the calm, level demeanor needed to deal with insane kids who won't stop jumping off the bunk bed. Your kids would be so, so much cooler if Jeff Bridges adopted them. Frankly, you should just hand them over to him now, jail or no jail.
7. Drew Brees
Drew Brees knows your Daddy went to prison. But Drew Brees thinks we all make mistakes, and that everyone still has time to learn from their mistakes and be a good person. So Drew Brees will raise you as his own child for the next five years, and then hand you back to your real Dad once he's finished doing time. It'll be hard, given how much Drew Brees will come to love you and how much you'll enjoy watching your foster daddy throw for 6,000 yards and deny any knowledge of the Saints' bounty program, but Drew Brees will do the right thing. Also... ear muffs!
Top image by Jim Cooke, photos via Blaj Gabriel and Jose AS Reyes/Shutterstock</a>.