Meet Frank circa Father's Day 2010

Father’s Day Gift Guide

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Meet Frank circa Father's Day 2010 Father’s Day advertisements have long bothered me. I feel bad for men who reap the efforts of this pathetic, uber-stereotyped marketing. Men are painted to have just a few interests, along the lines of golf, grilling, sports, tools, BBQ, beer and “man caves.”

Give me a break. This isn’t a Tim Allen show.

Most men I know – even those who aren’t fathers – have more depth than this. They have interest in music, good food, travel, reading, politics, art.

Sometimes around this time of year, I’ll find a story online that appears to be more relevant, a “cool dad’s gift guide” (or so it will be titled) – and it turns out to be all hipster-esque. My dad does not want an ironic t-shirt or Buddy Holly glasses. OK?

My father does not want for much, in fact. He’s not a “stuff” guy, and his interests are concentrated in World War II books and movies, Netflix, Puma sneakers, golf (okay, so you got me there, but he doesn’t give a shit about personalized golf balls or quirky tees) and dark rum.

Please let me confirm for you that I have given him any and all of these related gifts: Netflix subscription, passes to the Hershey Links (once he used it, once he didn’t – argh), sneakers, WWII books (which he already read – ugh) and dark rum (always a hit!).

I used to take him out – for beer dinners or tastings. But he really just wants face-to-face time and some good coffee. He likes Starbucks and Cornerstone.

This Father’s Day, I implore you to look beyond the easy-to-buy tie, grilling apron or personalized pint glasses. Think about what your dad enjoys – it may just be time with you. And it doesn’t have to be expensive.

Below I have just a few ideas on ways you can treat your dad this weekend (You know you hadn’t planned any further than this anyway. Consider it a slight head start.

  1. If Dad likes trying new beer (my dad does, but some he thinks are just weird), take him to Al’s and buy him a ‘Mix a Six’ for like $13 and let him pick out whatever he wants. Or, surprise him so he doesn’t have to leave the house.
  2. While on beer, tours of Troegs and ABC are always an option. Sampler platters afterwards are a cheap way to say “I love you in beer.”
  3. Road trip it to the Red Rabbit for bunny burgers and shakes. I actually think my dad would love this, but he’d never drive that far for a meal.
  4. Golf lessons at Bumble Bee followed by 3B’s Ice Cream – this was my husband’s birthday gift this year.
  5. If you or dad is out of town, buy tickets for a future baseball game or plan a camping trip. Think first: Is this something my dad is into, or am I the one into it?
  6. What’s dad’s favorite meal? Make it for him or take him out. Bring his favorite wine, beer or booze, too. Plus, you can (almost) never go wrong with a PA Wine & Spirits gift card.
  7. Mow his yard/fix his car – basically, do something that makes his life easier.
  8. Dads are more sentimental than they lead on. A small photo album or collage with pictures of your family will never be requested, but will be much appreciated.
  9. My dad might not be into the junky, promotional tchotckes, but he loves a new golf shirt and Puma socks.
  10. If dad is a reader, perhaps a trip to Midtown Scholar Bookstore or Olde Towne Books and Brew fits the bill. Buy him a coffee (or tea – or milkshake) and treat him to a new (to him) book.

Note: These weren’t selected with Father’s Day specials in mind, and there are plenty of those to go around. That said, please check operating hours – some of the above listed venues may not have Sunday hours. Your dad doesn’t care – Saturday is fine, too.

Sara Bozich
Author: Sara Bozich

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