What do you give a guy who has given you everything?
That’s the question that always comes up on Father’s Day. We never seem to have trouble finding something for Mom, but what do we buy dear old Dad on his special day?
Remember that we’re talking about a man who has never had trouble giving us his opinion — on any subject and usually in words spoken several levels above a whisper.
Most of us always know where Dad stands — his politics, his beliefs, his habits, his pet peeves, his favorite sports team — but we fumble the ball when it’s crunch time.
Why is it so difficult to buy the man a gift?
It’s partly his fault, of course. If your father is anything like ours, he’s pretty picky, which brings a lot of uncertainty to the table. Odds are he’ll say he likes what we give him, but he’ll be thinking that he could have done better buying one for himself.
Why is he so frustrating?
You wouldn’t think he would be difficult to shop for — after all, he’s still wearing the same styles that he favored years ago. In fact, the shirt he had on the other day may be the exact same one he wore to your high school graduation.
“If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” How many times have we heard him share those words of wisdom?
Since we know better than to go out on a limb trying to be creative, we usually wind up getting Dad pretty much the same thing year after year. How do you think that old tie joke got started?
But before you add to the clutter in your father’s closet again this year, stop and think about some of the gifts he has given you. We think there may be a clue in there somewhere to guide you to a better choice.
Sure, we know that today is Father’s Day. But bear with us. There’s still time.
Remember that your father is the one who hoisted you up and gave you a glimpse of the world from new heights, and he’s the one who encouraged you to take those first steps and stand on your own two feet.
It was Dad who had the faith to shove you away on two wheels and trusted you enough a few years later to hand you the car keys.
He’s the one who cleared the monsters from the closet and out from under your bed, listened when you got discouraged and told you to get over it when that was just the right advice.
What we’re trying to say is that while Dad gave you many things — including free room and board for a lot of years and the loan of a few bucks from time to time — he also gave of himself. He spent time with you and shared many valuable lessons.
He was there for you when you needed him, and maybe the perfect gift for him today would be a little of your time.
We have a friend whose favorite memories from childhood include sharing soft drinks and treats from the convenience store with his dad, and every year on Father’s Day, this friend makes sure to show up at his father’s house with a couple of candy bars and cold bottles of cola or root beer.
If you’re lucky enough to be near your dad today, why not drop by and spend a little time dusting off a few of your own memories? We know he’ll be glad to see you.
If time and distance are a problem, give your father a call — and this time, don’t ask for money.
Sometimes, sharing a little quality time is the best gift of all.
Happy Father’s Day.