Now, I had a great dad. And so did all my siblings. We all miss him terribly. And so do his grandchildren. He was the head of our family and, quite probably, the heart too.
Now, my brother-in-law has taken over as the head boy, as it were. And his kids love him, so do his grandchildren. He's a great dad. I'm sure my nieces & nephews also think their dad, my brother, is great.
I work with great dads. I know lots of people with great dads. I know more people with great dads than I do people with not-so-great dads.
So... when I came to put together lists of books for father's day for work, there was a problem.
Oh, not with picture books. Of course not! Dads in picture books are mostly great - some are goofy. Even the divorced dads are pretty great.
But... when it came to children's fiction, something changed. Do you know how difficult it was to find great dads?!?! Apart from Danny, the champion of the world by Roald Dahl, that is! There are 2 Elvis impersonator dads - two!!! If dads aren't absent, druggies, in prison, abusive... they're generally embarrassing. What is with that?!?!
I didn't bother looking for teen books. It could be much the same.
When the reality is that MOST dads are great, yes maybe a little goofy & a little embarrassing - but... in a collection as large & varied as ours, why was it such a struggle to find such dads? Because... I'm struggling for reasons really.
Maybe it's like the 'real world' and who wants to read about real world, when you can read about worlds worse than yours.
And now - I'm heading off to spend Father's Day with some of my dad's work, my brother-in-law, my other brother-in-law's great dad, and my friend who is just about to become a dad - I'm sure he'll be great, too. Oh, and various other relatives. But a lot of great dads, in a place we can all celebrate my great dad.
I wish he was here to celebrate with us. I miss you Dad. Really do. You were great. And our grief is testiment to that.