The Worst Gifts To Give Your Significant Other

(Getty/Beau Lark)

“You know, the nice thing about this baby is that you can mulch the grass, attach a bag to the rear OR slap this little plastic thing-a-ma-jig on the side and discharge that shit right out into the street! Happy Birthday, Judy.”

I’m 99% sure that’s the conversation that happened between our neighbors, Mr. and Mrs. Carter, in August of 1979. That assumption is based on the fact that I’d overheard my Mom say, “It’s Judy’s birthday today. I should giver her a call.” and then seeing Mrs. Carter mowing their front yard with a shiny new Lawn Boy the next day.

My goal here is to give you a list of some of the worst gifts you can give your wife/partner/significant other. Let’s get the obvious ones out of the way: no bears carved out of tree stumps, no tubs of protein powder and nothing that uses “As Seen on TV” as its marketing strategy. Consider this a “teaching a man to fish” moment.

LAWN EQUIPMENT

As my short story about poor Mrs. Carter would imply, buying your wife a lawn mower as a gift is a guaranteed way to make sure you’re sex life becomes monastic. The same goes for weed whippers, hedge trimmers, vacuum cleaners, washers and dryers…you get the point. You NEVER buy your partner anything that helps them do something they hate to do more efficiently.

CLOTHING

Clothes…bad. “You really think I’m this big?” Or, “I already have one of these. Didn’t you notice?” Even if she likes what you bought and you win, you lose because now you’ve set the bar unrealistically high for the next time. Do yourself a favor and don’t appear to be too good at anything. It never hurts to have a little bit of a “fuck up” quality to your character. Your schedule on the weekends will be much more wide open if you do.

SELF PORTRAITS

A picture of…wait…YOU! Really bad. She sees you everyday…whether she wants to or not. Women rarely hide their emotions so if she wanted a glossy 8×10 of you with the kind of soft lighting they use to use on Liz Taylor, she would’ve asked for it. My money says, she’s never asked for it.

GIFT CARDS

Gift cards are shit. A gift card says the only effort you put forth was scanning the impulse buy section of the checkout line while you were looking for Certs and came across that $50 BW3 card. That’s what you’ve made her…an impulse buy.

A STAR

How about this? There’s a website where you can name a star after someone you love. The site should also include a link to the cheapest divorce attorney because you’ll need it. Unless you met your significant other at the NASA Christmas party, naming a star she’ll never see after her is like buying Erin Brockovich bottled water from the springs of Chernobyl.

VACATIONS

Vacations…nope…UNLESS you present the idea with enough lead-time for her to be fully involved in every aspect of the planning. Otherwise, you’re going to fuck it up…yes, you will. You’ll choose to drive instead of fly so the two of you can “see some of the country.” She doesn’t want to navigate; she wants to be there. You’ll schedule at least one excursion based on your interests and not hers. The motorcycle museum will be like Pan’s Labyrinth to her. Stay home.

IN CLOSING….

It’s simple…be thoughtful. The greatest gift you can give your partner is the one that lets them know you’ve been paying attention. It doesn’t have to be big and expensive. Maybe a vintage copy of a book that changed her life or a souvenir from the restaurant where you proposed to her or a DVD of the first movie you saw together. The best gift I’ve ever received from my wife was an ink sketch she had done of our first tiny little house. This was the home we decorated exactly the way we wanted. The little Cape Cod with a single stall garage where I mounted a basketball hoop. The place where we were living when both of our daughters were born. I get emotional every time I look at it.

Unfortunately for her, I’ve never been able to match this one, but I’ll be damned if I won’t keep trying.

Music Video Shows People With Down Syndrome Living Their Best Lives [WATCH]

(Facebook/Wouldn't Change A Thing)

World Down Syndrome Day is here!

Today is the day when those with Down Syndrome, as well as those who live and work with them, come together to raise public awareness and create a single global voice, advocating for the right, inclusion and well being of those with Down Syndrome.

The parent-led Down Syndrome awareness organization “Wouldn’t Change a Thing” is focused on creating a world where negative and inaccurate perceptions of Down Syndrome are a thing of the past.

This year, the organization created a video to the tune of Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now” to highlight the ways in which people with Down Syndrome of all ages enjoy and achieve in life.


“This video project lets the fulfilling lives of young people with Down Syndrome do the talking,” they wrote in the description. “It holds up a mirror to society and dares the viewer to challenge everything they thought they knew about Down Syndrome, and to think again.”

Want to show the organization your support? Check out their Facebook page and don’t forget to use #wouldntchangeathing

Bill & Ted Face The Music as Middle Aged Dads in 2020 [WATCH]

Bill & Ted Teaser Announcement
(Twitter/BillandTed3)

You know those guys you knew in high school or college who you could never imagine having kids? Maybe they were burnouts or jelly butts, or maybe they just didn’t seem like they’ ever grow up? We all knew guys like that, and wouldn’t you know it, as unlikely as it seemed at the time, they ended up getting older too!

In related news, Bill S. Preston, Esquire and Ted “Theodore” Logan – Bill and Ted – are coming back in a new movie, and in it, they’re middle-aged dads. And we are all officially old men.

That’s right, a third Bill and Ted movie is coming soon to a theater near you, written by the screenwriters of the first two flicks, with original stars Alex Winter and Keanu Reeves reprising their famous roles. But things are a little different this time because while Wyld Stallyns remain together, they’re now – wait for it – middle-aged dads! And you thought they went through hell in BOGUS JOURNEY!

Strange things are afoot at the Circle K.

Seeing those two as parents is going to be something. Especially without the guidance of the late great George Carlin as Rufus! Here’s hoping they’re not quite as airheaded as they used to be.

Today, the duo went on Twitter to thank fans and officially announce that the film – Bill and Ted Face the Music – will be released on August 21st, 2020.

In the short video, Winter says the film is a result of all the fan support: “It is all because of you guys, so we owe you a huge debt of gratitude and we want to say thank you.”


The official synopsis, from the press release:

Yet to fulfill their rock’n’roll destiny, the now middle-aged best friends set out on a new adventure, when a visitor from the future warns them that only their song can save life as we know it and bring harmony to the universe. Along the way, they will be helped by their families, old friends and a few music legends.

Quentin Tarantino’s Once Upon a Time In Hollywood Trailer Is Here [WATCH]

Once Upon a Time In Hollywood
(YouTube/Sony Pictures Entertainment)

A new Quentin Tarantino movie is always an occasion. A new Leonardo DiCaprio movie is too. A new Quentin Tarantino/Leonardo DiCaprio collaboration that also stars Brad Pitt and Margot Robbie, takes place in late 60s Hollywood, and features a story-line that somehow includes Bruce Lee and Charles Manson?

I’ve already bought my tickets.

ONCE UPON A TIME IN HOLLYWOOD is Tarantino’s 9th flick and his first since THE HATEFUL EIGHT in 2015. A lot has happened since then. Tarantino’s benefactor and friend, Harvey Weinstein was outed as ground zero for the #metoo movement and his studio was shuttered. The director himself ran into some trouble regarding past statements defending Roman Polanski and PULP FICTION star Uma Thurman’s airing of grievances over the abusive treatment she received on the set of KILL BILL.

But today Tarantino is back in the news for his work, as the sun-dappled first trailer for his new movie landed on YouTube and looks to be a heck of a good time. The teaser trailer even makes it look a little like it might be the writer/director’s first comedy, the many hilarious moments and quotable lines from his previous films notwithstanding.

Then again, Charles Manson (played by Damon Herriman, aka the affable idiot Dewey on Justified) shows up, and Margot Robbie is portraying Sharon Tate, the young starlet who was infamously murdered by Manson and his acolytes. So maybe “comedy” is a bit too strong a word.

Here’s the official plot synopsis:

A faded TV actor (Leo) and his stunt double (Brad) strive to achieve fame and success in the film industry during the final years of Hollywood’s Golden Age in 1969 Los Angeles.

One thing’s for sure – everyone in the cast seems to be having a great time, and we didn’t even catch a glimpse of co-stars Al Pacino (his first QT joint!), Kurt Russell, the late Luke Perry, and typical Tarantino stalwarts Tim Roth, Michael Madsen, and more.

I can’t wait to see this thing. It hits theaters on July 26th.

Watch the fun teaser trailer:

Stranger Things 3 Trailer: Being A Teenager Sucks With/Without Monsters

StrangerThingsCover
(YouTube)

It’s tough being a teen, no doubt about it.

Hormones, first jobs, mind-flaying monsters from another universe, homework. It’s no wonder kids can be so moody.

The full trailer for Stranger Things Season 3 has dropped, and boy howdy do those Hawkins kids not know how to stay out of inter-dimensional trouble. From this new trailer we can see that Eleven, Mike, Lucas, Dustin and Will are spending their 1985 summer coping with some feelings we saw begin to develop at the end of last season that anyone familiar with high schoolers will recognize. Primarily: Angst. Deep, unrelenting angst. But the Upside Down isn’t done with our heroes just yet, and they’ll have to band together to save the universe during the #BestSummerEver

Max is still a part of the gang, sharing slumber party dance parties with Eleven, because no evil force in the universe can stand against the unbridled emotion of a teenager’s slumber party, while her jerk brother seems to have gotten the ultimate jerk brother summer job as a lifeguard. (Editor’s Note: The Dad doesn’t believe life guards are jerks. It’s just a thing in movies and shows for some reason.)

The highlight of the trailer is world’s greatest honorary dad Steve Harrington sword fighting and fist bumping with Dustin at his mall job. Steve gets an eye roll from his coworker, but how dare you judge a man for showing his adoptive son affection, lady?

This season is set during 1985, meaning Back To The Future is a strong contender for a pop cultural touchstone, the way Ghostbusters was in season 2. The Duffer brothers have also commented that Chevy Chase’s classic P.I. farce, Fletch played a heavy role in influencing this season. Could that suggest a lighter tone in Hawkins this time around?

Whatever happens, the shot of the kids putting up a radio tower to the beat of an 80’s Baba O’Riley, plus the season’s tagline make it abundantly clear this season is a summer vacation adventure. We can’t wait for July 4th.

Mom Vents About Son’s Hilarious School Photos, Ends Up Going Viral

(Facebook/Stronajai Miles)

Despite how thoroughly you iron their shirt or perfectly part their hair, there is simply too much time between when your kid leaves for school and when they sit down for their school photos. Any number of things could happen to jeopardize your little angel’s perfect picture—a ketchup stain from lunch, tousled hair during gym, or, in this very specific case, a magnificent roar.

When Stronajai Miles came across Andrew’s school photos while going through his backpack, she was less than thrilled to discover her kindergartener’s fierce as hell pose.

“I saw the photos and I was like, ‘Oh my God, Drew!’ It was a blood-curdling scream that ran through the house. Like what is this?” Stronajai said.

Obviously annoyed, Stonaraji’s logged in to Facebook to share the photos along with a mini vent session against Lifetouch School Photography, the company who took Andrew’s photo that day.

What she did not expect was for the photos to start going viral almost immediately.

After her conversations with representatives from Lifetouch, Stronajai wrote a follow-up post voicing her appreciation for both her son’s wonderful personality and all the positive feedback that helped open her eyes to how everything doesn’t need to be “cookie cutter” perfect when you have kids.


As for Andrew, he still loves his school photos and thinks all the love he’s been getting, as a result, is just icing on the cake.

And he does not have plans to stop roaring any time soon.

(Facebook/Stronajai Miles)

Father Figures: Heart Deceleration

“I’ve always wanted to be a dad.

Back in 1st grade, when they ask you what you want to be when you grow up, my answer was a dad. To me, dads are superheroes. Super strength, lightning speed, endless wisdom hidden under puns, a being so powerful the scariest monsters under the bed wouldn’t dare to mess with him. I wanted that.

In July of 2015, I got my wish.

My wife said, “It’s time to go.” We rushed into the car and a block away from the hospital I see the red and blue police lights behind me. I stop and yell back to the cop “My wife is in labor! If you’re gonna give me a ticket then do what you gotta do but give it to me a block up the road, I gotta go!” I hit the gas thinking he was gonna think I’m fleeing but he turned his lights off and turned around.

We get up to the room and are listening to the endless beep of my son’s heart monitor on my wife’s belly. All of a sudden the room goes silent….

“Did he move?”
“I don’t know.”
“Well, turn on your side or something.”
“Hunny, you should go get the nurse.”

I open the door and immediately got trampled by 12 nurses and doctors rushing in. Everyone starts calling out medical jargon, hooking up tubes, giving my wife oxygen, and most importantly: IGNORING MY QUESTIONS.

I yell “What’s going on?!” And the doctor says “Your son’s heart has stopped. It’s called a Heart Deceleration.”

The next 4 minutes felt like 40 years, and at that moment, I knew what it felt like to be a dad. To immediately be willing to trade places with my child, no matter the circumstances. To feel like I would go through anyone, even God himself, to protect my child. To this day I can’t even type out this story without breaking down into tears. It was the scariest moment of my life.

The doctors are able to get my son’s heart back pumping and it turns out the umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck three times, which is what caused the Decel.

My son Ryan was born at 10:46pm on July 15th.”

– Jacob Hord

Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email fatherfigures@thedad.com

Mario Kart Mobile Game Announced So You Can Pwn Your Kids on the Go

(Nintendo)

Grab your banana peels and variously-colored turtle shells—Mario Kart is coming to your mobile phone!

Nintendo made the announcement on Twitter in late January and ‘Kart’ fans everywhere are buzzing.

The game company tweeted:

The checkered flag has been raised and the finish line is near. A new mobile application is now in development: Mario Kart Tour! Releasing in the fiscal year ending in March 2019.

Unfortunately, the company recently delayed the game for a summer 2019 release “in order to improve quality of the application and expand the content offerings after launch,” but it is still most definitely on its way.

So far, Nintendo’s foray into the mobile gaming scene has been pretty hit-or-miss.

Its first mobile Mario title, Super Mario Run, launched in December 2016 and broke serious records with over 200 million downloads; however, according to analytics company App Annie, the very few paid the $10 it cost to access to the full game.

Other mobile Nintendo titles include Fire Emblem Heroes (2017), Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp (2017), and Dragalia Lost (2018), and an upcoming Dr. Mario title is expected to release for iOS and Android devices by mid-2019, just in case destroying them in virtual kart races isn’t enough.

Imagine pwning your kids at Mario Kart on mobile while inside a Mario World theme park? I can’t wait for the future!

The Gang Is Back for One Last Adventure in Toy Story 4 [WATCH TRAILER]

Toy Story 4 Trailer
(YouTube/Diney Pixar)

It’s hard to remember now, but there was a time when Pixar wasn’t a thing. There was a time when there wasn’t a new animated blockbuster emanating from the computer-animation studio every year or so to delight kids, impress adults, and basically make everyone cry. Nowadays, Pixar’s movies are among the most anticipated releases every summer, and this summer is no different.

Almost 25 years after their debut, Woody, Buzz and the gang are back for their final adventure in Toy Story 4.

The first Toy Story kicked off Pixar’s unprecedented run of animated blockbusters, which went on to include beloved flicks like Monsters Inc., Up, Inside Out, and the two Incredibles movies. And now the original cast of characters is back!

Last time around, the toys said goodbye to their beloved Andy, who grew up and went to college in Toy Story 3. The crew narrowly avoided a sinister daycare and a terrifying incinerator and safely landed in little Bonnie’s room. But the new movie finds them separated and embark on a road trip to reunite.

But does Woody want to?

Spurred on by Bonnie’s new toy, an arts and crafts creation/abomination named Forky, Woody ends up in an amusement park, loaded with rides, games, and countless kids every single day. And this time, tempted by old friend Little Bo Peep, Woody might not want to leave. But Buzz and friends are determined to bring their pal back.

Check out the full-length trailer, and try not to cry: