Go Ask Daddy About Expectations, Goofy Dogs and American Footy Across the Pond

photo credit: A Little Rancor via photopin (license)
photo credit: A Little Rancor via photopin (license)

I’m teaching my girls that double standards just don’t exist.

GAD GRAPHICStandards are way more than double. There’s a set of expectations, high and low, fair and unfair, that probably existed far back enough that guys like Augustus and the guy who was the Beatles drummer before Ringo Starr had to stop and say, “what’s up with that?”

Rather than model for my girls that a different set of standards is something to whine about, I’ll try to show them the upside of being held to a higher standard.

How’m I doing? Oh, I’ll let you know, in 111 years or so.

1. Why do people make a big deal if a boy does a one-handed cartwheel, but if a girl does it, it’s no big deal?

photo credit: Image from page 144 of "Street Arabs and gutter snipes. The pathetic and humorous side of young vagabond life in the great cities, with records of work for their reclamation" (1884) via photopin (license)
photo credit: Image from page 144 of “Street Arabs and gutter snipes. The pathetic and humorous side of young vagabond life in the great cities, with records of work for their reclamation” (1884) via photopin (license)

Know how you used to giggle when I wore purple? “That’s a GIRL color, daddy!” you’d say. (It’s also the Rockies’ primary color. Hmm.) Boys are expected to take karate, play baseball and throw rocks; Girls are expected to take gymnastics, play Barbies and throw fits.

When a girl rips a perfect spiral at the park for an outdoor music fest, dads marvel at her skill. A boy who throws a spiral might draw criticism (especially if his name is Tim Tebow, with a hitch in his delivery.)

Society says a girl should be able stick a front aerial flip while baking sweet potato pie by age 2. It says a boy who masters a somersault by age 12 is a master, indeed.

There’s no solution. But the girl who can turn the one-handed cartwheel *and* rip that perfect spiral is one after my heart from the start.

2. Do they have to tell you if someone dies in a house?


It depends on the state of the union the house is in.

No states require home sellers to tell you if someone died of natural causes. If an uncle died in the living room of a heart attack, for instance. If someone died by electrocution because your wiring dangled from the ceiling in the shower, well, you’d have to disclose that, because they died because of unsafe conditions in the house.

Depending on the state, a violent death, say, by Colonel Mustard in the ballroom with a lead pipe, you should mention that. No one wants Mr. Boddy haunting their new digs.

3. What does a Skye Terrier look like?

photo credit: Greyfriar's Bobby via photopin (license)
photo credit: Greyfriar’s Bobby via photopin (license)

See picture left.

To me, a Skye Terrier looks like a lot of the boys at your school with the floppy hair. They have those silly-ass ears on which you’re not sure where ear ends and hair takes over. Move their bangs aside, and they look curiously like Jeff Bridges.

They have legs like a sawed-off coffee table, although I’m reasonably sure no one has ever seen a Skye Terrier’s legs, actually.

They’re usually hidden, like whoever holds the wires and has his hand in Kermit the Frog.

4. If you get a tattoo and then a suntan and then get your tattoo removed, will it show?

I tried to sketch my dream tat. Maybe it's for the best.
I tried to sketch my dream tatt. Maybe it’s for the best.

Suntans would be the least of your worries if you’ve had a tattoo removed. Let’s say after 11 or so rums and Cokes, I got that Mad Woody Woodpecker tat I rattle on about at times, on my left biceps. Then let’s say I lounged out on Playa Tortugas and just long enough to get all honey-roasted-er.

Let’s say in two weeks, I decided against the otherwise permanent fixture of my skin. Let’s say I found a tattoo-removal artist in downtown Cancun and did the deed, but still had that killer tan.

My skin likely will scar during tat removal. It might not be pretty.

Scars are made of second-rate skin. They don’t tan, but they can burn. Exposed long enough, they’ll just get darker, which will make it look like a dark version of the tat I paid to remove in the first place.

The moral of the story here is if you’re going to get tatted up, at least go for something you’ll want to keep around. Either in the colorful form, or the painful, sandblasted removal and permanently sun damaged version.

5. How do NFL players adjust to the time change when they play in London?

This is my attempt to sketch Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith as one of those dudes who guard Buckingham Palace. Yeah.
This is my attempt to sketch Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith as one of those dudes who guard Buckingham Palace. Yeah.

Let’s first look inside the numbers:

256 | Games in an NFL season

136 | Computers needed to create the NFL schedule

32 | NFL teams

17 | Weeks in the season

3 | NFL games in London

This season, games in London will start at 2:15 p.m. local time. That’ll feel like 9:15 a.m. to East Coast teams and 10:15 a.m. to the Detroit Lions and Kansas City Chiefs, the teams this season playing from the Central Time Zone. This is roughly the same time a guy like Pacman Jones wraps up his club crawl.

You lose a night’s sleep traveling to Europe. Seasoned travelers prepare by adjusting their sleep schedule a week or so before departure, getting up and going to bed earlier by 30 minutes each day.

Eat light on departure day (wait, what??), don’t get hammered, and don’t drive when you get there.

Unless you’re Alex Smith and you find yourself driving your Kansas City Chiefs offense down the Wembley Stadium grass late in the game against the Detroit Lions. Then you just have to do it.

Different standards and all.

london quote



  1. Once again you are my hero and couldn’t love all your answers, especially #1, which just proves what I already knew that you are an awesome girl dad – always 😉

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Just a dude with a blog and a ratty #1 Dad shirt that I’ll never surrender, that’s all.

  2. claywatkins says:

    There all sorts of double standards out there for our kids. I have a girl and boy… Just realized I put girl before boy even though chronologically the boy is first. Girl is better natural athlete – boy has more grit and perseverance. As a teacher – I will tell you that I prefer girl student-athletes to boy student-athletes, there just nicer and better students. The key is setting the bar high for all of our kids. As for football in London, Steve is right – it would be a dumb move and the London team would have a disadvantage or unfair advantage. Hadn’t really thought about it, thanks for pushing me there.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Some double (or triple) standards are necessary – I want for my girls to aim for higher things than the status quo in some ways, especially in those ways they also want that.

      Ego plays a role, as does entitlement, bitterness, kindness and selflessness. You can find these attributes in just about anyone – which float to the top?

      I tell my teams and players and daughters that their only rival is their old self. Be better than her, smarter than her, more compassionate than her.

      On the field, judge your performance based on your last. And your effort.

      Notice the league’s marquee teams don’t go to London? There are no Packers-Patriots matchups. Blackpool vs. Wigan Athletic isn’t exactly Chelsea vs. Manchester City.

  3. ksbeth says:

    great tattoo advice, and as for the lions in london…….)

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      What if the Lions move there, Beth?

  4. Kim says:

    I didn’t know they had NFL games across the pond… Huh.

    Then again, I don’t know a lot about football. Take our wedding day, for example. Lots more traffic than we could figure – and not an open hotel room for hundreds of miles in any direction. Yeah… We double booked town with the Superbowl.

  5. tamaralikecamera says:

    I wonder if Des will ever look like Jeff Bridges. I prefer it over Jim Carey’s character in Dumb & Dumber, though. I’ve seen people give their kids that haircut. That should be criminal. Criminal! Like Miss Scarlet in the lead pipe in the library.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I meant Beau Bridges! He has furrier eyebrows. I’ve seen some lousy haircuts here in Carolina, too. You think they do it between here and there, too?

  6. Rorybore says:

    I can do a one handed cartwheel and throw a spiral. 🙂
    I’m also smart enough to put my tattoo in a place where the sun don’t shine. LOL

    wait? what did I miss? Why is Football going to London?

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Nice Rore! Where’s your tatt?

      The NFL (not CFL) plays a few games in London every season. English fans are wising up to the game, too.

      At first, they cheered punts and booed the victory formation.

      1. Rorybore says:

        lower pelvic bone. and yes it hurt like @#$#$*U

        oh those silly English! *grabs NFL play book, searches table of contents*

      2. Eli Pacheco says:

        And we always send them our lousiest teams, Rore … no offense, beth.

  7. Dana says:

    Damn those double standards – it’s tricky navigating them when you have a son and a daughter. Although sometimes it’s easier to do it, because my kids are always worried about everything being fair and equal.

    Neither one can do a one-handed cartwheel, though. Have I failed as a mother?

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      It’s not like we can ignore double standards, but we can better prepare our kids for them.

      My girls have played against boys all their lives, and have to be convinced that boys are created equal, too.

      I’m not a big fan of Grace’s one-handed cartwheels. It seems like one slip from a broken nose. So you haven’t failed a bit.

  8. A.PROMPTreply says:

    Boy, they do keep you busy……do they have to tell you if someone died in a house? OMG. Where do they come up with this stuff? Love your answers as always, Eli. Will you adopt me?

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      There was a murder a few years ago in our neighborhood, and that question came up when new people moved in.

      You wouldn’t believe some of the stuff … have I told you about the Would You Die For Me post yet, Torrie?

      I will adopt you, but you’ll have to fight for your slices of pizza around here. Keep a low center of gravity and don’t be afraid to use your elbows.

      1. A.PROMPTreply says:

        Oh, have not heard about that post…….but have noted your advices on how to score pizza after adoption! LOL.

      2. Eli Pacheco says:

        Just know I’ll be fighting for the slices, too! And here’s the link to that post:

  9. Jet-lag is a bitch.

    That’s all.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      I hope to find out myself someday.

  10. I LOVE question #2! And regarding tattoos, I got a sunflower on my side when I was 18 years old–you know, because sunflowers were all the rage when I was 18 years old–and one of my guy friends, when I lifted the side of my shirt and showed him, goes, “Dude, it looks like a bird shit on your side.” My husband didn’t notice it for a long time while we were dating (because I was such a good girl, obvi, and he never saw me naked–riiiiigh), but when he did, he goes,”What the hell IS that?” Ahhh…best decision I ever made. I mean the tattoo, not the husband. Okay–the husband is alright, too. 🙂

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      Thanks Shay! Hilarious about the sunflower tat. If you’ve never blogged about that … what are you waiting for?

  11. kismaslife says:

    # 1 is my favorite and while I cannot do a cartwheel, I completed my first 4wd trip on a trail rated a 6-7 without hurting anyone or rolling the jeep, and baked an apple pie for the same trip!

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      That’s just bad-ass, Tiffany. Simply bad-ass.

  12. cathy says:

    There will always be double standards…it’s human nature to compare apples and oranges and try to make it look logical. But if more parents were like you Eli, that nasty old double standard wouldn’t hold our kids back. They would blow a raspberry at it and do their own thing.

    1. Eli Pacheco says:

      You’re right about double standards, Cathy. It’s more important what my kids – think of themselves than how they measure up to a standard. I think their own standards are right on target.

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