With a house-full of "popular middle school girls" so cocksure of themselves and so ready to pounce on any adult indiscretion, I'll admit I had great empathy for the nebbish dad in this commercial.
The image of an ever-present tribunal of 13-year-old judges following my every move and ready to evaluate my actions like the perennially unforgiving Romanian gymnastics coach struck a nerve with me and I found myself grinning when I saw it for the first time.
I don't know where they found the young actresses, but I'd be willing to bet at least two of them have been to our house once or twice. The one with the camera, yeah, I know her.
We sure give in to them, don't we? The slightest look of youthful reproach can sterilize a dad, and send a college-educated mom to her room for a week -- suffering from self-imposed pangs of guilt or conscience she hasn't felt since she was, well, thirteen.
I'll call one such dad Ed, as in -- rhymes with "dead," which Ed wishes he was after a run-in with his daughter's Girl Patrol during one particularly beery party in Lamorinda.
Seems there were a lot of people at the party and some good beer. As often happens with these neighborhood gatherings, the line for the bathrooms got a little long and Ed's need for relief grew short. Ed looked around for a solution and settled on a bush behind the house, turning from his manly duty to find his daughter and two of her friends watching in disbelief -- and youthful scorn. The fact that Ed had sagely stuffed a hot dog into his mouth to keep his hands free while irrigating his neighbor's backyard probably didn't help matters. Now, run the attached video -- taking away the girl with the camera (no camera present, thank God) -- and there you have it. Eww. Seriously? So gross...
Mortified, Ed's beloved daughter disowned him on the spot, took out adoption papers naming her BFF's parents as beneficiaries of her love (they're waaay cooler) and let it be known that Ed would be old and grey before she would ever deign to forgive him, and that he would still have to buy her a car first.
The moral of the story? Pick your spots well and don't let your daughter or her friends catch you or you will end up wishing a slavering pack of wild dogs had you in their jaws instead.
Why do we give our young so much power over us? Why, they own us, of course, and they know that no matter what you do or say that they're right and we're just, well, old.
But that doesn't stop me from reminding them that they are growing older every day and that they will become adults and that more likely than not they will do something that makes their kids go Eww, so cut us some slack while we do the parenting thing, okay?
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