If the Dadabase were a Movie

Nine months.

I consider myself a “good movie connoisseur.” Because I know the criteria for what makes for a good movie, I have cleverly avoided dozens of lame movies during my lifetime.  If I’m going to invest 90 minutes or more of my life to a movie, it better be worth it.

When I watch a movie, it’s not simply a passive event.  For me, it’s a deeply involved event where I am eager to mentally bookmark subtle symbolism, look for nostalgic familiarity, and decide what deep message about life the movie is trying to convey.  A few prime examples of flawless movies that fit this criteria are Garden State, (500) Days of Summer, Away We Go and Sideways.

Combine my passion for good movies with my love for writing and that means it’s only natural for me to see different stages of my life as their own movie in which I am the narrator.  Never has my life been more of its own movie since I found out I was going to be a dad.  Since April 2009, my life really has been documented on a nearly daily basis, as it pertains to parenthood.

I view this Dadabase of my life as a movie and I imagine how that movie would play out.

As far as who would play me, I have to think back to all the actors that people have told me I remind them of. Coincidentally, my doppledangers all happen to be Jewish and right around the same frame and height (5′ 9″) as me: Paul Rudd, David Arquette, Don Adams/Inspector Gadget, Bronson Pinchot (played Balki on “Perfect Strangers,”) Shia LaBeouf, and brothers Fred and Ben Savage.  But I would ultimately cast the role to Joseph Gordon-Levitt as the best overall and most relevant fit.

Whereas I evidently resemble a plethora of 5’9″ Jewish actors, I can’t say that my wife has an obvious look-alike. But in the likeness of how Richard Gere and Julia Roberts, as well as, Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, have co-starred in multiple movies, I would cast Zooey Deschanel as my wife; reuniting the main characters of (500) Days of Summer. (Pictured below.)

Think of how every recent comic book-turned-movie starts out; as the opening credits are super-imposed over pages of the actual comic book.  For The Dadabase movie, “Sheep Go to Heaven” by Cake would play as the opening song, as you would see just my hands typing on a MacBook; overshadowed by actual shots of older blogs I have written.

This opening scene would span from April 2009 (when I first decided that I officially wanted to “become a writer”) until a year later (when we found out we were going to have a baby).  It was during that time that I was trying to find my niche, as a writer.  I tried specializing in health blogs (I found the cure for eczema, being healed of my own); writing a series on manhood and marriage, recaps of The Bachelor,  and even a series which questioned why marijuana is an illegal drug, from the perspective of a guy who has never himself used it, but believes it should be legalized.

But it wasn’t until I decided to become the first guy in history to regularly and publicly document my thoughts as a dad, starting from the moment my wife and I went public with the pregnancy, that my writings gained a broad and consistent following.

That idea itself would be the whole “point” of the movie: that I found my purpose and my niche, simply by becoming a dad.

All the hundreds of blog posts I had written (nearly 500) before fatherhood had simply prepared me to find my voice as a writer and as a dude.

The Dadabase movie would include several subplots, like the move to Alabama, but ultimately, it would sort of be like The Social Network meets Marley and Me meets Mr. Belvedere.

Oh, and here’s one of my favorite parts about planning this imaginary movie: the movie poster. A story I never shared before on The Dadabase is that when my son Jack was a newborn and my wife and I were unemployed, at the house all day with him, when my wife was asleep I often found myself in the predicament of a full bladder but little time or opportunity to relieve myself because my arms were literally full as I held my son.

So I learned that I was able to carefully hold him in one arm while taking care of business with the other.  Therefore, the movie poster would simply show Joseph Gordon-Levitt from the back, in front of a toilet, holding a baby who is watching the water splash down below.

The Dadabase.  The movie.  Coming Fall 2012.

(Or easily, never.)

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  1. by Kristen

    On August 19, 2011 at 9:08 pm

    Your movie poster cracked me up! How many of us parents can relate to that – mom or dad!!

  2. by Nick Shell

    On August 19, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    Thanks Kristen :)

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