Why This Dad Will Still Be An Idiot 5 Years From Now

14 months.

Last weekend my wife and I watched a movie on Netflix that evidently no one has seen but us and Taylor Swift, who recently promoted it on the radio:

It’s called Happythankyoumoreplease. Near the end, the protagonist, played by Josh Radnor of How I Met Your Mother, shares this very relevant and true-to-life concept:

“This writer that I knew once told me this great thing. He said that every five years he realizes what an [idiot] he was five years ago. Every five years, like clockwork, he goes, ‘Man, I was such an [idiot] five years ago.’ So if we accept this, that means, everything we think and feel and say now, in five years, will just be… embarrassing.”

Welcome to my life. For most recent 20 of the 30 years of my existence, I have been looking back a few years at the “more naive” version of myself, patting myself on the back for no longer being that out-of-touch, irrelevant, and immature.

Yes, this is something I’m always thinking about. So basically I’m constantly living in this illusion that I finally am getting things figured out.

But unlike the cast of the Eighties’ sitcom, Head of the Class, I’m the guy roaming the hallways who is simply trying to find the class, much less be the head of it.

Granted, this “too little, too late” situation I get trapped in totally translates into my life as a dad. I look back to when my wife was pregnant with our son and think, “I said some pretty embarrassing stuff. I kind of made an idiot of myself.”

Who was I to say that my wife would definitely not get an epidural
or was going to breast feed that long or that we would let our son sleep in the bed with us?

Wrong, wrong, and wrong again. I didn’t know what I was talking about for a lack of experience: It was just speculation.

And this raises a great point about everything I write about here on this blog: Am I just being an idiot with every 400 word dose I toss out each day?

As a dad, I feel it’s my duty to nail down the plan as far as how I plan to raise my son. I need a plan.

I get it- plans backfire. But parenting isn’t something you can just wander into and hope it all works out.

Because if anything is naive, that is. I’d rather talk too much than do too little.


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  1. by Joe

    On April 29, 2012 at 10:52 pm


    “In the end, however, I am still sticking to my beliefs on why I personally support circumcision, for the very reasons I have already explained. So while you did win the debate for the world to see, you didn’t win me over.
    That’s not a lack on your part; you can’t help my resoluteness…”


    I’m gonna bring this up to you in 5 years. ;-)

  2. by Joe

    On April 29, 2012 at 10:54 pm

    [note the smiley-face icon in the corner--without it, that post sounds a lot harsher than it was intended to be]. -Joe {insert another smiley-face here}

  3. by Nick Shell

    On April 29, 2012 at 11:31 pm

    Sounds good. I promise I’ll still be an idiot.

  4. by Joe

    On April 30, 2012 at 6:03 am

    That’s cool, but hopefully it’ll be about something else.