All She Wrote: Stray cats: A decalogue for divorced dads

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by Nicole Crews

Mom: So tell me about your love life.

Me: I’m too busy and focused to have one. Though it seems my porch has become the repository for divorced dads.

Mom: Is that like match.com but without dinner?

Me: Pretty much. They’re like cats. You take pity and feed one and all of a sudden your yard is full of them.

Mom: I’ve seen all of that hippy food you eat. I don’t think that’s the draw.

Me: Yeah, I don’t think my beetcake brings all the boys to the yard.

Mother: Please tell me you aren’t sleeping with any of them.

Me: Mother, my vagina is so neglected, Sarah McLachlan is going to do a PSA about it.

In a controversial era of gay marriage debate — for which I am an absolute advocate — I also find myself wholeheartedly defending the institution for boring old heteros. You see there’s a divorced-dad epidemic out there, and it must be stopped.

These Bitter Bobs, Sad Tads, Lonely Tonys and Retro Romeos are cluelessly roaming the streets, and unless they are forcibly ushered to the altar, it’s just going to get worse. Even more disturbing is that, unbeknownst to me, a club of them has formed on my front porch. And since, apparently, there is no other sensible female around to guide them, I offer these Ten Commandments to follow for the duration of their singledom:

1. Thou shalt not kill precious time by describing how the Hobby Lobby boycott has put a crimp on your ex’s crafting. It’s creepy enough that you use it as a verb. And that your ex wields a glue gun. And that you are still telling unsolicited stories about her.

2. Thou shalt not wear cargo pants, braided belts, phone clips, pinky rings, flip-flops or tennis shoes without laces if you ever intend to have sex again.

3. Thou shalt not take your ex-wife’s name in vain. Talking about what a bitch your ex is in no way ingratiates you to me or any other woman.

4. Honor your duties as father but don’t tell boring stories about your daughter’s decoupage project, your son’s soccer schedule or anything to do with head lice.

5. Thou shalt not date online if your profile picture is a creepy selfie taken in your bathroom. And, we know you are proud of those arms playa, but unless you are a male gymnast or stripper, lose the tank top.

6. Thou shalt not bear false witness against your past. We all live in an era of transparency and we’re going to find out eventually.

7. Thou shalt not show up empty-handed or unannounced at any woman’s house. Ever. A glass of wine in hand does not an open house make.

8. Thou shalt not be a terrible kisser. Poking your tongue in someone’s face like a wombat does not constitute kissing. Pay a hooker if you have to, but learn how.

9. Thou shalt not whine. Perhaps the least attractive trait in any human being, whining is especially grotesque on a grown man. See a therapist.

10. Honor thy neighbor’s Sabbath and Saturday. Just because you can smell the coffee brewing and the New York Times is in her lap, it does not mean she wants you to come over.