Dad Is Fat

Jim Gaffigan is the first to admit he’s not perfect, but who needs perfection when you’ve got funny as hell? If one of those mommy blog compilation books (e.g., “Confessions of a Scary Mommy”) mated with the transcript of a stand-up comedy routine, “Dad Is Fat” would be the love child. Gaffigan admittedly offers up zero successful parenting strategies, knowingly includes a few less-than-enlightened remarks (like generalizing about women’s natural ability to nurture), and goes a little overboard with direct address (a.k.a., “breaking the fourth wall”). Yet his astute observations regarding parental phenomena (the “Are You Done Yet?” chapter is particularly insightful) and the plethora of one-to-two liners that compelled me to literally LOL make “Dad Is Fat” a must-read for any parent who has (or desires to have) a sense of humor.

And now for a sampling of my favorite Gaffiganisms:

  • “I always found those Anne Geddes baby-flower photos annoying, and it kind of puts me in a good mood to see a teenager fall off a skateboard. How could someone like me ever hope to be a good parent?”
  • “Whatever [pregnant women] are doing, they are also always growing a baby. Even when they are sleeping, they are growing a baby. They are constantly multitasking. I’m often not even tasking.”
  • “The midwife had all the necessary medical items for a home birth with her and told me to warm some towels and cover the things that we didn’t want blood on. Um, okay. ‘Blood on’? I’d never attended a birth, let alone a home birth. So I went to work. When the midwife and Jeannie eventually returned from the bathroom to the living room, they started laughing. Well, Jeannie was making pain noises, but there were some laughterlike sounds in her pain noises. I had put a shower curtain on the floor [and] covered the couches and our new flat-screen TV with garbage bags. The midwife asked, ‘What do you think is going to happen in here?’”
  • “Occasionally, a dog will be presented as some training method for having a baby. . . . This is a little like testing the waters of being a vegetarian by having lettuce on your burger.”
  • “All moms seem[] simultaneously tireless and on the brink of exhaustion.”
  • “When Marre was two, I was in line at a crowded New York City grocery store, and I gave her a sippy cup of juice in a futile attempt to stop a meltdown. She bellowed at the top of her lungs, ‘I don’t like jews!’ Thank God, we live in New York City and my family looks like Hitler’s fantasy. Otherwise, that would’ve been pretty awkward.”
  • “Toddlers are a virus’s best friend. Viruses are usually spread by close contact and saliva. If you look up the definition of toddler, the first thing it should say is ‘close contact and saliva.’”
  • “Nothing in my life has ever been as important as pushing the elevator button is to my three year-old.”
  • “Since Jeannie is a big believer in attachment parenting and I’m a spineless coward, we have an open-door policy, meaning if one of our kids has a nightmare, they are welcome to come in our room and pee in our bed.”
  • “The nap during the day for a three-year-old becomes a payday loan.”
  • “[T]here is no difference between a four-year-old eating a taco and throwing a taco on the floor. The amount of food on the floor under the table where a kid is eating could be the solution to world hunger.”
  • “I’m so tired that the other day I tried to open my front door with my wallet.”
  • “Even more important than not arguing or cursing, a parent should never say the words ‘ice cream’ in front of young children. Little kids only hear a commitment. ‘Yeah, I’ll have ice cream.’ You can’t explain to them, ‘Daddy was just saying the words ‘ice cream.’ It doesn’t mean we are having it right now. Do you understand?’ They will, of course, nod and say, ‘I’ll have chocolate.’”

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