|Dads. There's no one quite like them.|
An animated series aired several years ago, to great praise and equally great censure.
Because of the negative and very vocal comments, I chose not to watch.
For three years.
One evening, while working in my office, next to the TV room, I caught a few snatches of conversation coming from the program presently airing.
Two older children were asking their father why there were no pictures of their third and last sibling.
"Didn't you want her?" one of them asked.
It caught me because I am guilty of snapping thousands of pics of our eldest. Hundreds of our second, and then, progressively (or is it de-gressively?) less as each child made an appearance.
I made up for it with the last, when we were back into the thousands, but those in the middle . . . lost out.
The premise intrigued me.
I went to check it out.
Imagine my surprise when I realized that what was playing was an episode of 'that cartoon'.
But I was hooked by the subject matter.
I sat with my teenagers to watch.
The father reassured his children that he had, indeed, wanted their baby sister. Then he proceeded to tell the story.
He had left a terrible job in a nuclear plant and had been working at his dream job in a bowling alley. His work was appreciated and made him, for the first time in his life, happy.
Then his wife announced that baby number three was on the way.
He knew that what he earned at his dream job couldn't possibly support another child.
He would have to go and beg for his old job back.
Have I mentioned that it was horrible?
That he hated it?
Well, it was.
And he did.
Moving on . . .
When one faced the front entrance of the nuclear plant, they were presented with two doors.
One for new workers.
One for returning.
The 'returning' door was small. So small that anyone entering through it was forced to do so on their hands and knees.
Thus, on their knees, they could beg for employment.
It made quite an impression.
I kept watching.
Of course he was given his old job back.
And, of course, humiliated with every step.
Finally, seated once more in his old office, he was presented with a plaque which read: 'Don't Forget. You're Here Forever.'
This was fastened permanently to the wall directly in front of his console, where he wouldn't fail to see it.
Back to the two elder children and their conversation.
"So why are there no pictures?"
And his reply, "Oh there are pictures, kids. Lots and lots of pictures. They're where I need them!"
And then you get a view of his office as it looks now.
On every wall and, indeed, all available surfaces, are pictures of the little girl, in every stage of development.
And they cover much of the plaque.
Which now reads, 'Do It For Her'.
It made me think about all of the fathers who go, every day, to a job they hate, just to feed and care for their families.
They are our unsung heroes.
We need to do more singing.