Whether it’s funny, awesome, or just plain sweet, everyone has a story about their dad.
This piece is based on a couple of AskReddit threads. Links on the last page.
1. Highbrow, no brow.
When I was a baby he burnt his eyebrows off cooking on a grill
It wasn’t until I was in high school that my mom told me this story, and I laughed, and she was like, “Wait, nobody ever told you this before?”
I said, “No, but why would they?”
She just looked at me like I was crazy and said, “You never asked why your dad didn’t have eyebrows?”
I had gone my whole life never realizing my dad didn’t have eyebrows.
In fact, I didn’t believe her when she told me and thought she was just doing a mom joke. When we got home though I saw for myself. They just didn’t grow back. As a consequence I can no longer ever take him seriously.
2. Orange you glad.
He once ran away from home, but returned 20 minutes later because he wanted an orange.
3. Nice phrasing, dad.
My dad once sent me a text that just said: “Your mother has left me.” Turned out she had gone to the cinema with her friend and he wanted me to call him because he was bored.
4. Life is a highway.
My dad’s picture was in the very first issue of Life Magazine (November 1936) under the title, “Life Begins.” The picture was taken seconds after he was born.
For the very last issue of Life Magazine, they planned to include a picture of him again, but he died the day the photographer was scheduled to take his picture. They went ahead with a tribute article. The title of that article was “Life Ends.”
5. Bring a helmet.
My parents were set up on a blind date by mutual friends. When he called my mum to set up the date, he asked her if she had a crash helmet (like for a motorcycle). He has never owned a motorcycle or anything requiring a crash helmet. He just wanted her to think he was cool. They’re celebrating their 34th wedding anniversary next Sunday, so it worked out okay.
6. Only in Australia.
My dad, while midway through a pee, once got kicked over by a kangaroo.
7. *That’s* lucky.
500 guys started in his division in the Korean War, only 7 came home. He was one of the 7.
8. Needs a toe truck.
He was awarded a medal for safely landing a burning helicopter on an aircraft carrier. And hes got some seriously crooked toes.
9. Non sequitur.
When I was a kid he would randomly say the punchlines of some jokes that only he knew the rest of, like “ham sandwich” or “seventeen” – when we would ask him why those things were funny he would say he would tell us the joke when we were older. We’re both adults now and he’s never told us.
10. The new guy.
My dad was the general manager of a small manufacturing plant back in the 80s. They made “foam packing products for industry.”
He treated his employees very well, and whenever some outside group would send in union ringers to try and organize the plant, the employees would kick them out. He kept his shop non-union by offering better pay and conditions than the union could.
Then my dad died.
Many years later – 17 to be exact – my mom went to a retirement party for one of the longest serving employees.
She was sitting at a table with a bunch of old-timers, and they were all swapping stories about my dad. About the time he bailed that one guy out of jail. About that time he bought Christmas presents for that one family who had hit hard times. About the fishing trips he used to take people on. All along, there was this one guy at the end of the table who got more and more agitated at every story. Eventually, he got up in a huff and stormed off.
My mom asked “so what’s his problem?”
They responded “oh, he’s the new guy.”
He was hired on as the new manager after my father had died. Despite being in charge for 17 years, he was still “the new guy,” and hated being compared with my dad.
11. Fe mail.
He will often receive mail aimed at female audiences addressed as Miss/Ms/Mrs due to his gender neutral first name. My sister and I have scored far too many coupons for mascara and hair products all thanks to him. Love you Dad.
12. Does he love donuts?
The man is likeable to the point it annoys me. He started out as a janitor, and simply because he got along well with everyone and his boss wanted him to stay employed he ended in a position of power for a nuclear energy plant. Even he admits he doesn’t know what his job exactly was, just that he got paid to make sure the power kept working.
13. Poly sci.
My dad is in a polyamorous relationship with two other guys. 25 years strong. I love those guys and am so glad my dad is happy and comfortable with his lifestyle.
14. He *can* talk to whales though.
He moved to Sweden and learned Swedish in 3 years. But he never learned Welsh in the 46 years he lived in Wales.
15. Nice work if you can get it.
He got paid not to work an entire summer while he was in college.
Back in the late ’60s, he got a job as a private chauffeur for this old guy who was either the President or Founder of some company. This fellow was elderly, and the job was cushy enough as it was – basically just ferry this guy from his house to his business, where he would shuffle around and pretend to still run things, then drive him back at the end of the day.
Then a disgruntled (former?) employee sued the company, and hired the law firm that my grand-dad worked for. Grand-dad wasn’t even on the case, but to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest, the law firm paid my Dad the couple hundred bucks (this was the ’60s, after all) he would have earned that summer so he would quit.
16. Civil rights icon.
The very first paper published in an American law review to argue in favor of the legalization of homosexuality was written by my father.
17. Stuff my dad says.
Growing up, he told me and my brother lot of crazy, unbelievable stuff and about 3/4 of it was completely true. When I was little I thought he just did it to mess with us but now I realize he’s been training me my whole life to fact check things that sound like bull.
Also, he had all kinds of phrases and sayings that I grew up thinking were completely normal, and once I went to college and was using them I realized that no, the proper response to the question “how long until ___” is NOT “How long does it take a one eyed, one legged monkey to shingle a doghouse with pancakes”. Thanks dad.
18. The family jewels.
My dad got stabbed by his ex-wife, jumped out of a third story window to escape, broke his foot, then proceeded to drive to the hospital while he was bleeding. Oh, and he did all of this while he was completely naked.
19. Got Seoul and he is a soldier.
My dad was deployed to Seoul Korea when I was diagnosed with cancer. As soon as my mom called to tell him, he was on a plane headed back to the States. He went AWOL.
He left without telling anyone, just hopped on the soonest flight he could catch. Risked being imprisoned to come back to see me. Once he got to the hospital he took me to the cafeteria and we had cheese eggs. He was crying while eating them. It was about ten at night. There’s other great stories about him, but that one I will carry with me forever.
20. Wink wink.
A couple years into college, a girl my dad knew transferred to his school. He ran into her, and they talked a bit, and she asked “so, what’s a girl got to do to get a date around here?”
40 years later, he told this story, and only then did he realize she was hinting that he should ask her out.
Ladies, men are that dense. Your hints aren’t obvious enough, no matter what you think!
21. Excuses are key.
When my dad first met my mom and asked her on a date he had a full 70s style mustache. When he picked her up for their first date he no longer had a mustache. He told my mom that he just didn’t like having facial hair anymore. In reality he had burnt it off the night before taking flaming shots of tequila. Love that guy.
22. The right side of history.
He grew up in the segregated south. Graduated from an all white high school and all that.
His best friend was Mexican. On Friday nights they went to the Black high school’s football games wearing sombreros. He played football with some of the guys from that team on the weekends, too. I found out about all this from the father of a classmate who had played ball with him. He actually got in fights with other white kids because of his associations. (This was back in the early 60s.)
23. Playing with the boys.
My dad got a trophy for winning the sand volleyball league while he was in prison when I was 4. He displayed it on his dresser for about 4 years after he got out.
24. I been workin’ on the railroad.
My dad used to work for a railway’s company, so sometimes he would spend nights working in the middle of nowhere. One of those nights he met two guys wearing the company’s uniform, but he didn’t know them. They asked him for directions and my dad politely answered. When they were gone, police officers showed up.
The cops asked him if he had seen two men whose description matched with those guys he met, turns out the guys had just escaped from a high security prison.
25. Hate is a powerful motive.
My dad finished his masters in computer science in 7 months because he hated his hometown and wanted to escape as soon as possible.
26. WORDS MATTER, DAD.
My dad called me in the middle of the night to tell me my brother didn’t make it. (My brother was climbing Everest and had to be helicoptered back to Nepal because he was suffering from really bad altitude sickness.)
Yes he didn’t make it to the top, but he didn’t die Dad. Poor use of words.
27. Get off my lawn.
My dad chopped off his big toe with the mower. He has also flipped at least 10 riding mowers. I think its safe to say he has recurring issues with any device that cuts grass.
28. Soup nazi.
He once broke up with a girl because she liked pea soup. It was in the senior high cafeteria and she got the side of pea soup for lunch. Said that really grossed him out but he was willing to look past it because he thought she was really attractive. She went back for seconds. Upon returning to the table he told her it just wasn’t gonna work out. I heard this story after my grandma made pea soup one time and I complained that I didn’t like the stuff. “That’s my son alright.”
My dad tried to remove an underground yellow jacket nest in our back yard by setting it on fire. It was not his finest hour.
So, he pours some gas in while my mom watches from the kitchen window. This should have been enough, but no, he took it one step further by lighting a match, stepping away, and throwing it into the nest. Little did he know, the yellow jackets would have the last laugh.
As their final moments approached, the ground burst open, sending not only dirt chunks flying, but releasing flaming yellow jackets which proceeded to chase my terrified father a good distance before finally succumbing to the flames. All while my mom laughed herself to tears in the kitchen.
30. The seer.
My dad has correctly predicted the divorce of every couple he’s known who got divorced. I think he’s 7 for 7 now. He’s too polite to tell people their marriage won’t last, though.
31. Were you raised in a manger?
His mom and dad are named Mary and Joseph. Responds “yes?” to anyone who says “oh my God.”