THE 70s and 80s were a golden age for dads. Here are some of your father’s weird, self-indulgent habits which were somehow considered normal back then.
Avoiding visitors by hiding in the loft
Nowadays people try to behave in a mature way with visitors they’re not that keen on. Your dad had a much bolder approach: hide in the loft. He’d spend ages up there, supposedly ‘checking the joists’ or some other bullshit task, just to avoid a five-minute chat with his brother-in-law about his caravan.
Certain chores were verboten for dads
In this era of relative equality, it would be odd for a male partner to never do the laundry. Not the case with your dad, for whom loading the washing machine was literally impossible to imagine, like getting married to a triangle.
Having one joke
This tiresome joke was something like ‘A Jamaican rabbit went into a pub and ordered a toastie…’ The main scenario would be repeated a tedious three times, followed by a confusing punchline he’d have to laboriously explain: ‘The rabbit dies of ‘mixing my toasties’. Myxomatosis!’ For some reason everyone laughed dutifully at this, when really it should have been nipped in the bud.
His opinions were infallible, like the Pope
And boy did he have a lot of opinions, invariably wrong. The Argies would defeat the task force and invade Cornwall, Charles and Di were the perfect couple, Uri Geller was no fraud. He even had the ability to tell if a TV programme you were enjoying was a ‘load of rubbish’ after watching five seconds of it, wisely making the whole family watch Match of the Day highlights instead.
Confidently dispensing crap advice to your kids
These days parents are urged to be sure they are giving the right advice. Your dad held forth freely on everything from injuries (‘Your ankle’s turning black… you need a dab of TCP on that’) to being bullied. At which point you trotted off happily to get the kicking of lifetime thanks to using a ‘deadly’ karate chop your dad saw on TV.
Basic conversational skills were unnecessary
If your dad wanted to talk about the boiler for half an hour, he would, even if everyone present clearly wanted to peel their faces off out of boredom. Tact was similarly unnecessary. If someone had died he’d see no problem with starting a bollocks conversation about ghosts, until your mum put on a quiet yet incredibly threatening voice and told him to shut up and get some more biscuits.