8 Real Lessons From My Southern Father

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I never considered myself a “daddy’s girl.” This was mainly because I didn’t know there was anything else to be. I didn’t know there was an option. I just kind of came out that way, I guess. This fact is much to the chagrin of my mother because I could be considered her spittin’ image. Fortunately, for all parties involved my Diddy (as we like to call him to his face and on the Internet) is a good man and there are much, much worse people to be fond of. Also, my mother would probably call herself a “daddy’s girl,” as well.

Over the course of my life my father has never shied away from an opportunity to teach me something. I choose to believe he’s taught me so many things because he wanted me to grow up and be independent and successful, but there’s a small part of me that believes he taught me to do so many things, so as he got older he would be asked to do less and less. He mostly succeeded in this effort, but for the life of me if I can’t get my hood to pop open or if the lawn mower doesn’t start I have to call him. And who understands a W-2 form better than a dad?

I don’t have children, so I use the Internet as a means to pass on all the wisdom my father has imparted to me. It is almost Father’s Day!

8 Actual Lessons from my Southern Father:

1. Wish in one hand, pee in the other, see which one fills up faster.

This one was a lot to grasp for my tween years, but once I finally figured it out, I knew I needed to spend more time doing and less time wishing for things to happen.

2. Something about the clutch and the brake.

Learn to drive a stick shift. At least enough to get you a few miles down a straight, flat road.

3. If you’re awake, be awake.

Even as a teenager I didn’t sleep in. In my house, if you were awake, you were awake. Might as well get out of bed and get the day started!

4. If you want something, go buy it.

After thoroughly researching the purchase and saving up for it, of course.

5. Never risk your life to save an animal’s.

I realize this lesson could incite a riot, but it just means– don’t kill yourself by swerving to miss a turtle! My dad used to always say, “I can buy a new car, but I can’t buy a new you.” (Side note: the car would’ve been a used car.)

6. Read the instructions.

If you’re going to spend money on something, you should probably know how it works. And for the love of God, don’t throw the instructions away. Ever.

7. If you’re too sick to work (or go to school), you’re too sick to party.

This one is a tough pill to swallow, but more than anything, I learned which days I should or shouldn’t fake being sick. And there’s not a fake sickness in the world to get you out of going to church.

8. Don’t ask a question if you don’t want an answer.

Ever the fan of honesty, I learned about Santa at the ripe age of six.

Even if your dad is relaying information to you that doesn’t seem like some of sort of lesson it probably is a lesson. That’s just what dads do. Some of them just do it better than others.