You probably spent months preparing for Mother's Day, right? Emails flying back and forth between you, your sibling, and your Dad, all to coordinate a lovely Mother's Day brunch. "Where’s it going to be?" "Is it too late to get a reservation there?!" "Do they give Mom free flowers?!" "Will she be allergic to those flowers?!" It's all part and parcel of the day.
But when it comes to Father's Day, we all just assume that we'll head over to his place in the afternoon and he'll grill up some steaks or something. We tell ourselves that this is OK, because dads love grilling... right?
This year, shock the heck outta him by actually bringing him a gift! We're not saying you should go overboard. In fact, here's a list of things you can pick up at the absolute last minute. Yes, it'll be obvious to your old man that you've put very little thought into his gift, but "very little" is still better than your usual "none."
Say It With Flowers
Everyone gets Mom flowers, maybe your dad feels left out? (Actually, according to our latest poll, he probably doesn't.) Well, no matter how pop feels about flowers, the fact is that there are no lines for them on Father's Day. Unlike on Mother's Day, you won't be fighting against other last-minuters at the florist / deli / supermarket / cemetery (free flowers are just lying around everywhere in there).
Take advantage of that stress-free shopping experience and just get him some bloomin' blooms. If it doesn't go over well, laugh uncomfortably and say, "Heh. Yeah. I'm kidding... I actually got you this ..." (open your wallet and take out the largest bill you have) "... $5 bill!"
Dad's Got Gas
For some reason, fathers are always concerned about gas. We mean petrol. So why not get your dad a gallon of gas? Just stop by a supermarket on your way to Father's Day dinner and pick up a gallon of milk, empty it out in the parking lot, then stop at the gas station and fill 'er up! Warning: Gasoline will probably eat through the thin plastic of a milk jug, so be prepared for that fun, flammable experience! But it's the thought that counts.
Delay the Inevitable
Tell him that what you got couldn't be wrapped because it's not a thing, but an experience. The trade-off here is that the cheap thing you didn't buy essentially turns into an expensive thing you have to buy later! It's better if you don't leave the "what" up to the last minute, so think ahead. Can you afford a day of golf next month? Or something grander? You do not want to hear yourself blurt out something wallet-breaking when the moment comes. "Uh... uh... DEEP SEA FISHING ON THE MOON!" Pricey.
Give a Man a Fish...
Is your dad a fisherman? Did it rain the night before Father's Day? Scour your yard and surrounding sidewalks for worms and put them in a fancy envelope. ("Manila" is considered fancy, right?) Then tell him that it's some kind of high-end imported bait. Yeah, imported from your lawn! (Don't say this last bit out loud.)
Start by failing to even show up on Father's Day. When mom calls to ask where you are, ask her to put dad on. (Remember to hold the phone away from your ear as she screams for your father to come to the phone.) Once pop is on the horn, explain to him that your gift to him, this year, is staying out of his hair so that he can do what he loves to do on a Sunday afternoon: Nap in front of the TV. When he mentions that all of your other siblings — and their noisy families — are in attendance, come back with, "Well, they're not as considerate as I am. Please remember this when revising your will."
Super Market Sweepings
If Home Improvement, Last Man Standing, and other Tim Allen shows have taught us anything, it's that dads love meat and beer. Luckily, both of these things can be found in abundance at your local supermarket.
Now, the brown-nosing "better" children who planned ahead will have already bought out all the good steaks, so pickings might be slim. Is a package of stew beef better than a filet mignon? Certainly not. But beef is beef and fathers cannot be choosers. Further, in lieu of a thoughtful gift, we're willing to bet that many dads will gladly accept a lot of "thoughtless" beer over a little, "thoughtful" necktie.
Prove It, Old Man!
Boldly show up with nothing and tell him that you're not going to celebrate this holiday unless he can prove that you're actually his child. This is only funny if your father is Maury Povich, or similar sensationalist daytime TV show host. If your dad is anyone else, get ready to run from a very angry and offended man who can still deliver a whoopin'. However, if you can outrun him, you've saved money on a gift. Score!
Opt for any of the above and the worst case scenario is that Dad pulls the "I'm disappointed in you, son" card. Which they say makes you feel worse than being yelled at, but, let's be honest, being yelled at is actually the worst. (Though we'd never know, as we've never disappointed our Dads — especially not that time we got a speeding ticket and dad sighed, then said, "Well, it's what I've come to expect from you." Harsh!)
How about we all head off this drama next year by putting a reminder in Google Calendar to buy a gift ahead of time. Go. Do it right now. Dad's probably worth it.
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