As part of our Valentine's Day coverage, we've asked fellow mom (and dad) bloggers and writers to share their thoughts on parenthood and the lil loves of their lives — their children — with us.
You may remember the witty Peter Hartlaub, founder of The Poop and San Francisco Chronicle Pop Culture Critic from last year. This year he returns to offer up more thoughts fatherhood. He's the proud papa of Theo, 3 ½, and ten-month-old Milo.
lilsugar: Why didn’t anybody tell me (fill in the blank) about fatherrhood?
Peter Hartlaub: I'd have to remember the name of every “Bob the Builder” character? And just when I think I’ve seen every talking cement mixer, bulldozer and backhoe, some creepy scarecrow thing shows up. (At least my sons aren’t into Thomas the Tank Engine. That habit can cost a parent a few grand per year.)
lilsugar: You know you’re a father when (fill in the blank)?
Peter Hartlaub: You’re making up completely random games just to keep your kids from driving their mom crazy. Our favorite one right now is called “mechanical bull.” I lie on my back, my older son crawls on my knees, and he tries to hold on longer than John Travolta did in “Urban Cowboy.” This is good for about eight minutes of distraction, and untold future chiropractor bills.
To see the rest of Peter's answers,
lilsugar: The best trick my parents taught me was (fill in the blank)?
Peter Hartlaub: To be good with my money. I think I’ve been paying into Social Security since I was 15, and had one or two jobs throughout high school and college. I had to pay my own way from a young age (I was a San Francisco Chronicle paperboy!) and was always able to stretch my money pretty far. I’m hoping these skills serve me well in the next few years, when the entire nation has to start living like the Evans family in “Good Times.”
lilsugar: Helicopter dad or free range kids?
Peter Hartlaub: I’m that guy at the park who is one step behind my kid, following him wherever he goes. I keep telling myself that it’s just because I like to play with him …