Dad, Don’t Read This

Posted by admin on June 8th, 2010 filed in bicycles, food, general, travel

So, it’s less than a week til RAAM starts. Dad’s been living in So Cal for the past few weeks, training for the big race and though we – the family members – don’t hear from him too often we figure that just means he’s out playing in the road. A picture taken by a friend confirmed this:

Original caption: "Excellent, if brief, support from Team Jelly Belly."

(Photo by Terry Hutt)

And here’s the full team in their recently-arrived team jerseys:

Bent Up Cycles: The 4-Man Team!

Photo by IDKW

It’s strange to watch him prep for this from afar. I wish there was more I could do to help, but there isn’t. So, instead – since it is also almost Father’s Day – I’ve been spending my time searching for a Father’s Day Gift to give him when we see him at the finish line in Maryland. The problem is narrowing down the selection and that’s where I’m hoping that you, the readers, can help me.

Dad’s a diverse guy. He’s a computer nerd, a cycling geek, a mechanic & handyman, an avid reader, an avid eater, a music lover, a scifi fan and myriad other things, so I’ve tried to find gifts that appeal to these qualities. The categories are as follows:

COMPUTERS/COMPUTING

Binary “Dad” Shirt

Binary Dad Shirt from ThinkGeek.com

Though this is probably the most appropriate of all the gifts for Dad’s Day, it may also be the most (obscurely) clichéd.

xkcd Sudo Shirt

xkcd sudo shirt from ThinkGeek.com

Not particularly relevant to the holiday at hand, but I think it would still make him chuckle. Next category.

CYCLING ACCESSORIES

Universal Gadget Wrist Charger

Universal Wrist Charger from ThinkGeek.com

With as much as he is on the road, this might be an interesting accessory. He’s finally jumped on the cell phone bandwagon, but I don’t know if he uses it enough to warrant an on-the-go charger … but maybe we could rig it up to a charger for this:

Helmet Cam

Tachyon XC Micro Helmet Cam

For all the times he gets run off the road, or nearly run off the road by passing cars, documentation could come in handy.  Plus, we’d get to see what it looks like to pedal a bike really really really fast without having to actually do so.  While brings me to the couch category:

MULTIMEDIA

Star Trek Next Gen Movie Pack

Star Trek: The Next Generation Movie Pack

Granted, it’s a low-risk move, but you can’t go wrong with Jean-Luc. “On screen.” They have the set in Blu-Ray, but seeing as my parents don’t own a Blu-Ray player and still have beloved VHS tapes that get regular use I think DVDs are the good, middle-of-the-road solution where entertainment technology is concerned. On the slightly more advanced side, there’s this:

Barnes & Nobles Nook eBook Reader

Barnes & Noble Nook Dad reads through books like fire consumes paper, so something like this would save him the trouble of carrying all those Bible-sized Neil Stephenson books on the bicycle. But since the Nook looks a little pricey, I checked gifts on the other end of the spectrum, too – the free end.

Hits from the 80s

Best of the 1880s, Vol. 1

And who wouldn’t love adding another 80s mix CD to their collection?  Right.

FOOD

Exotic Jerky

Buffalo, Venison, Ostrich & Alligator Jerky, mmmmmm.

So this looked like a nice gift a father might enjoy … Then I came across this:

Bacon Moon Pie

Melted Bacon Moonpie

Can anything compare? Marshmallow, caramel, chocolate and BACON. Wow. Four BMPs ship in the US for $33, or nine for $116. Plus, the recipe comes in the box. Now that’s what I’m talking about. Teach a man to fish and he’ll feed on bacon moon pies for a lifetime. A shortened lifetime, but a lifetime nonetheless. But, what’s a life without a little spice?

Jug o’ Tabasco

Tabasco Gallon Jug

If the bacon and chocolate aren’t enough to cause some celebratory Father’s Day heartburn, there’s always a Jug of Tabasco to aid the process. Imagine how many eggs this would top! How many nasal passages this could clear! They even offer personalized gallons. Can’t help but think that this would make a wonderful gift for someone… But, I have to admit, Dad might be better off with a gallon of this:

Cane Sweeeet Iced Tea

Popeye's Sweet Tea

“Dad, I slaved all day over a hot stove buying this free iced tea. Don’t drink it all in one place. Oh, yeah, Happy Father’s Day.” Perhaps it’s a little half-hearted.  But staring at this gives me a craving for sweet tea. I wonder if they will only hand this out to fathers… “No really, my dad is right around the corner. He sent me here to pick one up. Um, and so did my other dad. Yes, I have two. And they both want a Father’s Day gallon of tea. No they can’t share. Because it’s what they got each other for Father’s Day. It’s in lieu of a card. Yeah, neither of them are crazy about cards. I got them ties.”

Ideally I’d get him a lifetime supply of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (then regularly sneak a few), but in place of that I might try this:

Giant Peanut Butter Cup

Giant Peanut Butter Cup vs. Regular Peanut Butter Cup

Wouldn’t last a lifetime, but I could probably make him one on a quarterly basis for a few years. Supposedly, Reese’s already makes the World’s Largest Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup, but it’s nothing Guinness would be interested in.

And the final category:

MISCELLANEOUS

Bendable Mr. Bill Figure

Ah, yes. It's Mr. Bill.

Actually, this should probably go under the Cycling Accessories category. I originally thought it would make for a good family joke – our first cat was named Mr. Bill (and my brother played Mr. Hand) – but on second thought, while riding across America it might be nice to have a companion who knows a thing or two about physical pain. The “Ohh nooooo!” would be appropriate on those long, steep downhill stretches too…

And that ends the list. Direct all comments and votes to me at ks.polk@gmail.com and if you know my dad and have a better suggestion, I welcome it!

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