Why I Didn’t Put Together My Daughter’s Swing Set

I’m a man.  A manly man.  But that doesn’t mean I have to do everything on my own.  As a single dad, sometimes we forget these things.  We spend all day, every day, taking care of business on our own.  We run a home, maybe a business, have a job, maybe a few promotions under our belt, have kids in school, help with homework.  We file our own taxes, buy our own groceries, even clean our own homes.  It’s all very virtuous, but sometimes we have to admit that we can’t do it all alone.

Can’t Do It All Alone, Kiddo

Life is complicated, but sometimes we make it more complex by being stubborn and foolhardy.  This was the case when I bought my daughter her first swing set.  I wanted to save some money, so I opted to not take the option of having an installer come with the delivery.  I thought it would be easy enough to put together a few pieces of playground equipment, especially considering it came with instructions and pictures and everything like that.

It’s not like I’m constructing the damn thing, right?  I’m not measuring and cutting wood, nailing and screwing two-by-fours together, sanding and painting, right?  It’s just a simple, out of the box, assembly project, right?

It’s not like I’m constructing the damn thing, right? – Guy who’s wrong.

Turns out, not quite.  This damn thing got delivered as a huge set of boxes, and they were heavy as hell.  I got everything unpacked and it was a little overwhelming.  Nothing but pieces upon pieces upon pieces.  What the hell was I supposed to do with all this?

The diagrams weren’t as helpful as they, maybe, could have been.  So many pieces of wood.  Plastic.  Screws.  Bolts.  Swings. My head started to swim.  On top of all of that, I had things to do.  I had to pick up my daughter from school, and I wanted to be done before she got home, so that she would be pleasantly surprised.  Uggh.

The Ideal Swing Set

It was supposed to look so pretty!!

A Call for Help, Not as Bad as It Seems

So I couldn’t get it done that day.  I hid all the boxes in the basement and went to pick up Karla from school.  That night I went to ask for help.  First step was Google.  I was inquiring to my search engine overlord whether there were any handymen in new jersey that would install a swingset, like, tomorrow.  Apparently there are many different companies that would help.  It hurt me, a little, as a man, to have to call another man for help to put my daughters playset together, but ultimately I came to terms with this modern emasculation.

Turns out, it’s not a manly thing to be so busy you can’t pick up your kids from school.  Or so angry at a Toys R’ Us product that you are screaming at the instruction to “make sense, damnit!”.  It is manly to approach a problem, attack it, and get it fixed, whether it be manual or with the help of professionals.

So go ahead, outsource your problems.  It’s just money, and if it means saving your time to spend with your kids or to get more things done, than that is OK.

Say it with me: It is OK!




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Sex and the Single Dad

Single dad’s face a unique position in the world.  Very similar to single moms, but unfortunately not without the much deserved respect often given to single moms.  We are parents, but still bachelors in our own right.  Often we have daughters of our own, making the debauchery of bachelor life taken on a new form, a more adult, respectable form.

Our young sons are also very impressionable, so we have to face our decisions and lifestyles with more than just selfish enthusiasm, but a more holistic, long term approach, knowing our actions will affect the actions of our children for years to come.

So I’ve started this site to be able to document the unique challenges facing the lot of single dads out there, hopefully reach a few new ones and perhaps change a few old ones.  I believe that, with divorce rates steadily rising, and standard family units quickly becoming the minority, it is important to stay on the cutting edge of cultural developments.

What should we do and not do, as single dads, professionals, parents and bachelors?  It’s not always a clear cut answer to these questions, and hopefully this blog will be able to answer some of those questions over the next few months.

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