Brad Paisley wrote a song a few years ago “Letter to Me” where he as an adult wrote a letter to his 16 year-old-self explaining how life is going to change and become infinitely better as he grows up. Luckily for that 16 year old he grew into a multi-millionaire country music superstar, not everyone is going to be so lucky. I thought in the same vein why not write a letter to my future son and drop a few pearls of wisdom that I as a 34 have acquired walking this earth. This is of course in the event I am actually psychic and that dream I have been having about being crushed in a freak snow cone accident does happen and I am no longer around to share these thoughts in person. So in no particular order here are some things to keep in mind as you grow up.
Treat every woman/girl you meet the same way you want someone to treat your own mother or sister. I can not stress this enough! Be respectful, caring and polite. Not every woman/girl loves the bad boy and nice guys don’t always finish last. I can only imagine the kinds of laser guns dads will have when you start dating so you really will want to follow this one closely.
That being said please remember to have some fun. You will go through so many types of relationships over the years that it will make your head hurt. My advice is to be a good man, but realize that who you date at the age of 16 will most likely not be attending your 10 year reunion with you, and that is OK! Play the field, and know that your life will not be over when your homecoming date breaks up with you the next day.
Swearing, I love to swear. Your father has the mouth of a sailor on shore leave. I am going to work on that before you get here. That is not to say that I will not be using a few colorful words around you as you grow up. Let me tell you this though, if I ever hear you swear in front of an adult I will take you behind the proverbial wood shed for a man-to-man talk. Two things in this world send my blood pressure sky rocketing; people who smoke around kids and kids that think they are tough and cool swearing.
Try and be accepting of everyone you come across. I am not saying you have to like everybody and agree with everyone, which is never going to happen. I simply ask you to keep an open mind. Life is too short to be filled with hate and anger. Sometimes I think life would be so much simpler if we all had green skin. Inevitably though the emerald green people would get pissed off when someone with hunter green skin tried marrying a person with neon green skin and all hell would break lose. Realize that there can be many answers to the same question, and no one has it just right. Don’t be afraid to listen and ask questions.
Stand up for yourself and for those around you. There has always been bullying in this world. Some caveman probably got mad at how small his rock was, so he went and knocked another caveman’s rock over just to be jerk. Bullies are always going to exist but if you stand up to them you take away their power. I am not saying you need to fight every kid that calls you a name. Take the appropriate action when the time is right. That may be as simple as coming and talking to us about it. DO NOT ever stand by and watch bullying happen either. If you have a friend being picked on do something about it. If you have a friend who is a bully you better straighten his ass out. (There I go with that colorful language again). Middle school, JR high and high school are hard enough without some dick constantly pointing out and ridiculing other people’s faults.
Let’s see what else…oh tattoos (if your Grandma LaLonde asks we never had this conversation). They are painful but look really cool. Just know a few things right off the bat; never get a girls name, a sports figure, a band or a cartoon put on your body. Get something that has meaning to you and that will still have that meaning in 10, 25 even 50 years later. Also pick one out and wait a week or two. If you are still into then go ahead.
Last but not least know that we are not always going to see eye to eye. I certainly didn’t with Grandpa’s LaLonde and Shields. Just know that everything I do I do it because I love you and want you to be happy. We are going to argue, we are going to fight, you are probably going to hate me at certain points of your life and that is alright. I don’t need you to always like me. I just need you to know that nothing in this world matters to me as much as you do. This got a little more sappy and less funny than I originally intended so BABA BOOEY!