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Jewish Journal

Dad Behavior

by Elliot Steingart

March 25, 2013 | 1:39 pm

My dad caught a fish.

With each passing day my hair gets grayer and my jokes, cornier. I accept this transformation as an inevitable fact of life. I'm slowly turning into my father. Spending time with my dad is a study in who I will become.

I waited for my dad to come out of the bathroom at a local coffee shop. He was in there so long my coffee turned decafeinnated. All I could hear was the steady hum of the hand dryer.

“What took you so long?” I asked

“I had to dry my hands,” he said.

Most people can poop in less than time than it takes my dad to dry his hands. Forget if a line is formed to use the one stall bathroom. They will wait for my dad to blow dry his hands. Then they will wait for my dad to figure out where to return the bathroom key.

We sat on bench outside the coffee shop smiling at a Boston Terrier. My dad stood up and extended his espresso underneath the Boston Terrier's nose.

“Want some coffee?” he asked.

The dog's owner looked up at my dad. His eyes modeled his dog's, big and brown, nearly forming an underbite of his own. “Dogs don't need caffeine,” he barked at my dad.

Back home my mom and I sat watching “We Bought a Zoo.” During the film's emotional climax when Matt Damon's son pleads for his father's love, my dad interrupts the scene to share that “The peppermill was invented in 1842” along with other tidbits from a forwarded email.

“We are trying to watch the movie,” I told him politely.

When Matt Damon finally saved the zoo I learned that my dad earned 19 points in Words with Friends.

My parents friends Suzie and Steve came over for a drink before dinner. My dad prepared his signature dirty martinis with a splash of lime juice and poured Steve a shot of Patron Silver. Earlier in the day I gave the bottle to my dad.

“Is Patron Silver any good?” I asked.

“It's shit,” he said. “Anejo is the good one.”

“You're welcome,” I said.

Steve enjoyed the Patron, at least. We finished our drinks, and put on our coats to walk outside. “I'm going to pull out,” shared my dad. “I should have done that 30 years ago,” he added.

At the African restaurant my dad ordered the appetizers. All at the table expressed interest in the Samosas.

“How big are the somosas?” I asked.

The waiter signaled with his hands the same signal that is used to describe someone with a small penis. “Only this big,” he said.

“Ok, let's order two for the table,” my dad told the waiter.

In this scenario the five of us would each get one corner of a three inch somosa. Even the waiter laughed. We finished all ten somosas that we ordered.

At breakfast I asked my dad about which of his new friends he likes the best. He likes Steve because he likes to drink and he likes Richard because he likes opera and computers. I wonder what Steve and Richard say about my dad.

"I like Marc because he feeds Boston Terriers espresso."

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Elliot Steingart is a Los Angeles based comedian and writer who hosts a monthly comedy show, “Melgard Mondays” at Melgard Public House. Steingart has written jokes for...

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