Some things you don't know about till you experience them. Raising boys is one.
We have two sons and one and a half grandsons - 14 months old and still in utero, due in December.
Now's the time.
There're things I wish I'd known so I could've passed them on to our sons when they were younger, so I'm gonna get started on the grandsons now.
These are things only your grandma will tell you...okay...probably only if your grandma is me...some little known gems, and some tried and true oldies but goodies.
Rules to live by:
1. Never wear bangs. Ever. Under any circumstances.
I'm not sure how this happens.
Is it a hairstyle that won't stay where it's supposed to?
Are the bangs unintentional? Blown down by the wind, lack of styling products, short forehead?
Who knows? Who cares?
Any haircut that might result in a bang situation should be off limits.
2. Capris pants aren't for you. No, not even in Europe. No, not if you're gay. If you have a penis, capris have no place in your wardrobe.
Gingham is off limits too. I know, 007 wore it. With his toupee.
Think about it.
3. Even soccer moms have tattoos. Sorry, the "I'm cool cause I have tattoos" ship has sailed, especially for you.
You'll have to think of something else.
And no, not lip rings or those platter sized earrings. By the time you're old enough to have those, grandpa will have them.
Maybe you can vote Republican, join the Tea Party. That'll show us.
4. Learn to cook. Odds are your wife won't. If you have a life partner instead of a wife...he probably won't either.
5. Money still talks. There's been quite a shift since the 2007 recession. We've returned to a simpler way of life. Less focus on things, more on the spiritual.
It's all a fake out.
Nothing is more attractive than a financially secure man. It's just not politically correct to say so.
I'm not talking Bill Gates wealth necessarily, although that kind of uber money isn't a dating detriment, I can assure you. I'm talking about a guy who knows how to save a buck, invest wisely, work hard.
The number of zeros differ, but the principal is the same. A safety net is a turn on.
Poverty is only romantic in novels and politics. In real life, it sucks.
6. Don't be cheap. This seems to fly in the face of #5. It doesn't.
Investing wisely means finding balance. Don't stop living for today because you're too worried about tomorrow. You can do both.
There's more than one way to invest. You gotta invest in your personal life just like it was a mutual fund.
It's all a matter of degree.
Work hard, but take vacations.
Save some, spend some.
Chicks like gifts. They just do. So, you'll have to buy them.
Wining and dining? You betcha.
And, never, ever make a girl you're dating pay her share. This is another of your Mimi's politically incorrect views.
A lot of women will say that a man carrying the dating financial burden alone died with Lucy Ricardo. Well, watch and learn. See who gets more dates. The guy who splits the check or the guy who, without fuss or fanfare, pays.
I still love Lucy.
7. Never underestimate Flower Power. Buy them. Pick them. Hell, even grow them. Give them.
I've never known a girl who didn't love flowers, or the thought of flowers.
Even just one flower does the trick.
If you give them for no reason...you're in.
8. It's all about the apology. Shit happens, and odds are, it's your fault.
Most of the stupid shit you're gonna do you won't be able to take back.
The apology afterward is all you've got. It better be good.
See #6 and #7.
9. Courtesy is not out of style. Opening doors, pulling out chairs, giving up your seat for the elderly, giving a hostess gift, and writing thank you notes are the signs of a gentleman.
Have some class.
10. Starter dates are better than starter wives. Don't marry the first girl you sleep with. Don't marry the first ten girls you sleep with (if you should be so lucky).
Make your mistakes before they're permanent.
Before you have kids you can screw up.
35 for a man is like 20 for a woman. Live it up.
And for God's sake, don't marry a woman because you think she's gonna be a great mother. She's not gonna be your mother. She's gonna be your wife. A fully formed woman who should know how to act like one.
And no woman worth her salt is easy to get along with a lot of the time.
I just threw that last one in for free.
11. Respect your parents. This has fallen woefully through the cracks.
They brought you in and brought you up the best way they knew how.
You owe them. Not vice versa.
You treat your mother like crap, your life will not be a happy one. I promise you, my friend.
You think you can take on your old man? Try it and good luck to you.
So, remember their birthdays, Mother's and Father's day, and holidays. Just buy a card for Christ's sake. They really mean it when they say they don't need presents.
They just need you to NOT act like an entitled, obnoxious, rude little asshole.
12. Man up. I saved the best, most important one for last.
Get your balls out of your mama's purse and act like a man.
Get a job.
Take care of yourself.
Take care of your family.
Be a good friend.
Be a responsible, contributing member of society.
And if I ever see you crying during any sporting event...we're gonna have words.
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