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The Father of All Dad Guides: From (A)doring to (Z)addy

The Father of All Dad Guides: From (A)doring to (Z)addy


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A humorous gift book for dads that introduces the different "species" of American fathers, from A to Z

Of all the mammalian species of North America, few are as paradoxically mysterious and demanding of attention as the human father of the United States. Quiet yet steady in his affection and deafeningly loud when he’s mad, the American dad—as much as we love him—is a particularly exciting study, which is why we’ve created this guide as an aid for readers to identify themselves (if you happen to be a dad), their dads (if you happen to have a dad), dads on television (often a stand-in when your dad’s not around), and dads in the wild.

In The Father of All Dad Guides: From A(doring) to Z(addy), you will learn how to identify fathers through:

· Their markings. Some dads have mustaches. Others do not!
· Dad calls. These include: “I’ll turn this car around right now” and “Can’t you ask your mom about that?”
· Migration patterns. Why does Dad consistently ignore directions when he clearly doesn’t know where he is going?
· Hibernation. Dads are tired all the time.
· Defining characteristics. All dads are different, but they typically fall into at least one of the categories we’ve collected here. Is your dad obsessed with barbecuing? He might be a grill dad. Did he only really begin to see women as people deserving of political and social equality after he had daughters? That right there is the feminist dad!

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250192066
Publisher: St. Martin's Publishing Group
Publication date: 06/04/2019
Pages: 128
Product dimensions: 8.21(w) x 8.34(h) x 0.66(d)

About the Author

Madeleine Davies is a Wisconsin-born writer living in New York and the author of The Father of All Dad Guides. Having spent her twenties writing and editing for Jezebel and Gawker Media, she's now a stay-at-home mom (to two idiot cats) and a freelancer. Her dad and step dad somehow support this lifestyle.

Tara Jacoby is Philly-based illustrator from Vineland, New Jersey and the illustrator of The Father of All Dad Guides. Tara served as Deputy Art Director for Gawker Media before becoming a freelance illustrator. Her work has been published in GQ, The Village Voice, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Playboy and more. She has a quality dad named Bruce.

Read an Excerpt



The Adoring Dad knows that his child — no matter how much trouble they get in — can do no wrong. (If — and it's very likely — the Adoring Dad's offspring are the worst-behaved kids on the block, you certainly won't hear that from him.) You can identify him by his car (decorated with a "My Child Is on the Honor Roll" bumper sticker) and his living space, which will always include an immaculately preserved version of his child's bedroom that will remain an untouched shrine with trophies and plaques celebrating past accomplishments that even his kid (now an adult) doesn't really care about anymore. But what does that matter! His child won a forensics/football/academic bowl/dance award in 2003 and he won't let any of you forget it.

Keep in mind that pursuing and coupling with the Adoring Dad's child is not recommended because — in the Adoring Dad's eyes, at least — you will never be good enough for their child. If you court them regardless, be prepared for a life of receiving sidelong glances and curt responses from the Adoring Dad. If your relationship ends in divorce, well ... watch your back.



A. Yes, and I am very happy in it.

B. Yes, and I do not feel professionally satisfied.

C. No, but I am looking for one.

D. No. I'm fine being unemployed.


A. Come to their door and knock?

B. Text or honk your horn and wait outside?

C. Meet them at the location of the date — it's easier that way?

D. Not take them on a date at all unless they're paying?


A. However many we can responsibly financially support.

B. 1–2.

C. I do not want to have children.

D. Doesn't matter because I am not supporting them.


A. Yes! We're a perfect team.

B. We're always going to have our differences and that's okay!

C. They're too good for me.

D. I'm too good for them.

Mostly As: No Mostly Bs: No Mostly Cs: No Mostly Ds: No



You don't like bitter or hoppy ales? Well, that's only because you haven't tried the Brewmaster Dad's bitter or hoppy ales! Same goes for stouts, lagers, ambers, IPAs, or any other beer the Brewmaster Dad has produced or is producing in the garage or basement where he's built his makeshift (albeit quite impressive) brewery.

When the Brewmaster Dad lets you try his beer, you must nod and say, "Mmm," no matter what you actually think of the taste. When he tells you the history of IPAs, you'll tell him that you're interested even if you're not. Why? Because the Brewmaster Dad's lectures also come with the promise of, at the very least, a light buzz. He's laid back and affable about everything — duh, the kind of guy you can kick back and have a beer with! — EXCEPT his craft brews. Beer is not a laughing matter.

Unless of course you're talking about light lagers (he hopes you're not), in which case — he'll tell you with a smirk — they're ALL jokes and are not allowed in his home.




Sure, the Coach Dad might be hard on you, but that's because he sees your full potential and knows you've yet to realize it. Through hard work and tough love, he will teach you what it means to have grit and — more importantly — help you grow into a capable adult who possesses ample integrity and a good work ethic. (Either that or he'll just scream at you at your Little League games. But back to the nice Coach Dad!)

The Coach Dad is typically identified by his khaki shorts, tucked-in, brightly colored polo shirt, team hat, and the whistle around his neck. He is usually found in high school gyms, locker rooms, and football fields around the country. Because he must go where the job goes, his migration patterns are untrackable.

Caution: An encounter with a Coach Dad, especially one held during practice in the pouring rain, can end with a pep talk or an inspirational Friday Night Lights-esque speech. Steer clear if you're not ready to believe in yourself.

Clear eyes, full hearts, can't lose.


An Inspiring Halftime Speech


[A type of animal, plural]

It's been an ___________ season. We have __________________ and we have [adjective] [verb, past tense]

__________________ and we have __________________. Every single one of you [verb, past tense] [verb, past tense]

has __________________ to get here. And are we going to let our rivals, [verb, past tense]

the ______s take this ______ away from us? After ________________? [noun] [noun] [noun, an event]

I don't think so.

We are down ________ points. Our chances are ___________. But [number] [adjective]

I know that if we go out there and give it our all, we will come

out ahead. Think of your ______ in the stands. Think of the [noun]

______ you want to ask to prom. Think of how good you'll [noun]

feel when you ___ and take away the ______ cup. [verb] [noun]

Most importantly, think of your fellow ______ s – they are your [noun]

Teammates and we will do this for each other.

Now when we ______ back out there, we will reenter [verb] the _______ as champions, our ___________s held high. This is [place] [body part]

teamwork and with it no one, not even ______ can stop us. [noun] On ________, go ________ s! [number] [animal]



The Dog Dad is one of few dads in this book that doesn't require human children to claim fatherhood. Why? Because his pride and joy are not his offspring, but his canine children, i.e., his "fur babies." Safe havens for his most vulnerable emotions, dogs provide their Dog Dad with everything that real kids do not: unconditional love, nonjudgmental companionship, and an inability to be disappointed in the Dog Dad's failures.

Whereas many (though not all Dog Dads) might be too confined by cultural norms to coo and preen over a child, they will likely have no problem fussing over their pups, maybe even grooming them and enrolling them in pageants (a.k.a. dog shows.) But not every Dog Dad is that fancy: Lots of them adopt pooches from shelters and spend their time at dog parks, lovingly combing ticks out of their dogs' fur and giving them heartworm medication. Whether they'd do this for a person depends on the man, but regardless, DOG will always be the Dog Dad's copilot.

Match the DOG to the DAD



No matter what this father intends, the Embarrassing Dad can never not embarrass their children. A limit to the ways they can do this has yet to be reached by science, sociologists, or mortified kids, but the most recognizable methods we've observed are:

• Telling bad jokes.

• Bad wedding dancing.

• Not tipping at restaurants.

• Loudly asking your friends or romantic partner humiliating questions with regard to their relationship to you.

• Loudly expressing outdated and often politically incorrect politics.

• Taking holidays too seriously.

• Never knocking before entering your bedroom.

If you recognize this variation of dad in your own parent, the best-case scenario is that his embarrassing nature becomes charming with time. If you recognize this variation of dad because you're an Embarrassing Dad yourself, we're glad you're having fun!



(1750 B.C., Canaan)

In Genesis, Jacob is such an annoying dad to 11 of his 12 sons that they sold Joseph, his favorite, to a group of roaming Ishmaelites, all so they could get their pops to stop doting on Joseph and give them some attention, too. A good lesson in not playing favorites!

KING TUT (Egypt, 1332 B.C.)

Neither of the pharaoh Tutankhamun's children survived birth, but what qualifies him as an embarrassing dad is that his wife and would-be mother of his children, Ankhesenamun, was also his half-sister AND cousin. And your family feels complicated ...

GENGHIS KAHN (1152 A.D., Mongolia) Genghis was a rolling stone, to say the least. Legend has it that he had so many children that one out of 200 people living today are in his bloodline. Sadly, he was also a deadbeat who never knew the vast majority of his kids.

POPE ALEXANDER VI (1474 A.D., Italy)

Pope Alexander VI — also known as Rodrigo Borgia — was the Pope, yes, but he also (against all the rules) fathered at least four children out of wedlock. Explain that to your teacher on career day!

HENRY VIII (1516 A.D., England)

You think your dad is embarrassing, but imagine if he annulled his marriage to your mom and put her in exile so that he could marry a 25-year-old who he then had beheaded on charges of treason, adultery, and incest. (And she was only the first!) YIKES!!

LEOPOLD MOZART (1756 A.D., Austria)

Father to Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, arguably one of the most accomplished and talented composers of all time, ol' Leopold gave up his own music career to focus on his prodigal son, therefore becoming one of history's most prolific stage dads.

JOSEPH SMITH (1832, United States)

Founding the Church of Latter Day Saints aside, Smith's family life was complicated with his wife — Emma Hale — refusing to recognize her husband's rampant polygamy up until her death. Dinner with your dad's new wife is rough enough, but imagine if he was ALSO still married to your mom.

MICHAEL LOHAN (1986, United States)

Father to actor Lindsay Lohan, Michael is a known-embarrassment — an unrelenting stage dad who pushed his children's careers to further his own fame. He's been arrested several times, but his worst crime is his infamously bad parenting, which allegedly included selling personal information about his family to the tabloids. Henry VIII is not sounding so bad, huh?



Congrats to the Feminist Dad, who embraces that women are people and deserving of respect and equality by teaching his children — regardless of their gender — that the sociopolitical struggles of women should be the sociopolitical struggles of everyone.

Sure, there's a chance he only realized all this after having a daughter, something you'll be able to notice because he'll not-so-subtly drop hints like "As a father of a daughter, I ..." when discussing women's issues — but at least he's getting there.

Of course, there are the special few Feminist Dads who have long been feminists, even if they only have sons! To these dads: Good job! We appreciate you even if we gently mock you for still rocking that "I'm with Her" shirt.


[] Gender-neutral color scheme (try yellow!) for clothes and room decor.

[] Actually, strike that. Girls can wear blue and boys can wear pink because gender is a social construct!

[] Actually, strike that. Girls can wear pink because there's nothing demeaning about overt displays of femininity.

[] Also it's infantilizing to call her a "girl," even if she is a literal infant. Call her "Womyn-to-Be."

[] Then again, she might not grow up to identify as a woman, so don't put that label on her, either. Just call her by her name!

[] Speaking of names, may we recommend something gender-neutral, like Sydney, Alex, or Glorp?

[] Then again, why do names have genders to begin with? Call her what you want.

[] By which we mean "call her what she wants" because it's very important to instill agency in your daughter so she'll grow to understand the power of choice.

[] Instead of the usual bedside stories, mix things up with some light feminist theory, like that of Germaine Greer.

[] Reminder, though, that like a lot of second-wave feminists, she's a gender essentialist, so you should probably mix in some modern theory, as well.

[] Another reminder, though: Feminism, like a lot sociopolitical identities, is dominated by white cis voices. Just a little something to keep in mind.

[] One more small thing to keep in mind: The world is notoriously terrible to women and no matter what you do, your daughter will come to understand this through the lack of choices, stereotyping, and representation she encounters legally, institutionally, and socially. Probably even with in her own family because none of us — not even you! — can escape the patriarchy.

[] Have a panic attack.

[] Rent a cabin in the middle of nowhere. Go out in the middle of the night and scream your fears for your daughter at the moon until your voice is gone and you collapse on the ground.

[] Wake up in the woods. Notice the strange markings you've made on your own body with mud while blacked out.

[] Find out that these markings are not random, but primitive symbols of witchcraft. Copy them carefully on a scrap of notebook paper.

[] On the first full moon after your daughter is born, re-create the symbols around her. Burn the notebook page and bury the ashes with a chicken bone and an old copy of Ms. magazine in the backyard.




Did you touch the grill? We hope not because, as any Grill Dad will tell you, grilling is an art that only a Grill Dad can perfect. The Grill Dad is a seasonal father who hibernates for most the winter, only occasionally climbing out of his cave to tailgate before cold weather sporting events. He is most active in the summer, typically stirring when the weather is above 70 degrees. You can track the Grill Dad by following the scent of cooking meat, the smoke that wafts from his backyard (or on sidewalks in areas where backyards don't exist), or his loud proclamation that while gas grills are easier to use than charcoal grills, nothing beats that charcoal flavor.

While he doesn't really know how to cook anything that can't be put on the grill, the Grill Dad is certain that he is the best chef in the neighborhood, if not the world.

Bon appétit!




Typically inhabiting left-leaning towns and cities across the country (like Austin, Texas; Portland, Oregon; or Asheville, North Carolina), the Hippie Dad is an idealist, often devoted to causes such as environmentalism, socialism, and — very adamantly — the legalization of marijuana.

With increased age and a growing bank account, the Hippie Dad will often become what's known as a "yippie," a portmanteau of "yuppie" and "hippie." A yippie is a hippie who has softened on his far-left politics and settled comfortably into the upper middle class. Though he will still probably smoke a lot of weed, delve deep into the practice of yoga, and (in his worst form) write endless letters of complaint to local newspapers and businesses, he is a true member of the bourgeoisie, though he'll never admit it. He buys organic and drives a hybrid, after all.

Spot this exciting dad at your local farmers market today!




The Invisible Dad is unseen for a multitude of reasons. Maybe he disappeared for good when you discovered his secret family in Tulsa or maybe he still shows up occasionally via a postcard or, if he's truly dedicated to appearing dedicated, a visit to take you bowling every month or so.

Also known as the "every other weekend and holidays" dad, the Invisible father can be charming in small doses. You might even know him as the "fun" parent, but that's only because he comes along so rarely that, unlike your mother, he doesn't have to care about whether or not you adhere to "rules" or basic nutrition.

The Invisible Dad does not have one tried-and-true habitat, unless you count "not here" as a particular location. That said, he usually dens in a one-bedroom apartment (maybe with a foldout couch for you and your siblings) that he shares with a line of short-term girlfriends, all probably named Shelly or Debbie.




Jokester Dad resembles the Embarrassing Dad (sometimes they even overlap), but unlike the Embarrassing Dad, he's either actually funny or — at the very least — cute about not being funny. This is the dad whose way of showing love and affection is through gentle ribbing and teasing that sometimes, according to the mother of his kid(s), "goes too far." He is the favorite dad of all of his child's friends, which is great because he loves a house full of company, so long as they'll watch Monty Python with him.

To impress a Jokester Dad, come prepared with some old Mad magazines or a nonfictional history of Saturday Night Live. Want to impress him further? Watch a Richard Pryor documentary or wax poetic about the life and times of Gilda Radner. Or if that feels too daunting, sit back and enjoy what the Jokester Dad has to offer you. Entertaining is this dad's favorite activity.


[] Does your face hurt? BECAUSE IT'S KILLING ME!

[] Don't play tricks, THAT'S HOW HOUDINI DIED!

[] I'd rather have a bottle in front of me THAN A FRONTAL LOBOTOMY.

[] A three legged dog walks into a saloon and says, "I'M LOOKING FOR THE MAN WHO SHOT MY PAW."

[] A man walked into a bar and said, "OW."

[] Did you get a haircut? NO, I GOT THEM ALL CUT.

[] The rotation of Earth REALLY MAKES MY DAY!

[] Want to hear a joke about a piece of paper? NEVER MIND, IT'S TEARABLE!

[] To a server at a restaurant after he's cleared his plate: I HATED IT!

[] To a cashier who asks if he wants his milk in a bag: NO, I'LL KEEP IT IN THE CARTON!

[] To anyone willing: PULL MY FINGER.


Excerpted from "The Father of All Dad Guides"
by .
Copyright © 2019 Madeleine Davies and Tara Jacoby.
Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Title Page,
Copyright Notice,
ADORING DAD Are You Good Enough for My Child?,
BREWMASTER DAD A Beer Flight of Dads,
COACH DAD Dad Libs: An Inspiring Halftime Speech,
DOG DAD Match the Dog to the Dad,
EMBARRASSING DAD The Most Embarrassing Dads in History,
FEMINIST DAD A Feminist Checklist for New Dads of Daughters,
GRILL DAD Spot the Difference,
HIPPIE DAD Lit Yoga Poses for the Stoner Dad,
INVISIBLE DAD Create the Dad You Never Had,
JOKESTER DAD Dad Jokes (To Annoy Your Kids),
KILLJOY DAD Are You About to Lose an Eye?,
LEATHER DADDY Spot the Difference Unexpected Safe Words for Dads and Leather Daddies,
MIDLIFE CRISIS DAD Follow Dad on His Journey to Self-(re)discovery,
NERD DADA Galaxy of Nerd Dads,
OVERPROTECTIVE DAD Dad Libs: A First Date Interview,
PREPPER DAD What's in Dad's Bomb Shelter?,
QUALITY DAD Dad Hacks: They're Hacks for Dads!,
ROCK DAD Ways into a Rock Dad's Heart,
STEPDAD "You're Not My Dad, ...!",
UNAVAILABLE DAD How Will You Get Dad's Attention?,
VACATION DAD Will Dad Turn This Car Around? Dad-stinations Around the Country,
WARBUCKS DAD What Rags-to-Riches Orphan Are You?,
XENOPHOBIC DAD It's the Holidays! Can You Avoid a Fight with Dad?,
YUPPIE DAD Help Dad Get the Mower to the Shed,
ZADDY Who's Your Zaddy?,
About the Authors,
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