1. Dads have a built-in reason to spend extra time looking at the newest Star Wars action figures in the toy aisle at Target. If you have a son, it’s even easier to validate your fascination with model airplanes, tanks, spaceships and Hot Wheels.
2. Dads get to teach their kids about shaving, throwing a curveball, spitting and, of course, using the great outdoors as your personal restroom (only for the boy . . . only for the boy). Moms get to teach about the messy stuff. Dad wins.
3. Dads get to be judge and jury over all kid arguments. Dictatorship has its benefits.
4. When Dads get sick, everyone takes care of them and nurses them back to good health. When Mom gets sick . . . oh wait, Mom isn’t allowed to get sick.
5. Dad can play 18 holes of golf on a Saturday morning and it’s considered a much-deserved break from the 40-hour Monday-through-Friday grind. Little does anyone know that at least 15 of those hours are spent at lunches or updating their LinkedIn profile.
6. Dad is allowed to wear his glove and jersey to the ballpark without anyone pointing or laughing if he’s with his kid(s). Without the kids, please both point and laugh. Non-parents are never permitted to wear a jersey or carry any sports equipment to a professional or collegiate sporting event after you celebrate your 13th birthday.
7. Dad can actually master Call of Duty without anyone calling him a geek. Sure, they called him a geek throughout junior high and high school. Sure, the Star Trek uniform didn’t help that image. But now he’s cool. Really, he is.
8. Dad gets to control the most important, most powerful weapon in the land – the TV remote.
9. Dad can dictate hair length like a drill sergeant at Parris Island.
10. Dad gets to interrogate his daughter’s new boyfriends by using water-boarding . . . and nobody prosecutes.
11. Dad is allowed to cry in the following instances: a) son scores winning run sending obnoxious opposing coach to his ridiculously bright yellow H2 Hummer and away from the ballpark; b) daughter gets married; c) Brian’s Song; d) Field of Dreams.
12. Dad gets to chest-bump with his son but also teach him that rubbing it in after scoring a touchdown is unsportsmanlike. Yeah, it’s a double standard. Get over it.
13. When Dad starts to gray, it’s called aging gracefully, like Bill Clinton. When Mom starts to gray, it’s a sign of the Apocalypse (and a sizable hit to the credit card after a trip to the extraordinarily overpriced hair salon with the French name that I can’t pronounce).
14. Dad can spend less than $20 on a haircut while watching sports on TV.
15. Dad can make it mandatory for his kids to cheer for his Miami Dolphins even though everyone else wears Tony Romo and Jason Witten jerseys.
16. Dad gets to carry his kids upstairs when they fall asleep on the couch.
17. Dad does change diapers so that he can appear genuinely helpful and sympathetic of what his wife just went through with childbirth … but we don’t actually have to go through childbirth. Awesome.
18. Dad gets to let his kids win just enough times so they’ll stay positive and not turn to a life of crime (or law school). But he also gets to remind them who’s the boss by dominating them in H.O.R.S.E.
19. Someday you’ll get to watch your son play middle linebacker.
20. Someday you’ll get to walk your daughter down the aisle. OK, scratch that one off the list.