One lesson I’ve learned about fatherhood

When in doubt, go with the genie ...
When in doubt, go with the genie …

So earlier this week we took a quickie family vacation to Catalina Island, a delightful little land mass situated off the coach of Southern California. We drove up to Newport, grabbed a ferry and made the 90-minute ride. It was beautiful and lovely and relaxing.

On Thursday, with nothing else on the agenda, I made plans with my daughter Casey to visit the Catalina Casino, the classic movie theater, and catch the 6:30 pm showing of Aladdin. Then, about two hours after buying tickets, I realized the film would be competing with Game 6 of the NBA Finals. Which I really wanted to watch.

For a moment—the quickest of moments—there was internal debate. Maybe the wife would fill in on the cinematic front. Maybe Casey could just go with her aunt. Maybe …


No, no, no.

I watched Aladdin. I missed the game.

I am better for it.

I’m not saying I’m the world’s greatest father, but one thing I have learned in my 15 years of having kids (Casey is 15, Emmett is 12) is that the time absolutely soars past, and no matter how big the football game or basketball game or baseball game or … whatever may be, it’s rarely (never?) worth skipping out on your kids to watch a sporting event. It’s just not, and on the rare occasions I’ve done so I always wind up regretting it.

Trust me—I speak from experience here. Your kid is an infant; is 1; is 3; is 6. You think you have a ton of time to be with him/her.

You don’t.

Absorb it all.

Be a father.