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Mini-Van : Parody

Something fun today. I started my career writing / producing / singing parody songs for Premiere Radio Networks a few decades ago. More recently I’ve been directing musicScreen Shot 2016-08-25 at 12.11.27 PM videos. Now the two worlds have started colliding and the result has been a blast!

This time around it’s a music video for the Texting Yoga Pants video for “Never Thought I’d Do It,” a parody of Montell Jordan’s “This Is How We Do It.” The parody focuses on the apprehensions every parent has about going from the sexiness of a sports car  or SUV to the practicality of a mini-van. Grant it, this video is from the mom perspective, but I’m sure every dad can relate as well.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=btI3v3c7y1w

Enjoy and share!

 
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Posted by on August 25, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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Be The Dad

Be The Dad

I received a few messages from several of you asking, “Where’d you go?”, “You haven’t posted in a while, you ok?,” and the simple answer is, all good. I’ve started no fewer than twenty new posts that for one reason or another I didn’t finish. I think that once I found myself repeating myself from posts a few years old I started to wonder what was next. What messages could I provide and what topics could I cover that I had yet to delve into?

To that end, for the past six months I’ve contemplated where I’m going with this blog. It’s been over five years since I started writing and the experience has been amazing. But I’ve always believed that everything must evolve. So where was I headed? What was next?

Then last week I found myself heading to Buffalo to say goodbye to my own father who had just turned 93 and had been suffering from dementia. The decease was in its final stages 12400442_10154457866442908_1873714818408639097_nand by the time I’d hit the road he had entered hospice and had stopped taking nutrients. During the 12 hour drive I thought a lot about my father and my experiences with him. I also considered my own life as a dad. And I thought about all of you. And I thought about stories I’d read about kids who didn’t have a father figure growing up for one reason or another.

The underlying thought I kept coming back to was the fact that my dad was there. Right or wrong, good or bad, brilliant or misguided, my dad was there. He wasn’t the kind of dad who came to track meets or came to see my band play. But he was there as a father. He was an influential part of my life and there was no question … he was the dad. He was a foundation and a rock for me to build my character and self image upon.

That, as it turned out, was the inspiration I was looking for. Along with encouraging readers to stay positive and to focus on the kids, I wanted to start encouraging men to “Be the Dad.” Be that rock. Be that foundation. Kids desperately need a father figure. They need that guidance. A single mom can fill a lot of roles, but I’m a firm believer that every boy needs a strong fatherly influence to help him build his character and self image. And every young lady should have the opportunity to grow up with a strong understanding male influence who will provide her with a reference of how she should be treated by men.

And so, in the coming weeks I hope to start a new video blog encouraging men to “Be the Dad.” Even if it’s not your own kid, be the dad to someone you know doesn’t have one. Be the positive, be the root. Growing up I had several father figures. Along with my father I had brothers-in-law who were like big brothers and each of them influenced me in different ways. I would not be the same person I am without their guidance and time.

I know your situation may make it harder than some, but know that every moment you spend on your son or daughter is pure gold. Every text of encouragement. Every call. Every visit. Every second you have with them is invaluable. Sometimes all it is is a mindset. Visualize yourself as “The Dad!” Remind yourself, “I’m the dad!” Because you are. And it’s a gift like none other.

I said goodbye to my dad last week. There will be characteristics of his that I will carry with me and pass down to my own kids of course. But the one thing that I’ll always remember is, he took his role as father very seriously. He was there. Always. And I’ll always thank him for that.

And so moving forward, I hope to encourage each and every one of you to, if nothing else, “Be the Dad.”

 

 

 
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Posted by on June 21, 2016 in Uncategorized

 

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Is The Tide Turning?

“Hot damn!” I honestly yelled this out loud when I saw this commercial for Tide featuring a dad dealing with three messy kids. Three messy daughters no less! This guy is my freakin’ hero! So is the ad executive who pushed this concept through.

It may seem trivial to some. But seeing dads represented as the ones doing the house work and taking care of the kids is something we need more of. Screen Shot 2015-12-29 at 5.05.46 PMWe aren’t all helpless beer chugging, ESPN addicts who can’t figure out how to start a washing machine. We know how to cook, we know how to clean toilets and fold laundry. We create household budgets, make school lunches, compare prices, iron, make beds, know our way around a vacuum (and empty it when it’s full). We know what a dryer sheet is for and yes, we have opinions about laundry detergent. OK, we lose socks. But hey, we’re not perfect … yet.

None-the-less. Anything that presents fathers managing the day to day of raising our kids is a huge plus and helps counter all of the negative stereotypes. Yes, dead beat dads exist. But look around any aisle at the grocery store and you’ll see more and more dads with two kids in the cart and a third in tow comparing prices of pancake mix and choosing the best tomatoes.

So my hats off to Tide. Keep em’ comin’! Next let’s see a divorced dad cooking a chicken dinner and ensuring he and his kids sit down at the dinner table together! (A boy can dream.)

 

 
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Posted by on December 29, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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Music To My Ears

I am a huge fan of the arts and what they can mean to a child both academically and emotionally. Along with art and design, music has been a focal point of my own career and while I haven’t forced it down my kids’ throats, I’ve encouraged them to pursue and explore all aspects of music. We share it, discuss it and listen to all genres and styles in our house. Even when one of the kids “discovers” music her mom and I find somewhat questionable, it opens the door for terrific discussions about culture, taste, history, what sort of message they want to promote and a plethora of other topics. All of which provides moments of communication, learning and understanding. Now the eldest is determined to become a singer and continues to search out vocal styles from all styles of music from Beyonce, to Carrie Underwood, to Janis Joplin to Etta James to Lana Del Rey.

Another has a natural ear that no doubt will lead to more exploration and likely a lot of songwriting. And most recently our middle child joined the middle school band. Her instrument of choice? The trumpet. And I couldn’t be more thrilled.

Just knowing she’ll continue to learn music and music theory puts my mind at ease. It’ll give her something positive to focus on, build her self esteem, provide positive support from both classmates and adults and provide her with a creative outlet she’ll carry with her the rest of her life.

Music is not just background noise. It is a means of exploring emotions, of creating energy, providing us with a means of expressing our emotions and dealing with pain. It exercises our brains in ways nothing else can. It is so more than just a song on the radio. It becomes a part of our memories and a part of who we are. And while there will no doubt be some sounds coming from our house in the coming months that may be a bit sour, the fact that my children are embracing it and taking steps to make the arts an important part of their lives is truly music to my ears.

 
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Posted by on September 1, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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The Pushback Top 10 of Divorced Kids

When my daughter was four I told her to take the gum out of her mouth before we sat down for dinner. “You’re ruining my LIFE!” was the response I got. I told her, “Wow, hadn’t really anticipated ruining your life until you were 13, so I’m WAY ahead of the game.”

As parents our decisions are sometimes met with hateful resistance. I’m pretty sure it’s a sign you love your kids if you’re told how much theyFotoliaComp_34861400_4phGROBYL2KdLisCNSqaTcl8idEYHapB hate you from time to time. We weren’t put on this earth to be their best friend, rather protect them from the world and themselves as they go through different stages of development. And we all know that kids will use anything in an attempt to push our buttons and get us to change our position on things.

Driving to work this morning I was reflecting on some of my favorite pushbacks from the past thirteen years. Thought it would be fun to create the Top 10 pushback phrases we hear from our children. A few are unique to divorced kids, but most are applicable to any child. If you’ve got one not on the list don’t hesitate to share here or on Facebook (facebook.com/lifeasadivorceddad) or Twitter (@divorceddadlife).

And now the list!

Number 10. Everyone else’s parents are letting them go!
Number 9. This wouldn’t be an issue if you and mom (dad) hadn’t gotten divorced.
Number 8. You wouldn’t understand (which flows directly into number 7)
Number 7. It was different when you were my age.
Number 6. You’re ruining my life!
Number 5. I don’t do half the things my friends do.
Number 4. Mom (dad) let’s me do it at her (his) house.
Number 3. You’re MEAN!
Number 2. If it were (insert sibling’s name) you’d let them do it!
And the number 1 pushback we hear from our kids when they don’t like our answer: “Now I know why mom (dad) divorced you.”

Twitter: @billfilipiak
Facebook: facebook.com/lifeasadivorceddad

 
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Posted by on June 19, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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