Being A Single Dad with Aaron Gocs
Ok, so this is it. I’m a divorced, single dad with 2 kids. Look, I’m not going to win Dad of the year but as I told the courts, I'll give it a red hot go. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a total loser – I can teach them to kick a sick goal or do a bunny hop on their bikes. I try hard to set a good example for them but it’s hard to tell them to tidy up their school uniform when most of my clothes have gravy stains on them. Don’t judge me though – the rooster rolls should have been wrapped tighter, it always hurts when you're betrayed by a loved one like that (I love rooster rolls).
"I’m not going to win Dad of the year but as I told the courts, I'll give it a red hot go."
It’s not as if I’m not improving as a parent – in fact the improvement is quite rapid. For example something I've noticed as I progress through my life is the changing nature of what I’m keeping my eyes peeled for as I travel around town. When I was a teenager I looked for street signs to steal or houses to egg – now I’m upset when I can’t find a street because the sign has been stolen and I’d rather just eat eggs. Then when I turned 18 I was on the lookout for pubs and clubs to hang out at, these days my eyes are open for the best playgrounds I can find (nothing suss). See the single parent is on an endless search for the perfect playground, the right setup of swings, slides and see-saws means you might finally get a spare few minutes to catch up on last weeks footy results. You have to make sure to find the perfect table to sit at though, close enough that you can supervise, but just far enough away that they expect you to watch. “Look at me dad, I’m doing the thing on this equipment that it was designed to be done on” ...“yeah mate, I clocked that years ago”.
"...it’s hard to tell them to tidy up their school uniform when most of my clothes have gravy stains on them."
I try to take them to parks heaps because I don’t want them ending up like me. I worry about their future – society is changing all the time, there may not even be a competitive eating circuit when they're grown up! It’s so hard to peel them away from the TV, once they start watching they become like zombies who won’t even acknowledge me when I speak to them. The alternative isn’t great either... when they're so hyperactive and won’t keep still. I can’t really blame fizzy drinks either, because usually it’s me having a creaming soda spider. I suppose at least when they're hyperactive there's a good chance of them getting tired and going to bed early, finally giving me a chance to have the remote. Of course by then anything decent has probably finished... I’m starting to become an expert on the embarrassing bodies of England since that always seems to come on. Speaking of which, what’s going on there? I’m sure there are embarrassing bodies all over the world, but the English in particular like to get in front of the camera and let everybody know about theirs. Give me a camera and I'll show them an embarrassing body. We beat the poms in the cricket and I'll help us beat them in the dud rig contest.
Despite all of this, I do love my kids more than anything else and focusing on keeping them on track is a good excuse as to why I haven’t been able to sort my own life out properly. I look forward to raising them in the next few years as they grow while my collection of gravy stains grows.
Aaron Gocs is a comedian who enjoys a good feed, good jokes and the occasional stitch up.
Illustrations by Cyrus Bezyan.
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