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All Types of Dads ...and the Gifts to give Them

15:00 June 14, 2021
By: Julie Mitchell

Father's Day is coming up, and how annoying is it when you're trying to think of a good gift and all you can find are lists recommending whiskey stones? There's so many "gifts for dad" articles, but their idea of a dad is if Paul Bunyan was in I Love Lucy. Comically masculine yet weirdly stoic? What folks need to understand is that there are TYPES of dads, easily identifiable categories, and they all want very different things. This is a comprehensive list GUARANTEED to have a category for your dad (or your money back!), so let's take a moment to tour through (and find a perfect gift!) for all the types of dads.

Sports Dad

Very popular in Disney Channel original movies and, honestly, most movies, this dad is a coach both on and off the field. He's athletic and a little demanding, potentially played sports before or just way too into teamwork. These dads are always there to cheer you on no matter what you're doing (let's hope!) and will do it in style. Some great gifts for a sports dad: a whistle, new sneakers, golden retriever puppy, camping equipment, a DVD copy of Groundhog Day, lemonade mix, Applebee's gift card, and tickets to "the big game." Have fun!!

Literary Dad

A literary dad maybe used to be a professor, or writes plays, or loves maps. He is gentle and knowledgeable. He probably never built you a treehouse, but he will happily tell you about all the stars. You can often find a literary dad reading in a chair by the fire or jotting something down in a notebook he keeps in his back pocket. A hit at sleepovers and during the teenage years in general, literary dads are usually very lax about rules because a.) they trust you and because b.) they're thinking about something else. Some great gifts for a literary dad: anything from Barnes & Noble, expensive pens, slippers, a small bonsai tree, Applebee's gift card, new glasses, chocolate from another country, and stamps. Enjoy!

Dead Dad

Sometimes our dads die, and this doesn't stop Father's Day from happening. This is okay because you can still get a gift, it's just for you instead of him. Maybe your dad died before you were old enough to remember, or recently after a long relationship, or you just met him and he died, or you never knew him and you heard that he died. However it happened, he's not here, but you are, and it's okay to get yourself a gift on Father's Day because your dad is one of the reasons you exist and, sometimes, that deserves a gift. Gifts for yourself on Father's Day are easier because you know yourself, so you can just get something you would like, but I'm happy to provide some examples if you don't have any good ideas. Gifts for you can include: Applebee's gift card, pedicure (if you don't want color, you can get clear; it just feels nice), DVD copy of Trading Places, spicy cashews, jigsaw puzzle, whole pizza, new shower curtain, journal, fancy phone case, flowers, tattoo, or expensive moisturizer (side note: these also work if your dad isn't dead but isn't in your life, or he is but he's bad at it). Live it up!

Hippie Dad

This is a dad that has definitely done more drugs than he's told you about and has at least one guitar, even though you've never seen him play (or he plays all the time; interestingly there's no middle ground it's one or the other). A hippie dad mostly wears sweatpants and t-shirts of bands that broke up years ago and has a lot of random Asian inspired decorations. Hippie dads have a huge record collection that they are constantly pulling out to tell you facts about. Some great gifts for a hippie dad: tie-dye kit, hacky sack, book about meditating, robe made from hemp, a gift card to Applebee's, edibles, beaded curtains, mancala board, blacklight bulbs, and organic pasta. Stay groovy!

Suburban Dad

Suburban dads have the minivan, the full-time job that makes them wear a blazer everyday, and the farm house sink. What they don't have is class consciousness and a skincare routine, but hopefully they're working on it. Suburban dads can help with the SAT because they read the Wall Street Journal and can help with salads because they have a cherry tomato garden out back. With a full freezer in the garage filled with off brand sodas, is there anything they can't do? Potential gifts for a suburban dad: themed Monopoly set, "funny" ties, golf pencils, fishing memorabilia, something related to the show Cheers, seasonal M&M'S, books about JFK, a gift card to Applebee's, socks, and a lampshade shaped like a boat. Keep truckin'!

There are obviously more specific subcategories (for example a World War II dad), but they all fit under one of the broader categories above (a World War II dad is a type of literary dad). I hope this list is helpful to you in your quest to find your dad the perfect gift for Father's Day that lets him know, "I love you, but you should still pay for my therapy." In this crazy world and in these crazy times, everyone is different and that's beautiful, but there are also things we all share, like loving Apple-bee's.

Happy Father's Day!!

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