12 things I admire about my dad – By Emily Jones

12 things I admire about my dad – By Emily Jones

[Note from Tim Jones: This week, I’ve invited my high school daughter Emily to take the reins of this column for the first time. I told her to write about whatever struck her fancy. Then I explained to her that “whatever strikes your fancy” means “whatever, dude.” I am confident that whatever she writes about will be in good taste and handled with maturity. See you next week.] 

Hi, I’m Emily. My dad, Tim Jones, writes some stupid humor blog called View from the … Something or Other. I really have no idea what it’s called. I never read it. Because it’s like totally lame. He thinks he’s really funny, like the time he wrote that the dishwasher almost destroyed his marriage to my mom. Yeah, like my mom is ever going to cheat on my dad with the dishwasher. 

Not that I would blame her. My dad is so boring. He’s always telling me stuff like “Kevin needs to leave by 9pm. It’s a school night.” That’s so unfair! All my friends’ parents let their boyfriends sleep over on school nights. And he’s constantly getting on my case if I get less than a B on a test. Gimme a break. He always likes to remind me that he was valedictorian at his high school and got straight A’s. And I tell him, “Wow. That’s impressive. And now you write a humor blog that five people read. I see what you mean about the importance of good grades, Dad.” 

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Bad ideas in the news

Bad ideas in the news

Every now and then, I like to read quirky stories about people who are in the news for having made really bad decisions. I find it helps me feel better about myself. If you’re having a rough day, if you’re questioning your judgment skills or perhaps just kicking yourself for some lame decision you made without fully thinking it through, cheer up. At least you’re not one of these people or businesses ….

Drunk driver arrested after trying to make a cell phone call using breathalyzer

In Coburg, Germany, a man named Bernhard Becker was pulled over for driving erratically. Police, suspecting he was intoxicated, attempted to administer a breathalyzer. When handed the device, Becker, thinking it was an iPhone, attempted to call his attorney without success. Things went downhill for Mr. Becker when, attempting to tidy up his hair, he grabbed the officer’s radar gun, mistaking it for a blow dryer. Rumor has it Apple is developing a new breathalyzer app for the iPhone 6.

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Freshman Year College 1,375-Item Bare Essentials Packing Checklist

Freshman Year College 1,375-Item Bare Essentials Packing Checklist

Every year about this time, thousands of families endure an emotionally trying ritual: Sending their young high school graduate off to college – or in the case of my neighbor Bert Zablinski’s under-achieving boy Freddie, a four-week correspondence course for road construction flag operators. For many distraught parents it means driving hundreds of miles in a tightly cramped car filled with college gear, then coming to a startling realization – they forgot to bring one essential item: Their child. Don’t let this happen to you.

The experience of sending your offspring to college is different for every family. But there is one feeling almost every parent shares: a desperate hope they’ll have the winning Powerball lottery tickets so they can pay for college. That’s their Plan A. Most parents don’t have a Plan B, now that by latest estimates the average cost of four years of college recently has surpassed the GNP of Uruguay.

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How to turn on a light in less than 23 steps

How to turn on a light in less than 23 steps

I consider myself an expert handyman. If there is something broken, stuck, loose or making a sound it’s not supposed to be making, I possess an innate ability to quickly identify the problem – and within minutes make that problem significantly worse than it was before I began fiddling with it. There are three things every homeowner should instinctively know:

  • #1: The location of your main circuit breaker box: In most homes, this is conveniently located in the garage behind a clearly displayed grey metal panel. In our house, it’s conveniently located behind three boxes of stuffed animals, four crates of ancient photo albums, and nine cans of 14-year old dried house paint. Our circuit breaker was last seen in spring, 2003.
  • #2: The location of your main water shut-off valve: This could save you thousands of dollars if ever your pipes burst. This valve is typically found somewhere inside the house on the first floor, either in your laundry room or front hall closet. In our case, it’s conveniently located nine feet up our fireplace. Apparently I must have pissed off some plumber as our house was being built.
  • #3: Righty-Tighty, Lefty-Loosy. That little lesson sure could have come in handy had I known about it before my gas grill’s propane tank gas leak and subsequent explosion during the surprise party we threw in the kitchen of our former friend, Agnes Turlington in 1995.

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Who’s the King (or Queen) of Your Castle?

Who’s the King (or Queen) of Your Castle?

It starts out innocently enough. Your little four-year old princess Tara insists she’s scared and can’t get to sleep. Can she sleep with mommy and daddy? Pleeeeease? Against your better judgment, you relent and let her snuggle in bed with you – just this once.

Fast forward. Tara, now eight years old whines about having to eat her peas. Against your better judgment, you let her off the hook but still let her have dessert – after all, it’s cookies ‘n cream ice cream, her favorite. Before you know it, you wake up one day and your little angel is now a teenager and you suddenly discover that she’s running the show, making all sorts of drop everything demands that we parents cave into because it’s just less work not to engage in another battle. How did this all happen? Personally, I blame it on Obamacare.

I am the father of two high-spirited teenage girls.  As many of you know, I am a highly sought-out expert on parenting. My third parenting book, Timeouts, Tasers and Other Tools of Modern Parenting, addresses the challenge many parents face when it seems their teenagers suddenly are in the driver’s seat (in some cases literally). Bribery and blackmail are both tactics that I strongly recommend for most confrontations with your teenage offspring. And for you moms (as well as you dads who are in touch with your feminine side), don’t underestimate the power of a good display of sobbing. Totally disarms most whiny teenagers. But it takes practice. Start by sniffling and work your way up to the tears.

Take this quiz to determine whether you’re still the king or queen of your castle or whether the peasants have stormed the castle and taken you hostage:

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