Mister Gaga

As a 54-year-old man with a child still in high school, there are things I am banned from doing in my efforts to remain “cool” in the eyes of my daughter and her friends. Still No. 1 on that list is “Do not dance” – any style, anywhere and certainly nowhere near our daughter if she is entertaining some of her classmates.

Also high on that list is for me not to dress like any celebrities under the age of 30. Actually, it’s under the age of 60, but hey, I have my pride. Besides, I’m not interested in dressing like Justin Bieber. My style targets are more like Daniel Craig, Denzel Washington or George Clooney.

A few weeks ago on a Sunday, our daughter was working on a school project. She was pretty much on her own and was constructing a display board on Vasco da Gama. She was making it on the kitchen table, and her finishing touch was to do a timeline in glitter. When finished it looked really great, but we had to start getting ready to go to church.

Just before we left, I took another close look at the display board. At that moment something made me sneeze, and I ended up blowing glitter all over my face and hair. My wife tried to wipe it off me as I drove, but I told her that no one would notice. The first hint that I was wrong was that our daughter wanted to sit with her friends instead of us.

As I sat in the pew I noticed directly in front of me was a young couple with a little girl. The little girl was facing us and kept staring at me. She suddenly turned back around and I heard her tell her mother, “That man’s face is all sparkly!” The mother told her to be quiet, but then I saw her take a peek at me. She then nudged her husband, and he took a quick look.

From behind, I could see both of their bodies shaking as they were desperately trying to suppress their laughter during the sermon. When it came time for us to offer each other a sign of peace, the little girl gushed, ‘My dad said you’re a princess!”

I cut the guy a break, for in about nine years when his little girl is 15, I’ll have the last laugh.