This week’s Dad Flashes depart from their regular format to offer a public service for men who might be on the cusp of reaching their mid-50s, closing in on the second decade of marriage, or having their daughters catapult into teenagehood. For your sake, here are a few lessons learned by someone who already hit those milestones.

1. REMAIN BLISSFULLY IGNORANT. When you catch your wife watching you and then nodding to herself as if she’s just resolved something, if her response to your question of “Watcha thinking?” is “Nothing much,” you will undoubtedly be better off if you decline to probe any further.

2. ANSWER CALLS TO ACTION. When your wife starts putting stars and exclamation points alongside some of the items on the “honey-do” lists she posts for you on the refrigerator, you should realize it’s for your own good if you stop screwing around and begin checking some of them off.

3. BE WARY OF ILL-ADVISED INSTINCTS. When you walk across a park and discover a group of twentysomething guys having a great time kicking a ball around, it will inevitably bring back memories of your youthful exploits on athletic fields, but you should pause for only a moment – and then keep on walking. As much fun as it looks like they’re having, you need to stop kidding yourself. If you tried to keep up with them, you wouldn’t be able to find a drugstore stocked with enough Ben-Gay to get you through the next 48 hours.

4. DON’T TAKE YOUR KIDS’ DISDAIN TOO PERSONALLY. If you find yourself getting really worked up trying to convince your teenagers you really were cool once, you should probably accept it’s time to throw in the towel. At least you can take some consolation in knowing (okay assuming) that you are not as unhip as you, at their age, thought your parents were.

5. IGNORE SOCIAL MEDIA JEALOUSY. Just because your spouse is friends with all of her old beaus on Facebook and none of your old girlfriends have friend-requested you, and the two that you did reach out to either declined or never responded, it doesn’t mean you are any less lovable than the woman you married.

ANOTHER SPECIAL NOTE: While we thought our family was far past the days of 1/2-year birthday celebrations, we’ll revert back to that tradition as this blog reaches its 26th week of every-Saturday postings: “Happy 1/2-year birthday, Dad Flashes!”

Typical dad relaxing in recliner.WARNING: The “lessons” offered here are intended for entertainment purposes only and Dad Flashes, Inc., offers no guarantees of their efficacy or applicability to any other person’s life, living or dead.

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