Remember that scene in Knocked Up where Katherine Heigl finds all the parenting books that Seth Rogen bought still in the Barnes & Noble bag? I think that's fairly typical. What to Expect When You're Expecting sat on my nightstand unopened for months, moonlighting as the world's most well-researched coaster. And most of the books targeted to new dads have an overtly syrupy tone, with book jackets featuring misty mornings on a lake or sepia-toned photos that wouldn't be out of place in the 'Thinking of You' section at Hallmark. Sure, it helps to know what a mucus plug is, but mostly guys need books that offers simple, streamlined, practical info that doesn't get bogged down with a lot of "medical diagrams" or "compound sentences."
Well have I got the book for you, Pops. Anyone out there looking for a fun, helpful read to give a new dad should check out Rules for my Unborn Son. It's written by Walker Lamond, a man whose penchant for Paul Stuart blazers, horn-rimmed glasses and vintage ties make me wonder if he was grown in the same Petri dish as Ira Glass. A TV producer and filmmaker by trade, Lamond started a blog - rulesformyunbornson.tumblr.com - upon hearing that he and wife were having a baby. It grew into a collection of short quotes, tips, and advice items - none longer than a dozen words - that's now in paperback, serving as "the ultimate instruction manual for becoming a gentleman." Even with 212 pages filled, nary one of these quips sounds tired or cliche. Here are just a few selections:
* Don't underestimate your fertility.
* Be beholden to no one. Pay cash.
* Have a signature dish, even if it's your only one.
* Don't boast about projects in progress. Celebrate their completion.
* If you've made your point, stop talking.
Rules for My Unborn Son gets four and half beans from The Daily Bean. And remember: Keep a copy of your letters. It makes it easier on your biographer.