TINKER, TAILOR, SOLDIER, SAILOR.

“A father has to be a provider, a teacher, a role model, but most importantly, a distant authority figure who can never be pleased. Otherwise, how will children ever understand the concept of God?”-Stephen Colbert.
If you ever lived in a closed community as a Kenyan child or anywhere around the world then you definitely learnt that our fathers come in different packages altogether. I mean, it’s the craziest thing, but these boys turned men just happened to start a family and it hits them right in the face that they’re now responsible for little kids running around bumping their heads into everything and bound forevermore to the wifey. Honestly, it’s scarier than it sounds…so what do these guys do? Remember, it is our choices that show who we truly are, far more than our abilities. Anyone can be a father but not a dad, so let’s search for the true ones beneath this ink-studded article.
The Tinker.
Well, let’s just say he’s the clueless one; the one who tries, fails and picks up right where he left. All true dads can be found here under the shining banner of ignorance (I mean come on Jacob; you can’t give your second lastborn son a new coat of ‘many’ colors and not expect his arsenine older brothers to throw him into a pit and sell him off to Egypt…it’s textbook sibling rivalry). They’re not entirely ignorant, I mean most of them watched their dads raise them but truth is, they weren’t paying attention at all. So instead they are left to wonder which wire to cut, the red or the blue one or the red one that almost looks like orange(Fun fact;*men were raised to know only the seven colors of the rainbow, black and white, case rested). The passion that these men put into their families is entirely enormous despite their lacking know-how. They are the ones who were there all along; taking care of both mother and baby at their most vulnerable, getting the kids through school no matter what and undoubtedly always fixing their mistakes at the end of it all. They have not yet let go of their inner child and this inner child reaches out to the outer child, setting into motion an eternal bond.

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The Tailor.
The perfect one. They are on a social payroll of compliments; women wishing they had that good a man in their life, neighbourhood kids thinking a dad like that is wasted on his children and the church or social gatherings hailing him as a well suited Santa. He has all the charm of a hostage negotiator and solves every little problem without having to say those all too familiar words, Uliza mama yako (ask your mother). He is as rare and mystical as a Game of Thrones binge watcher, who only comes out to search for food because there’s no way they are stopping midway. I used to look at them,they had life figured out early and in my mind i felt like this was it; if ever i was to be a father, i was to be a tailor. Fitting the right clothes for the right people and doing it with finesse.

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The Soldier.
Every dad ever. Fatherhood is like being God,at some point in time everyone gets to hate you for putting your foot down for saying no when they wanted you to say yes. It’s a responsibility not to be taken too lightly; leave your children to do as they please and you get more that a few loose screws and lots of damaged personalities. The soldier is the strict one; a bit too strict for the children’s liking. You’ll be damned if they find you near their daughter, wait that stuff out bro…just until 3 years into the wedding just to make sure.
It’s pretty obvious why the strict dad is every dad’s default setting; it feels good to be king. It feels good to be in charge of a clan of your own,with your name as the banner that they fly. You are the protector of their realm and they appreciate that no matter how ballistic you may be.

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The Sailor.
He’s the one who got away.
Perhaps he died before the children got to really know him well and so in some sort of way he is the ultimate winner. He never failed and he is immortalised by the kids as this person who could never harm them but is watching over them from far away.
But there’s another, the castaway sailor. He is the deadbeat dad who cares little about what happens to the family. He feels like a hostage in his own home and shortens family quality time by leaving too early in the morning and always being the last to come back. On the outside,  people think he is this great provider and an even greater dad. Hell no,he’s just a good actor intending to disillusion others from the grim face that he really possesses.
For the greatest mark of a father is how he treats his children when no one is looking.

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And now i leave you with the greatest Father Son conversation in history. May the Fatherhood force be with you all

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Haha…he’s your father dude…accept it and move on!

Collin Atuti

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2 thoughts on “TINKER, TAILOR, SOLDIER, SAILOR.

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