Dads Through The Decades
We’ve been thinking about dads. While no two dads are exactly alike, our memories of them – what they looked like, what we watched together, the music they played in the car – are a product of their time.
With that in mind, we embarked on our Dads Through The Decades project, asking you to share your memories of your Dad in the decade of your youth.
Those stories (combined with a few of our own) are helping us to create some fantastic paper doll style illustrations of ‘Dad’ stretching back from the ‘00s to the ‘50s – just in time for Father’s Day.
Meet ’90s Dad
‘90s Dad was spoilt for choice when he looked to TV for fathering role models.
Should he turn to the seat-of-your-pants approach of Homer Simpson? Lay down the law like Uncle Phil? Or, revel in his job as teller of embarrassing tales as per Jack Geller?
He was almost certainly there from the very first moment you were born: by the ‘90s, 97% of dads were present in the delivery room.
The day that Robbie left Take That, ‘90s Dad soothed your broken heart and helped you dry your tears. Every single time that England lost on penalties – and when Gazza scored THAT goal – he showed you that real men cry too.
‘90s Dad fancied himself as being able to join in with Cool Britannia. He had the bucket hat and Reebok Classics to prove it. He also had the perfect Britpop record collection to soundtrack his newfound style. He claimed that ‘Wonderwall’ was practically his theme song and that he knew his ‘Parklife’ from his ‘Firestarter’.
And he stands by that. Even if you do remember him in a flammable looking shell suit with Simply Red and Wet Wet Wet on seemingly endless rotation in the car stereo (with its own super high-tech CD changer).
But ‘90s Dad rose above your jokes about his music taste. He bought you the Walkman you relied on to play your Spice Girls singles and your older brother’s copy of Nevermind until the tapes wore out.
He also didn’t mind (or at least pretended not to) when you used his arms as target practice for hours and hours while perfecting your slap bracelet technique.
On Saturday evenings, ‘90’s Dad sat with you and watched the latest goings-on in Crinkley Bottom. He laughed at Noel’s tales of life in the fictional village, and you laughed at Mr Blobby tripping over himself and falling down the stairs.
You cheered on the contenders and booed Wolf on Gladiators. ‘90s Dad, meanwhile, teased you with his dodgy impression of Referee John Anderson: “Contender, you will go on my first whistle. Gladiator, you will go on my second whistle. 3, 2, 1!”
He was forever standing on your carefully-laid Micro Machines booby traps, and – for some reason – didn’t appreciate that you were just making the house safe from a burglary by The Wet Bandits.
‘90s Dad didn’t judge you for wanting a Global Hypercolor t-shirt that changed colour as you got sweaty. And he quietly chuckled to himself as he watched you keep your Tamagotchi alive like it was a real responsibility.
‘90s Dad was an all ‘round good sport, even when for a while your favourite ‘sports kit’ was a Fat Willy’s Surf Shack bumbag full of Pogs.
Nice one ‘90s Dad: you were briiiiiiiiiilliaaaaaaaant!