David Hancock, Staff Writer

Dear readers,

For those of you who don’t know my family very well, I have a really wise dad. My dad works in property management, which is a fancy term for being a landlord, which is a fancy term for being a Jack-of-all-trades fix-it-guy who also collects rent. Being that, my dad has always been very keen on making sure that me and my two brothers (one older, one younger) are fully equipped to handle adult life, which is fancy for being able to get crap done.

My dad is big on work, and in making sure his kids are able to do it. Dad has been taking me and my brothers with him to work basically since we could crawl, and we don’t just go with him to work, we work with him. We’d help him with everything, from installing a new toilet to replacing tiles to painting.

When I was a kid I thought that working with Dad was about getting things done faster. I mean, he always says, “Many hands make light work,” but honestly, he could’ve gotten the work done faster on his own. My dad bought us to work, not because he wanted us to work, but because he wanted us to know how to work. He wanted us to know how to replace a toilet and re-tile a floor and change a lightbulb.

My dad is a wise teacher, and not just through actions, but also through words. The wise words of my father are known in my family as “Dadisms.” “Many hands make light work,” is just the tip of the Dadism iceberg, which much more wisdom hidden beneath the surface.

All Dadisms have a few things in common: simple, short, useful. For example, my father says, “That’s what we needed!” when the Giants score from behind and says, “We’ll take it!” when they score from ahead. At first glance, I thought these saying had little relevance, but when I looked more deeply at it I realized that my dad has just subconsciously taught me how to be grateful and proud for what I’ve been given. I will rejoice in the unexpected blessings I am given and I will graciously take any blessings beyond that.

If you’re hungry for more Dadisms you can ask me or my dad and we’ll be happy to feed you some wisdom, but for now I only have one more Dadism to tell you: “It’s a fixable problem.”

This Dadism is very close to my heart, as I’ve heard it almost every time I’ve come to my dad with a problem in my entire life. Whenever I was stressed about schoolwork or drama with friends or if I otherwise overextended myself my dad would tell me it’s a fixable problem. That’s all he said, and that’s all I needed. I don’t need someone to walk me through how to fix my problems, because I already know that. I don’t think anyone needs that, because we already know what to do deep down. All of our problems are fixable, we just need to be reminded of that sometimes.

I’ve never been a “manly” guy, with facial hair and muscles and athletic ability; and that’s something I struggled with a lot growing up. The world tries to tell you that men are just big and strong and hairy, but my dad taught me what it meant to really be a man. Being a man means being thankful for what you’ve been given. It means fixing problems. It means being responsible. It means working, hardly and humbly. It means putting others before yourself.

For me, being a man, means being like my dad.

David Hancock, proud son of Doug Hancock