As a dad to two young boys, I feel as though I’m entitled to say, “Enough with the questions already, kid!” on Father’s Day, of all days.

Father’s Day is supposed to be a day when a dad gets to do exactly what he wants to do. For me, that would mean a morning round of golf, followed by time with my family, and finishing with a celebration BBQ with my dad and and my father-in-law (it is these two jokers that helped mold us both into the parents we are today.)

I also understand that Father’s Day could be a pretty great opportunity for some “Get to Know Dad Even Better” time. If we’re asking questions anyway – which is pretty much guaranteed with my sons – then let’s talk about me.

I often think about a bunch of questions I wish I could have asked my grandfathers, which made me realize how happy I would be to answer those same questions for my boys.

So I’ve written them down.

With a list in hand, asking questions becomes an actual listening experience. You’re not silently working on your next thought while the answer to your previous question is coming at you, so you get to really take it in.

Maybe I’ll sit down with my dad this year to have this conversation, and maybe my kids will ask me a few of these questions, too. That wouldn’t be so bad.

Now the list of questions to ask dad on Father’s Day:  

  1. What was the coolest day of your life to date, not including the day you were married, or the day we were born?
  2. Who was the most interesting person you have even known or met?  
  3. Tell me two books you would recommend I read in my lifetime (with author, if possible).  
  4. What are two guiding principles you try to follow every day? (As an aside, here’s my answer:  live life to the fullest and try to see the bright side of things rather than the crud all the time.  There’s always crud if you look close enough; it takes a special charm to look for the positives in life).
  5. What was the worst day of your life? (This is a story opportunity. Be a good listener as there may be a lesson or two for you to take forward in life.)
  6. Did you know your grandparents? What were they like?  What were their hobbies, jobs, etc.? (I don’t think our kids know enough about our past, or past generations and what they had to deal with.)  
  7. If you could go on a trip today where would you go? What would you see and who would you take? 
  8. Who is the person who has most influenced you in life so far?  
  9. Besides your immediate family, who is your best friend?
  10. If you could impart one piece of parenting advice to me as your child, what would it be? 

Dads can be funny. Sometimes they won’t stop talking, other times they just want to listen. No matter what mood your dad is in on Father’s Day, we all like to be told we are loved.