4:05 p.m. : I start driving home from work.

4:17 p.m. : My wife calls to see if I can pick up some things from the store on the way home.

4:49 p.m. : I arrive home, grocery-less.

Dad brain. I have a serious case of the dad brain. Don’t know what that is? Well, let me enlighten you. Having a dad brain increases your chance of forgetting things by approximately one million percent. 

When I was driving home yesterday, I had a severe case of the dad brain, so much so that within a span of about 20 minutes, I completely forgot that I was on my way to the grocery store and instead drove my dad-brained self straight home. Because Dads.

If you’re a dad, you know what I’m talking about. There are things in this world we are just plain bad at doing and no matter how hard we try, we usually screw it up. Yes, yes, we’re good at doing lots of other things like killing bugs and teaching our kids how to wrestle, but let’s not delude ourselves: there is a short list of things that we will always be bad at. 

But what can we do about it? I’ll tell you what we can do: We can make it known, once and for all, that asking us to do any of these things will end in a job poorly done. With this article, you have the power to warn those you love that, while you are an awesome dad who loves his family, you are just plain bad at doing some things. 

And if you’re a wife reading this, this is your chance to be vindicated; to be declared 100% right that, yes, your husband really has lost his mind when it comes to doing some things.

So, without further ado, I present to you the list of things dads are eternally bad at doing, and how wives can help:

1 | Getting the wrong thing at the store.

“Please get eggs, milk, and apples.”

“Sure, honey. Will do.”

30 minutes later, I return to the house with eggs, milk, and one of those giant buckets of cheeseballs.

“Did you get the apples?”

“… Shoot.”

If I had a nickel for every time this exact scenario played out, I would just use the extra cash laying around my house as toilet paper (probably because I’d forget toilet paper at the store).

Wives: If you send us to the store to get something, go ahead and text us a list.

2 | Dressing the kids.

What’s wrong with dressing my daughter for church in a twirly pink skirt with a slightly different colored pink shirt, especially when I can cap off the outfit with her dirty tennis shoes and yet another shade of pink socks? It’s all pink, right?

Wives: If we’re responsible for dressing the kids for a nice event, go ahead and give us some suggestions or, better yet, lay out some clothes for us.

3 | Folding laundry.

I’m pretty sure that aliens make my wife’s clothes. Whenever I get them out of the dryer, I usually can’t figure out which way is up. Now, before assuming I have the IQ of a small rock, let me point out that this very struggle actually trended on Twitter. Seriously.

Wives: Give us a training session or, better yet, you might just want to lower your expectation on what the end product is going to look like.

4 | Getting too riled-up about sports.

Whether it’s watching a game on TV or watching our kids play a game, us dads have a tendency to meltdown just like a toddler when we don’t get what we want, namely, a win. I don’t deal with this particular struggle as much but it is nevertheless prevalent in the dad-world.

Wives: If your husband fits the mold on this one, it’s best to just let him be in the moment and then, later – like, after the weekend – talk about the importance of managing emotions in some remote, unconnected way.

5 | Remembering stuff (a/k/a dad brain).

“Do you remember that conversation we had with your mom?”
“Seriously? You were sitting right here wearing your favorite blue polo and it was raining outside and we had just won the lottery.”
“…I got nothin,’ babe.”

Our minds operate like finely crafted machines when it comes to remembering things like sports statistics. But when it comes to remembering most anything else, our minds resemble something more akin to a 1971 Ford Pinto which had the unfortunate habit of erupting into flames on low-speed rear-end collisions.

Wives: I heard advice on this before, but I can’t seem to remember it right now.