Father’s Day here in the U.S., and around the country grills will be fired up, ties will be gifted, and Dad jokes will be told to the family. It’s the one day of the year we celebrate the silliest, most loving, and most embarrassing moments with our dads. But it almost wasn’t a holiday at all.
first Father’s Day celebration was in 1910 in Washington State. And although Mother’s Day was a federally recognized holiday in 1914, it wasn’t 1972 until that Father’s Day became a national holiday. (Interestingly, during the 1920s and '30s, groups fought to create one “Parents’ Day” because activists believed that both parents should be celebrated together.) Now, the holiday rakes in a whopping $14 billion a year, not to mention a whole lot of Father’s Day backrubs and handmade trinkets.
Whether you’re giving your Dad golf clubs or a home-cooked meal, there are many reasons to celebrate them. One of our favorites: our dads’ uncanny talent for embarrassing us. Ahead, we’ve rounded up 10 stories of the most hilarious, embarrassing things our dads have done. They may have given us totally red faces, but we love them nonetheless.
My dad volunteered to take our clique of neighborhood kids trick or treating. "When I was in middle school, I had a huge crush on my next door neighbor. On Halloween, my dad volunteered to take our clique of neighborhood kids (me and my crush included) trick or treating. In one of the darker suburban neighborhoods, I had a great idea: I motioned for my dad to come over to me and whispered in his ear, 'Say we all have to hold hands to cross the street.' Genius, right? No. My dad, who immediately understood what I was doing, decided that instead of helping me, he was actually going to be The Worst. He announced '[Crush's name], Jess wants to hold hands with you.' I immediately denied it as if it were a preposterous suggestion. Thank god my best friend was there to back me up. My brother, however, relentlessly teased me the rest of the night. Thanks, Dad." —Jess
I'll hear my dad from literally across the store yelling miscellaneous things for the sole purpose of embarrassing me. "I have too many embarrassing dad stories to count because my dad's the weirdest person alive, but this one's probably my favorite. He's done this for so long now, but every time I go to a convenience store with my dad/family (since we all live in different cities now, it's usually when we're on vacation — getting essentials from a CVS or grabbing groceries), I'll be shopping in an aisle alone, minding my own business, and I'll hear my dad from literally across the store yelling miscellaneous things for the sole purpose of embarrassing me. He's done 'SOPHIE, I FOUND YOUR DIARRHEA MEDICINE!' and 'SOPHIE, THE CRABS MEDICINE IS OVER HERE!' and 'SOPHIE, COME GET YOUR HERPES MEDICINE!' and 'SOPHIE, I FOUND SOME STUFF FOR YOUR RASH!' Every single time. Literally nothing on the planet makes my face redder, but at the same time…nothing on the planet makes me laugh harder, either. Dads are the best." —Sophie
My mom called my dad from her bed at the hospital, "JAMIE, YOU SENT MARGARET TO SCHOOL WITH BEER?" "It was 1993. My mom was on bedrest at the hospital, pregnant with twins, so my dad was in charge at home with me (I was 2) and my older sister, who was in kindergarten at the time. One day my mom gets a call at the hospital from the principal of the school. 'Hi Carolyn, who is making the school lunches for Margaret?' 'Jamie is at home with the girls,' my mom said. 'Well today Margaret was sent to school with a can of O'Doul's non-alcoholic beer.' "My mom called my dad from her bed at the hospital, 'JAMIE, YOU SENT MARGARET TO SCHOOL WITH BEER?' My dad's reasoning was, 'It was non-alcoholic! We ran out of juice boxes and plus she loves the taste!' To this day he still doesn't really find issue with this." —Beatrice
My dad had to go with me to get my nose pierced. "My dad had to go with me to get my nose pierced because I was 17 at the time. We went to a tattoo parlor, and my piercer had a lot of ink. She was wearing a tank top and two names tattooed on either side of her back were visible. One of the names happened to be my middle name so naturally, my dad asked her if that was her name because that was my middle name (which because of the placement, style, and art around the name, it clearly was not her name). I felt the blood draining from my face as the piercer said, 'No, that was my daughter's name. She was stillborn.' My dad awkwardly apologized." —Molly
Needless to say I never asked him to turn down NPR after that. "As a teen, I was big into team sports and always had my dad pick me up after practice. So one time, he showed up a little early and was listening to NPR really loudly with the doors open. For some reason, I found this incredibly embarrassing because I remember getting into the car very quickly with my head down and then telling my dad, 'UGH, that is so uncool. Please don't do that,' in the car ride home. Bratty, I know. My father, like any normal person, was fed up with the antics of his 15-year-old daughter. So the next day when he picked me up from practice, he made sure to show up a full HOUR EARLY and blasted polka music at full volume with the windows down. He then proceeded to stand up on the hood of the car and scream my name and that he loved me, loudly. Needless to say I never asked him to turn down NPR after that." —Elysia
He opened up about his Woodstock drugs to my entire grade. "My dad came into my high school to talk about his life as a rock 'n' roll DJ in the 1960s/70s. He was talking to my entire grade about Woodstock, and when he opened it up for a Q&A and people started asking him questions about the festival, he didn't know any answers and admitted that he was on drugs the entire time (and he says EVERYONE that was there was on drugs). He said, 'If anyone tells you they remember Woodstock, they are lying and weren't really there.' So basically he opened up about his Woodstock drugs to my entire grade of 16-year-olds." —Lucie
My dad bought me a paper weight for Christmas that was literally a vagina. "On time my Dad bought me a paper weight for Christmas that was literally a vagina inside an oval-shaped piece of glass. I'm not sure he realized it looked so much like a vagina when he bought it for me, but everyone who has ever seen it since asks me, 'Where did you get that vag paper weight?' And I'm like, 'My pops got it for me.'" —David
If there could be a dad version of Patti Stanger/ Millionaire Matchmaker, it would be him. "My dad was never the dad to be like, 'Never bring boys over!' He was more like, 'Get out there and get laid!' If there could be a dad version of Patti Stanger/ Millionaire Matchmaker, it would be him! " —Tori
My dad comes out and says, "Hey guys, wanna see my rocks?" "My dad is very proud of the stuff that he has collected over the years. We live in a pretty well-off neighborhood, and people will throw out some amazing pieces of furniture, bikes, toys, etc. And it was my dad's prerogative to pick it up and bring it all home. And mostly, it was amazing. "But the problem came when I was a freshman in college, and I had finally found friends who wanted to hang out with me outside of campus. Over the summer, I had two new friends over to my house, and we were hanging on the front porch of my house when my Dad comes out and says, 'Hey guys, wanna see my rocks?' Of course I was mortified, because it sounded like he was asking my friends to see his testicles. But my male friend happily said, 'Uh SURE!' and my Dad walked him to the front of the house and showed him REAL ROCKS IN FRONT OF THE HOUSE. He had found them somewhere, brought them home and put them in front of our bushes so cars couldn't run over our rose bushes. But I was red faced for hours." —Sarah
I turn around and see my dad sitting in the chair getting HIS nails done. "In sixth grade, I had a birthday party at a nail salon. All the girls got cute manicures, danced around, ate pizza, etc. And then I turn around and see my dad sitting in the chair getting HIS nails done. Granted, he said it wasn't polish and just a buffing, but I was still totally mortified. NOW, I couldn't care less — and after seeing many gnarly man hands and toes, I'm all for that sort of male grooming." —Nikki