Forget the tie, the cologne and the power drill. What I want for Father's Day is a trip back in time. Back to the days before my two children stopped calling me "Daddy" and began referring to me exclusively as "Dad."
If you're not a father, you may believe those titles are synonymous like "Coke" and "Coca-Cola."
You're wrong. To a child, "Daddy" is the guy who gives you a bicycle for your birthday, helps you paint really cool racing stripes on the fenders, and teaches you how to ride it without breaking any important body parts. "Dad" is the guy you hail when the bike is broken, or that the vehicle you really need to cruise the neighborhood is a fully-loaded Harley-Davidson motorcycle.
When your "Daddy" does something nice, like buying you a chain of toy stores, you give him hugs and kisses and vows of eternal love.
When your "Dad" does something nice, like buying you a chain of toy stores, you mumble a half-hearted "thanks" even though you've already forgotten what it was, exactly, that he did for you.
When you want to be tickled, no one is more accommodating than "Daddy." Yet, when your lungs ache from laughing and you're about to wet your pants and the activity's fun quotient has been depleted, you command your pain-in-the-ribs "Dad" to knock it off, pronto.
As you open the huge, gaily-wrapped Christmas present your father has given you, the old man is without question the greatest "Daddy" in the world. When you discover that the package contains clothes, something you don't want or something you already own, his rank is reduced to "Dad."
And as every child knows, when you've scraped your knee and need a kiss to make it better ... well, you make a beeline for Mommy. But if she's at work or out of town, you settle for a healing smooch from "Daddy" ... unless your knee hurts a whole lot, in which case you ask "Dad" for the approximate time "Mommy" is coming home.