Dad jokes suck. You've thought so all your life. And then, one day, you're discussing Vladimir Putin's latest supervillain antics with your friends, and suddenly you feel the need to be funny. You may fully realize what you're about to say is so awful it's going to make your friends burn you at the stake. But you can't help it. Like the first time you masturbated, a strange feeling inside you is forcing your hand.
"Actually, I've been thinking about moving to Moscow, but there's no point RUSSIAN into things."
And then everyone beats you up and never talks to you again.
This is especially embarrassing if you're on a romantic dinner and the only person who hears you is your date.
Has this happened to you yet? Well, it's going to. At some point, dad jokes are going to enter your life, and they never really go away. Although becoming a father can greatly accelerate the process, getting infected with acute paterlocusitis actually has nothing to do with being a parent. I have to proofread every column I write thrice to catch the errant awful dad pun that has managed to inch its way in (my success rate varies). It's the same with most of my friends, children or no children; these crappy attempts at comedy just keep creeping into the conversations, to the point where we're starting to ignore them or, worse, find them funny.
Clearly, this is a side effect of aging. Maybe we've just become so jaded and/or experienced in the ways of the world that dad jokes seem like relatively innocent things instead of the abominations that they clearly are. Maybe our brains are slowly going soft as the ever-waiting grave is inching nearer and nearer. Whatever the reason, it's a situation that smells worse than a dog with no nose. Goddammit.