dADDITUDE

By Philip Lerman

What do the sex lives of cave women, the music of Bob Dylan, and the batting styles of the New York Yankees have to do with surviving the craziness of fatherhood?

They’re all part of a new attitude called Dadditude – born in this rollicking,  fresh take on the foibles, pratfalls, and occasional successes of being a dad.

When Phil Lerman, about to turn 50, quits his job as the producer of one of the longest-running (and most macho) network TV shows ever, he believes a lifetime of management experience will carry him through his new job of full-time fatherhood. He’s sure that his years of controlling a wild pack of roving producers have prepared him to conquer the world of one small boy in a Beatles haircut.

Lerman soon learns how easily a three-year-old can take that belief and stuff cheese balls in its ear.

With a brain filled with hyperlinks in hyperdrive, Lerman draws parenting lessons from all the wrong places – Mad Magazine, Samsonite commercials, and sixties song lyrics – but comes up with the right answer:  nothing gets you through the sleeplessness, the mania, the tears and fears of parenthood like a good laugh. Especially at your own, neurotic, desperately-striving-to-be-a-good-parent self.

By turns poignant and hilarious, Lerman’s journey from the control room to the playroom (and, ultimately, from obsessing about control to accepting the natural chaos of things)  offers a lesson for the modern age: that somewhere between strict discipline and unconditional love, lies… Dadditude.

And that in the process of losing your mind, you can find your heart.