Poppa Perkins


Mark Perkins

Poppa Perkins visits the park


I’ve always wanted a daughter, long before I knew anything about them.
I admit revealing this just continues to solidify why I’m not considered a normal person. High school students’ standard answer to the question of children is, “
I’ll never have children because I want to focus on me;” but if I focus on myself, I’ll die from boredom (or diabetes if I continue my current trend of shoving ice-cream and chocolate pies in my chubby cheeks). I just think the world would be so much more unhinged and eccentric if there was a little baby thing running around with my face calling me “Poppa.” I’m not asking for too much either, no need to pull a Genghis Khan and father the world or be one of those cult dads that live in the woods with his 23 wives and 48 children. I just want one little daughter. This may be the most cringe-inducing of my confessions–that my biggest dream is to have a daughter, but if I am ever able to become Big Poppa Perkins, I’d make sure to do it correctly. Mark my words, Mark Perkins’ daughter will be groomed to perfection! She may not be the prettiest, she may not be the most intelligent, she may not have all of her teeth, but make no mistake she will be prepared. She will be prepared to face the horrid world of the skin-killing sun, the slug-brained populace, and the toils of beautification.

The pregnancy is where you start dadding. During the pregnancy, I will proceed to take on what is known as a Dad Bod. I shall be as gigantic as my pregnant lady, my receding hairline (that I’ve been trying to catch since my middle school years) will be so far back on my head that historians would study its origins, and gravity will pull all of my protruding excess skin downwards until I looked like saggy swamp creature.

While my mother was pregnant with me, she laid headphones on her stomach and played classical piano music to sedate me. I would take that philosophy one step forward; I would transcribe Shakespeare’s greatest texts on my lady’s belly to ensure the child was well-versed in literature, I would glue pictures of famous works of art to the belly to give my daughter a keen eye, I’d slather the best food from across the world on the belly to give the child an exquisite taste for culture, and I’d viciously play bongos so my sweet child could dance and have rhythm, unlike her tone-deaf father.

I wouldn’t want her to call me daddy, it’s not dignified. I would need a referred-to term that represented daddyness in a less juvenile and degrading sense. Don’t you worry slightly concerned reader, I’d allow my delicate daughter to have choices of what she would like to call me, and they would be: Mr. Dad, Poppa Perkins, Gran Papá (in Spanish), Lord, and Mark. I would, of course, have cute and reflective names for my stupendous daughter, those being: Sweet Baby Munchkin, Bobobaby, Sugar Bunion,  Little Cake Potato, and Daughter of Mark Perkins.

You know those hardcore dads, with a beautiful daughter, who threaten boys with physical violence if they come near their daughter? Well, I’m the opposite of intimidating and I’m way too out of shape to do anything physical. That’s why I hope to have a baby with a hideous and disgusting face. If my wonderful daughter had a face like a turkey-monster, I wouldn’t need to scare away boys because her face alone would do the job. Along with my face, she would inherit my hair and great skin. My hair is so thick, wooly, and nappy that I’m sure my daughter would just settle to be a bald princess. If that were to come to fruition, I’m sure we could find some stray hair or lint laying around the house to create a wonderful wig (or I could just get her an orange toupee). As for my skin, she’ll be all set! I have skin that makes Cleopatra jealous; well that was until I ruined it with all that harmful sun. But I would make sure to preserve the beauty of my daughter’s skin. She’d wear sunscreen in the house, bathe in a tub of lotion, and never be exposed to sunlight.

I’m not a violent person; I’m a delicate little ladybug. I assume that is why Grandma Perkins advised me to carry a brick in my backpack, in the case that I would ever be attacked; she knew that I had no hope when it came to fighting fair. My cub would have no need for such barbaric techniques, for I would teach her the art of blowing a whistle and running away. She wouldn’t inherit much leg or lung strength from her old man, but by the time her attackers catch up to her (if I haven’t heard the whistle by then), I’m sure they would have succumbed to her charm and let her go.

My daughter would also be a safe driver. I’m not too trusting of people who drive cars and I wouldn’t dare allow my precious to be ill-equipped on a road filled with moving death boxes. She would get a helicopter for her 16th birthday. That way she wouldn’t need to burden herself with the trials and tribulations of driving down here with road demons.

I’d attend all of her pathetic little games and shout her on while simultaneously crying. I’d convince her I was Santa Claus, so she would have something cool to say about her dad at school (as she unequivocally proves why her dad is the best and most daddiest dad there is). We would both thicken up at Thanksgiving, so neither one of us would feel bad about being overweight.

Towards the end, I’d make sure to put her in a retirement home before she had the chance to put me in one. I know that sounds scary, but it’s the right decision. I’m the father, which means I should be responsible for putting her in places she doesn’t want to be in–not vice versa.

Even with this fatherhood fantasy, a question still lingers in my deserted cranium. Why do I want to be a father? Besides the benefits of having a pair of legs that I could command to go fetch things and having another thing with my face, what would be in it for me? Whether the answer is selfish or altruistic, I can only guess. Perhaps it’s because my father didn’t play a significant role in my life. Perhaps it’s because of my egocentric wish to make more of myself to take over the world. Perhaps it’s because I’m aware the worthwhile parts of my life are coming to a close, so I just naturally wish to shift focus to another creature. All I know is I want a Baby From The Perkins Lagoon; I want one in the same way a big boy wants chocolate. So wish this future dad good luck (don’t worry if I don’t find a Mrs, I can always adopt—they’re selling kids cheap these days).