A bit of a different post here. In addition to the wide net of artistic-related concerns this (neglected) blog is concerned with, I have occasionally delved into personal matters such as priorities, family, and work. However, considering there are ~250 posts on this site, “personal” writing is in the extreme minority.
In October of 2021, my good friend Alice Dreger virtually introduced me to the then-outgoing New York Times columnist Paul Sullivan. He had just published his final “Wealth Matters” column, one that outed his other job: that of being the primary caregiver to his three daughters. Or, as he calls it, being a Lead Dad. He announced that he was leaving the NYT to focus on building a community of other Lead Dads in order to both raise awareness of and normalize the role. His column deeply resonated with me, and Paul and I lightly kept in touch as I followed his launching The Company of Dads.
(I should note that Alice, in addition to being my friend and former neighbor, was also the primary caregiver to her son, a role that we’ve continually bonded over through the years, which is why she thought to introduce me to Paul.)
In February he asked to interview me for his podcast, and we got along swimmingly. The episode (#11) is out today. I was very surprised to be asked, considering the guests he’s already featured, but I’m happy to discuss my parenting experience, especially with those in a similar role. We continue to stay in touch, and I’m grateful that we’ve been able to connect.
I don’t know how much of our original talk will be included—we spoke for a while and covered a lot of ground. There’s was a little music talk, but the focus was really on the role of primary parent and Lead Dad*. We discussed parenting and how that’s juggled with family generally, work, music, volunteering, and more. And, I don’t know if this made the cut, but we did touch on our shared childhood love of professional wrestling as well as my renewed interest in it over the last couple years. (Speaking of which, the 30th anniversary of my first live event was just a couple weeks ago, and I’m going to my first live event in decades next week.)
If you’re at all interested in the discussion or the topic generally, give it a listen. I really value what Paul is doing with the Company of Dads, and I look forward to seeing where it goes.
The episode is available via Apple Podcasts, YouTube (where you can sneak my River of Fundament poster in the mirror, and you can also see me hunched over because of awkward mic and camera positioning), and wherever else you may get your podcasts.
I’ve been repping the Company of Dads both from my home office as well as at gigs:
*Admittedly, I do have a little hesitancy around the term because I’ve always just seen myself as “the parent” instead of “the dad,” likely because I was raised by a single mom who essentially fulfilled both roles. But that’s just me and my own experience, and it’s another tale for another time..