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Happy Father's Day!
To all our couch-sittin', sports-channel-surfin', beer-slurpin' dads
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Chris Robinson, Jonathan Lipscomb and Ashley Bell talk about their plans for Father's Day, and the types of Father's Day cards they receive.

Poor dads.

Every Father’s Day, children deliver well-meaning cards and the stereotypes continue.

There’s a dad holding the remote control, flipping the TV channel from one sporting event to another.

There’s another one, drinking a beer with his belly hanging out while lying in the recliner.

At least, that’s what the thousands of Father’s Day cards all seem to say — they make fun of our dads.

That’s OK with Jonathan Lipscomb, general manager of Shuler’s Great Outdoors in Gainesville and Commerce.

“I fit some of these (stereotypes), and the reason why is because dads work so hard,” he said, laughing.  

But seriously, Lipscomb said, usually on Father’s Day he’s not laying on the couch drinking beer at all — he’s with his family.

“We go to my dad’s and then we go to my father in-law’s and that’s the way it always is,” said Lipscomb, the father of 2-year-old Ella. “Being a young dad you always have to do your parents ... I’m what you call traditional. Usually grill out and hang out with the family.”

Each year, Hallmark estimates Father’s Day ranks fourth for holiday card sending, with Americans dropping 105 million cards in the mail to their dads. Mother’s Day is third with 155 million cards sent, according to hallmark.com. Christmas is No. 1.

But each of those cards to dad usually comes with a funny character on the front grilling hot dogs, or a retro-looking dad swigging a beer.

Ashley Bell, a Gainesville lawyer, said he may fit one of the stereotypes — watching football. Especially if the University of Georgia or Louisiana State are playing.

“It’s part of being a dad, the fact where you know they satirize your role,” said Bell, a father of two children, daughter Lilla, 9 and son Ashley “B.W.” Bell, 1. “I did my dad the same way.”
Bell said he does appreciate the stereotypical dad gift, however.

“I have to say I get good looking ties, so I don’t really mind,” he said. “I have not gotten any animals on my ties or cartoons and I appreciate that. My daughter has been good over the years.”
Bell did say that silly Father’s Day cards are exactly what he looks for when he picks one up for his dad, Bedarius “Pap” Bell.

“He probably will get a silly card like this ... he has boxes of these silly cards. He keeps most of them — I hope he does, anyway,” Bell said.

One way to avoid the beer-swigging-dad stereotype depicted on cards is to do what Sgt. Chris Robinson’s family does — avoid them altogether.

“Mostly my daughter’s hand make their Father’s Day cards, which I enjoy looking at those,” said Robinson of the Gainesville Police Department. He is father of daughters Tatum, 10 and Rebecca, 14.

“They really, throughout the years, have made me some Father’s Day cards that I even keep and save.”
Besides, Robinson added, the cards’ images depicting the dad on the couch wouldn’t happen at his house.

“(I’m) busy, live on a small farm and I have a lot to do,” he said. “I don’t sit around. I wish I could sit around.”

In fact, many dads said if they were sitting around the house on Father’s Day, it would be with their family.
Robinson said he plans to go to the lake and “hopefully we’ll be able to enjoy the day on a beach somewhere.” And Bell said he will be hanging with his parents and brother for Sunday dinner.

“Being a young father, I like to spend time with my dad so we always incorporate that,” Bell said. “Father’s Day is kind of a generational thing; my dad is retiring this year and we will probably spend it with him and barbecue.”

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