This issue is dedicated to the boys. Just typing that makes me think of the 80s song by Deniece Williams, “Let’s Hear it for the Boys.” I love that song and it truly is apropos for how I feel about the role of all fellas in our lives. There’s something to be said about the male perspective. I love trying to anticipate what men are going to say and do in every situation. It’s a fun little game of mine. It’s interesting to see the differences. You know what I’m talking about. I’ve been a bit nostalgic lately. As my kids get older, for some reason it has me thinking about when I was a kid with my younger brothers. We grew up in the Detroit area where Coney islands are iconic institutions. Recently, through the Michigan in Motion show I co-host with Taylor Kelsaw on the MichiganBusinessNetwork.com, we interviewed the owner of American Coney Island who sells Coney Kits that can be sent through the mail. Seriously? I had to do it. My brothers received at their doors a bit of our childhood. So, I’m sure my brothers will think I’m crazy, but they will voice it with chili-onion breath. Oh yeah, just like I remember. And, because I simply love the idea of someone receiving a piece of his past, I sent the Coney Kit to my dad and my grandpa. Both can appreciate a good Coney and spent a great deal of their lives in the Coney Capitol of the World — Detroit. It wasn’t really supposed to be a Father’s Day gift, but I bet I get real points for this from all those wonderful dads. What about my husband, you say? Well, he didn’t grow up in Detroit so I’ll have to come up with something different for him, although, he is a man and can certainly appreciate a chilidog with onions and mustard. I don’t know about you, but it does take a little longer these days to figure out what to get the men for Father’s Day. For Mother’s Day, I instituted an “acts of service” situation. My boys didn’t need to buy me anything. However, there are a few chores around my house and office that could use a solid commitment. I think this makes a ton of sense. In fact, I think my dad and grandpa prefer the gift of time. They have said for years that all they want from me is time together. I’m not sure if they’ve figured it out yet, but it’s more a gift for me than them. They are amazing and I love hanging out and talking. I adore my husband and I’m convinced my husband loves me. Otherwise, why would he agree to do one home improvement project after another? They are so tedious and expensive. After the kitchen debacle of 2009, I figured that we would live the rest of our days with hinges coming unscrewed and someone’s interior design sins going unrectified. But, here we are. We’ve entered into a smaller family room project. Yep, he either loves me or like women forget the pain of childbirth, he forgets the immense torture of home improvement after it’s over. If you run into him, don’t remind him of this. We have a basement to finish this summer. I wonder if Phil Denny does home improvement projects … It looks like he loves to hang out with his boys. Maybe he’s teaching them how to build and make things. I’m sure he’s hopeful that they will appreciate music. But, even if they are not fans of jazz, I’m sure dad finds a way to impress. And, I’m betting the feeling is mutual. Relationships between fathers and sons are so special. This story about Phil and his relationship with his sons is so sweet. I hope you enjoy it. Take the time this June to hang out with a guy who means something to you. It doesn’t matter if he’s 8 or 80. Appreciate what value that male specimen brings to your life. We often get so wrapped up in our day-to-day lives, that we don’t spend the quality time we should. I’m working on making it a bigger priority in my life too. Let’s hear it for the boys. Hey why not? Let’s give the boys a hand. Happy Father’s Day!
Tiffany Dowling is the Founder and President of M3 Group, a full-service branding agency located in downtown Lansing, Mich. She is also owner and publisher of Capital Area Women’s LifeStyle Magazine and the Greater Lansing Business Monthly. Dowling has helped businesses and organizations with branding needs for more than a decade. Learn more at www.m3group.biz.