Other Books by Stuart and Linda Macfarlane
To a Pretty Average Father

Extracts from the book:

Father’s day trivia

  • Father's Day is the ninth most popular card-sending holiday – just slightly less popular than Groundhog Day and Rogation Sunday.  
  • Neckties are top of the list of Father’s Day gifts. Psychiatrist Dr. Isa Mannaitter suggests that this is because of the similarities between the tie and the noose.
  • Modern Father’s Day began in 1910 after UK card publisher Ripoff Press manufactured too many Mother’s Day cards. They overprinted the word “Mother” with “Father” and, voilà!, suddenly dad was special too.


The five worst fathers of all time (allegedly!!)

Marvin Gay, Sr.
Marvin had three children, one being the legendary soul-R&B singer Marvin Gay(e) who’s best known songs include I Heard It Through The Grapevine.

Gay, Sr., was a minister in the House of God, a conservative Christian sect. He was a great lover of vodka and a zealous cross-dresser. Despite his own bizarre behaviour he imposed strict codes of conduct on his children. In fact, throughout Marvin Jr.’s childhood, his father beat him on an almost daily basis.

Marvin Sr. resented his son’s fame but was happy to live off his fortune. The relationship between the two became increasingly turbulent, as Marvin Jr. spiralled deeper into drug-induced depressions. 

During a heated argument, on April Fool's Day, 1984, (the day before Marvin Jr.'s 45th birthday) Marvin Sr. shot his son twice in the chest with a gun his son had bought him. Within hours Marvin Jr. was dead. In prison, Marvin was asked if he loved his son. He replied, "Let's say that I didn't dislike him."

Polar Bears
The truth of the matter is that polar bears are just not cut out for the life of fatherhood and they make no attempt at trying. A male will bugger off immediately after mating (without even giving his phone number) leaving the female to find a council house, claim social security and bring up all the cubs on her own. If that wasn’t bad enough, if he has trouble finding enough seals to duff up and eat he’ll arrive home, giving some lame excuse about having been on a business trip for the past six months and, when mummy isn’t looking, he’ll devour his little darlings. To be fair to the poor lad, he has to live in sub-zero conditions on a diet of seal blubber so you have to feel some sympathy for him!

Titus Andronicus
Shakespeare's character, Titus, may make the excuse that he shouldn’t be on this list as he is a fictitious character. But on the grounds that he typifies cruel Roman Generals he stays – and it’s my list, so there!

A domineering father, he certainly showed his son, Mutius, who was boss. Titus wanted to marry off his daughter, Lavinia, to the son of a friend. But Lavinia had other plans for she was in love. Mutius helped the loving couple elope. In a rage Titus killed him for his troubles.

However, he did have a caring side for when Lavinia was raped and mutilated (her hands were cut off and her tongue cut out to stop her telling who had raped her) Titus killed her so she would not have to endure the shame that, at that time, went with being raped. And, as a cool act of revenge, he made mince pies out of the two rapists and fed them to their parents. Nice touch!


By Stuart McLean Published by Crombie-Jardine
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© 2006, The Secret Diary of The Secret Diary of Adrian Cat