NOW WITH GEEK PHILOSOPHY!

I have changed the tagline of the DAN a.k.a. DAD website. Previously it read, “Adventures In Midlife Fatherhood w/ Jean Louise.” Not to take anything away from my awesome kid, it now reads, “Adventures In Midlife Fatherhood With Geek Philosophy.” Why the change?

As I mentioned in my previous post last week (INCREASING MY DAD LEVEL TO 2.0), I attended the Dad 2.0 Summit — “an annual conference where marketers, social media leaders, and blogging parents connect to discuss the changing voice and perception of modern fatherhood.” I learned a lot from the speakers, presenters, and other dads in attendance in regards to how better define my “dad blog” presence. I was also enlightened to a lot more in regards to fatherhood and parenthood in general, which I will expand upon in later posts. The entire Dad 2.0 Summit was a great experience overall and I look forward to attending again.

But, back to the “Now With Geek Philosophy!” There are a lot of dad blogs out there, and many of them are of the “I’m an old dad” variety. In my conversations with presenters and other dads it became apparent that I had a definite “geek” influence with my outlook on life and my choice on how to raise my kid(s). I’m the dad that has to be sure to put a ribbon barrette in my daughter’s hair so that she’s not confused for a boy because I dress her in Star Wars and superhero t-shirts. I’m the dad that is launching a new podcast called DAD DND that features a group of fathers playing Dungeons & Dragons. I already have a Star Trek and Star Wars podcast called Starmageddon in which I often discuss how I’m subjecting my child to both sci-fi franchises.

To quote Aristotle… “Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.” (See what I did there? I threw in an actual Greek Philosopher.) Now, good ol’ Aristotle probably was speaking along the lines of empathy and compassion for one’s fellow man when he spoke of educating the heart, and not a passion for space operas and spandex clad vigilantes. But passion is passion. And, a vast majority of my favorite science-fiction and fantasy properties promote empathy and compassion — as well as ethics, morality, justice, integrity, and virtue in addition art, lore, and science. Not to mention that geek culture is just fun, dammit!

I have yet to read any of the Harry Potter novels or watch any of the Harry Potter movies. Not because I didn’t want to. It’s because I was waiting until I had a child of my own to enjoy them with. Now, Jean Louise — being only 13 months old — is still to young for Harry Potter, but come five or six years when we crack open Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone to read at bedtime… I can’t wait.

You see… Like most fathers, I’ve already got this vision of my daughter in the future — an astronaut. I don’t know why. I just do. It may be how she tends to look out through the window and up toward the sky when I change her diaper. Or, it may be that she looks like she’s sitting in a cockpit of a space shuttle whenever I strap her into her highchair. Now, she may very likely (and probably) not grow up to be an astronaut. And that’s okay. However, she will grow up believing that she will live long and prosper, that with great power comes great responsibility, and that the Force is with her.

INCREASING MY DAD LEVEL TO 2.0

No, the title of this post is not a tease that we are expecting our second child. (Sorry, grandmas.)

This week I will be partaking in the Dad 2.0 Summit in San Diego. While this year marks the sixth year for the annual conference, this will be my first year attending. A “rookie dad,” so to speak. Which is fitting since I consider myself very much a rookie, regardless of my age. In the “dad game” I’m sort of like one of those middle-aged pitchers that spent their entire baseball career in the minors before finally being called up to “the show.”

For the last decade and a half, when I’ve traveled the eighty or so miles South down Interstate 5 it has been for Comic-Con International to either hawk comics that I’ve created or try to land gigs to write comics for other publishers. This time around, I’m heading down with the hopes of not only learning how I can make this DAN a.k.a. DAD a better dad blog, but maybe pick up a few pointers on being an even better dad.

So, what is the Dad 2.0 Summit? Well, according to the official website it…

“…is an open conversation about the commercial power of dads online, and an opportunity to learn the tools and tactics used by influential bloggers to create high-quality content, build personal brands, and develop business ideas.”

Modern fatherhood is a lot different than it was way back when my own dad was a dad. Nowadays more men are taking a more active role in the day-to-day rearing of their children. Today’s dad now has their finger on the pulse of products and services are available in regards to raising their kids. And, many of today’s dads are using these same fingers to type up “dad blogs” — like yours truly.

About a year and a half ago I was invited by a friend on Facebook to join the Dad Bloggers Group. (Thanks, Joel.) He had read my posts about being an expectant father and figured that I might have a knack, or at least an aspiration, for dad blogging. And, since I joined a group of dad bloggers I had to come up with a dad blog — and now you’re reading DAN a.k.a. DAD. Since joining the group I’ve made a lot of new friends — who coincidentally, also happen to be dads that blog. (Well, most of them still blog.) I’m looking forward to meeting many of them face-to-face for the first time during the summit.  And, I hope to learn a few of their tricks of the dad blogging trade as well.

Let’s be honest, folks. As much as I just like sharing my thought about being a dad and bragging about my awesome kid, I wouldn’t mind increasing the readership of the DAN a.k.a. DAD blog, mastering how to create engaging content, and maybe gaining a few sponsors to earn a little scratch for the kid’s college fund.

And, as an added bonus… It appears my daughter’s eyeteeth are just beginning to come in. So, I’ll be spared a few days of tot teething terror while I’m away. Sorry, honey.

I plan on documenting my experience while at the summit via Instagram and Twitter. So, if you’re interested in live coverage of the event you might want to make sure you’re following the DAN a.k.a. DAD Twitter (@danakadad) account and Instagram (danakadad) account. (Not to be confused with my regular Twitter (@danltaylor) and Instagram (geekpunkdan) accounts. But, feel free to follow those too.) And while you’re add it, how about showing a little more love to DAN a.k.a. DAD by liking the Facebook page? Also, feel free to share DAN a.k.a. DAD with others. Any and all support is appreciated. Thanks.