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Dad loves history, monuments, and museums. As one of nature's cruelest twists, historically, children have not been big fans.

When I was a kid, my dad loved taking me to the Wright-Patterson Air Force Museum. He was completely indifferent to our moans and complaints, but in fact he may have been provoked by them, as his father often is. It's not that he didn't care that we didn't like it. Now that I'm a father, I understand that he will be able to see the ambiguity as a challenge and convince us of how fascinating it really is.

– – – – – –

My family just returned from a trip to Washington DC to eat the White House Easter Egg Rolls. The last time I was in Washington DC was 30 years ago. I she was 10 years old. Coincidentally, my son is now 10 years old (my daughter is 12 years old). So while we were sightseeing, I was always comparing it to how it was when my dad took me there in 1993.

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Our plane left Cincinnati at 6:30am. We left home at 3am because my dad loves to arrive super early to catch his flight. Dad loves to avoid the rush, and Dad prefers early morning flights when the airport is less crowded. And so on, some clichés are true.

One of the first things we did was walk by the White House. D.C. was eerily deserted on Saturday morning, but as I was walking north of the White House, a Secret Service SUV suddenly stopped and rolled down its window. “Hey!” Ah… “Dad!” Hmm, ahhh.

Let me stop for a second and say that my kids don't think I'm cool. Partly because no child thinks their parents are cool, but the main reason is because I'm definitely not 100% cool. Their assessment is spot on.But this was as if I had scripted a scene like tried To make them believe I'm cool.

An impressive secret agent got out of his car and shook my hand. He said, “I meet a lot of celebrities, but usually they just don't stop. But what about your dad? I love your stuff.'' (As a contractual obligation, our content is created by a team of talented creators. I assured him that I'm basically a boring businessman at this point.

He took the police dog out of his car and let the children pet it, even though it is a highly trained fighting dog.

RITSHI FOR PREZ
RITSHI FOR PREZ

My son said his goal is to play against Joe Biden in basketball. The guy said, “Well, I don't know how athletic he is.” (He leans closer and lowers his voice.) “Well, actually, I think so, but I'm not allowed to say it.”

As he returned to patrol, I gave the kids a pointed look that asked, “Do you think I'm cool now?”

They glanced back and said clearly: But the dog was cool. ” Nevertheless, I am very grateful to the guy who stopped and raised my cool score from -1 to maybe 0.

Did something similar happen on my last trip to Washington DC in 1993? No, because my dad's meme game was trash because memes didn't exist yet.

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The rest of the day was typical Washington DC tourist attractions. Play the montage background music in your head while looking at the photos. (The Star-Spangled Banner is a timeless choice, but I'll also accept My Country 'Tis of Thee.)

♫ Sweet country of freedom ♫
♫ Sweet country of freedom ♫

Cliché, right? I also took a photo of them pretending to lean on the Washington Monument.

nailed it! Hahaha, that's a dad joke.
nailed it! Hahaha, that's a dad joke.

– – – – – –

Did I value DC more as a father than as a 10 year old child? It's indescribable. I stood in front of the Lincoln Memorial and realized that this is where Martin Luther King Jr. gave his “I Have a Dream” speech. I imagined a large crowd of people. So much happened here.

I went to Ford's Theater The place where Abraham Lincoln was shot. I tried to imagine what would happen. What if John Wilkes Booth didn't do that? What do you do if your gun jams?

Life is tenuous. Every moment that happened, good or bad, celebratory or tragic, connected us to the present and made our reality what it is. Historic sites, monuments, museums…they are records of the most important moments that got us here. They are an inspiration to live a better life and make our children's reality richer and more fulfilling.

I looked at the children. Did they understand the enormity? Did they understand history? My daughter said something very profound. (This is an exact quote. I wrote it down on my phone so I could understand it accurately.) She said: We've been up since 3 a.m. doing your shitty work. ”

I think she understands that.

I've been up since 3 a.m. doing my
I've been up since 3 a.m. doing my “mic lap.”

– – – – – –

I walked over 60,000 steps in 2.5 days. When we stopped, I said, “I have to rest Oregum.” (Gum is a funny word for leg.) This became our running joke. Because what is a family vacation if not a series of inside jokes that you can look back on later? Therefore, the theme of this trip was not historical reflection as I had intended, but rather a “gaming break.” On our last day in Washington, D.C., as we passed through White House security for the Easter Egg Roll, my son asked a Secret Service agent, “Is this a gum rest area?”

Taking a break from the game on the steps of the U.S. Capitol
Taking a break from the game on the steps of the U.S. Capitol

In 1993, we toured the inside of the White House. I couldn't do that on this trip. The best I could offer was the south lawn. Walking around the grounds is a great experience. We saw the President, the First Lady, the Easter Bunny, and Jimmy Fallon.

Regardless of how you feel about his politics, it's pretty cool to be this close to the Easter Bunny
Regardless of how you feel about his politics, it's pretty cool to be this close to the Easter Bunny

My son yelled at the dancing duck, “It's going to hit the iron plate!” What's the 1993 equivalent: “Let's do the Macarena!”? Ladies and gentlemen, hitting the iron plate is just the modern version of the Macarena. Ruined the iron bars. you're welcome.

@thedad

An attempt was made @thejoelwillis #hitthegriddy

♬ Original song – Goodbye

A guy from the VIP section spotted a friend near us and came over to shake our hands. His son said, “Hey, can I buy one too?” (Handshake). The man shook his son's hand and said: I'm a hunter. ”

son's new buddy hunter
son's new buddy hunter

Lovers of true parenting media brands will appreciate this. Scary got to spend time with her mommy Michaela Birmingham and Alison with her Bucaro.

dad and scary mom
Several scary moms and one of the dads

What do my children like? Pop-up concert by Sofia Carson. In true father fashion, I didn't know who her daughter was until she told me she was Evie from Descendents (despite her 16.3 million IG followers). Oh, that's right! Chill out like a villain! historic.

@thedad

We were at the White House yesterday for the Easter Egg Roll. @JoelWillis' son took a selfie with @SofiaCarson and his reaction (and photo) is to die for 🤣

♬ Original song – Goodbye

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I tried to exaggerate it for comedic effect. My kids appreciated history more than most. This is definitely an increase compared to 1993.

As parents, we have to remind ourselves. The point of doing historical tourism with children is not to spark epiphanies about history or children's unique place in the world. The important thing is to create memories with your children that you can look back on and be grateful for when they are older.

– – – – – –

After I became a father, when my children were small, we invited their father to go with us to the Wright-Patterson Air Force Museum. I haven't been there since I was a kid. Yeah, you know what? It was really interesting even from an adult's perspective. In the end, my father won the challenge.

My kids added humor to us and were as interested as kids can get. But they needed to spend time with Grandpa. That's how it's always been.

He passed away a few weeks later and that was one of the last times we saw him. I will be forever grateful that I finally went to a museum.

History isn't just boring museums, statues, and long arcane plaques. History is personal. Family, memories, shared experiences, inside jokes. Some are fascinating, others boring. Some are heroic, some are tragic. That is what life is made of.

Wright-Patterson Air Force Museum, March 12, 2016
Wright-Patterson Air Force Museum, March 12, 2016





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