Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Fine Fantasy Father Figures

Women of child bearing age and grown men have very different fantasies about fathers.

Based on an unscientific survey of Irish lassies, women are focused on the sex (as in having it) when thinking of who would be the best father to their as of yet unconceived child. That at least is the response of the large percentage of the ladies of the Emerald Isle who chose partyboy/actor Colin Farrel as the man they'd most like to bear with.

Not surprisingly, grown men (artists, anyway) are looking for something different. At the heart of Pat Conroy's new novel, South of Broad, is a fantasy father, an actual good man very different from the cold, abusive, disciplinarian who raised the author. As Conroy told USA Today about his fantasy dad: ""I always needed [a loving father]," Conroy says, "so I created one."

Filmmaker Todd Graff, on the other hand, had a good enough relationship with his own father that he even dedicated his new, Disneyish film, Bandslam, to his recently passed pop — whose coming out as a gay man in his 80s added to the complexity of his relationship to his son and family, although it had nothing to do with Graff choosing David Bowie as the fantasy father figure in his own screenplay. (That fantasy was one near to his own when thinking he'd make his life in music, not on video.)

A rock icon, a nice guy and "the bad boy." Fine fantasy father figures all ... each to his own.

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