Bring Your Daughter to Work Day? Bring it On!

So, it’s upon us once again. “Bring Your Daughter to Work Day” or as I like to call it, “Scared Straight” (“see, you’d better get your marks up, young lady, or this’ll happen to you! Is that what you want? Is it?”). This is a day when we are supposed to show our female offspring the full width and breath of any true career opportunities and help them prepare for their futures by allowing them to cut school. Nothing like a little society-approved class ditching to improve morale, eh?

Obviously, I’m not a big fan of Bring Your Daughter to Work day. I’m sure if I was Marlo Thomas or Susan Sarandon, I’d bring my kid to work in a minute. Some slick, politically-correct work place with lots of day care and some managed company-sponsored program so that my kid wasn’t actually with me for the day. And hey, if I was a kid and I got to produce a news show or publish a magazine for the day, I’ll love to go to. But out here in reality-land, things aren’t so peachy keen.

For instance, why isn’t BYDtWD scheduled during spring break? Wouldn’t it be better if your daughter missed a day of school when there isn’t any? Might it be because you really can’t demonstrate a girl’s full potential at Disney World or the Cayman Islands? Sure, woman’s rights are important, but why should we have to reschedule a vacation around it? Or is it because they don’t want to get their daughters mixed up with those kids that many working mothers are already bringing to the office because they can’t get babysitters for them during school holidays? So, actually there are already lots of daughters at work, but it just isn’t the same without that celebrity endorsement, is it?

Then there’s those kids whose parents work in a job where you can’t bring kids, like firefighters, police, tugboat captains, coal miners, or crossing guards. Gypped out of a day off, they are. And like the boys, left to attend school in a day where nothing will be taught because half the students are off on some self-righteously declared demi-holiday. Of course, my heart always goes out to the poor child whose parent is a school teacher, so they get off from school so they can spend the day AT AN ENTIRELY DIFFERENT SCHOOL. That’ll teach ’em.

Just so you know, I have participated in past BYDtWDs. It’s just that I work at one of those places where they don’t put together some fantastic tour and display. They haven’t got some PR flunky whisking all the young ladies on a whirlwind tour of every aspect of the company and the industry. My daughter gets to sit at an unoccupied desk and watch me shuffle papers. I have her bring her homework to do. That gives her some pencil pushing of her own to do, so she gets the whole “clerk experience.” Which means after about 45 minutes she’ll announce she’s bored and wants to eat. So we know it’s effective.

Of course the highlight of the day for them is lunch. As it is for me. Their choice; McDonald’s or Burger King. Like they’ll really appreciate one of those business restaurants with actual silverware and cloth napkins. And like I can afford it.

Now, the afternoon hours make the morning hours look like Romper Room. My daughter is now tired, bored and sick of doing busy-work. As am I. Sure I can have her sit and learn what it is I do, but I barely grasp it myself (“See all these numbers, honey? Well, I add all of them up and then I add them to this column of numbers. Yes, dear, every day. Every single stinking day.”)

Anyway, as the day approaches this year, my youngest is making noises about going to “daddy’s work.” We’ll see. Things seem to be improving on the job, there are new areas to see and discover; they just opened a Wendy’s nearby.

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