The Other F Word

Not fuck but family. More specifically, father. Are they mutually exclusive concepts? What if you’re a fan of both?

What happens when your ethics implore you to fight the system… but then you become a part of the system you so deplore? How do you ‘fuck the authority’ when you are the authority?

The Other F Word is a movie that follows a group of veteran punk rockers as they adapt to the challenges of fatherhood. How do these muso-dads integrate a lifestyle immersed in the punk ethos of ‘fuck you – fuck the world – I do what I want’ with raising children? It’s a poignant irony that director Andrea Blaugrund Nevins tenders with equal amounts of humour, sensitivity and intelligence, and a great dollop of ‘keepin’ it real’.

As the mom of two girls and an agent of pink hair, tats, piercings, the occasional swear word and ‘dodgy as hell’ music; I really loved watching the movie’s muso-dads grappling with the same issues that have fought their way into my consciousness over the last couple of years. Where will I draw the line for my children? How do I teach them to embrace individualism (as much as the word is possible and relevant as a member of society – a greater whole) and critical thought in a responsible way – and is this even possible? Possible perhaps… but never easy.

A million questions to which there are no definite answers.

I often consider that by replacing what society perceives to be ‘the norm’ with the dictates of ‘the alternative’, I have created a ‘new normal’ for my children. In their world; piercings, tats, metal – the whole shebang – will be usual as opposed to unusual. And according to the code of man’s innate desire to rebel, my girls will merely accept society’s norm in favour of the ‘alternative norm’ they have grown up with.

I can’t wait to find out.

The Other F Word reminded me of how much I love being a mom; how important my family is to me. I can’t wait to teach my girls about what I know; what life has taught me – the lessons I have learnt. I expect them to take their life experiences and influences, and fashion them into their own respective paradigms for living. I’ll be there for them all the way – through the good and bad. And I’ll watch with pride as they grow into the beautiful women I know they are going to be.

It’s one thing to be an individual; but it’s another thing to be an individual at the cost of the people around you. – Jack Grisham, TSOL

Maybe that’s how we change the world; instead of by writing a punk-rock song, we just… be better parents. – Jim Lindberg, Pennywise

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