Table Talk

Tuesday 29 July 2014

Is a six pack of beer and a bottle of whiskey the right way to promote Father's Day?

Patricia Murphy

Published 11/06/2014|14:22

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Drunk businessman clutching whiskey bottle asleep
Do dad's really want to mark the family day by opening up a bottle of spirits?

Taking a trot through any Irish supermarket, one would be hard pressed to forget that Father’s Day is incoming.

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Photos of model daddies flipping juicy steaks on their sparkling grills, close shaving with their new-fangled razors or kicking soccer balls around with the kids are littered throughout the shops in an effort to make us realise how much we really love our pops.

Prices are slashed on ingredients to make that perfect burger during Sunday’s Father’s Day BBQ or a cheap chicken if you feel inclined to host a smoking hot roast for Dad.

All of these presents and gestures seem like desirable gifts to present to the big man but anyone flicking through supermarket brochures ahead of this weekend’s celebration will be overwhelmed with amount of discounted booze being pushed upon consumers.

Peeking down the booze aisles this week, children looking to nab bottles of whiskey or serve up tumblers of scotch to their dads will catch a great deal with as much as a fiver slashed off a wide selection of brands. 

Ice-cold 8 packs of beer are on offer and ready to be gift wrapped and if your dad is partial to the odd glass of vino, you needn’t worry. Bottles upon discounted bottles of wine are ready to be picked up for the occasion.

It seems as though supermarkets believe they have Irish dads sussed out. After all, what could be more meaningful than a boozey day sponsored by the kids?

I am very doubtful that many Irish dads want to slam down a Sunday old-fashioned in an effort to reminisce on the years of fatherhood gone by.

Marketing alcohol in this way is irresponsible and linking booze to a holiday that is designed to signify love and respect is confusing for children.

In one sense, they are discouraged to purchase alcohol underage and warned of its effects, but on the other advertising of this nature is encouraging the idea that maybe a bottle of whiskey is a present a significant adult in their lives might relish.

Four pages of a 12 page ‘Treat your Dad’ booklet picked up in a local supermarket today was dedicated to pushing discounted alcohol and this doesn’t sit so well with me.

As much as I love a beer myself and of course can identify with the fact that many others do as well, I feel like the focus on alcohol diminishes the occasion and modelling the desires of Irish dads on Homer Simpson is insulting.

After asking a few Irish daddies what gift they would like most this Sunday, I was unsurprised that none of them mentioned a margarita or a dewy long neck. Instead, they reckoned a nice brekkie, a deserved lie-in and some fun out the back with the kids would do just the trick and keep them happy until next year’s booze hounding.

I’ll be leaving the scotch on the shelf this Father’s Day. Why waste it staring into the bottom of a glass?

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