Granted I may be speaking to a subcultural elite here, but being a punk rock parent is possibly harder than it looks. Once all of the gelatin peels away from your Mohawk, and your bondage pants become too tight and cumbersome, it is time to grow up (well, sort of) and face the future you had previously given the finger to. If the number of Ramones and Black Flag onesies are any indication of the unflagging punk rock spirit, there are a lot of parents out there from that pivotal 1977 to 1992 punk rock generation that are trying to mature with some grace, and pass along some of the modified nihilism to their own children that punk wrought.
Nowhere is this more evident than in the new documentary (currently in limited release) The Other F Word, which explores the stories of a dozen or so fathers sharing a certain punk rock pedigree, along with parenting duties. What could have been the premise for a smart, hip sit-com, maybe titled something like “F@#* Authority, It is Still Bedtime,” but instead we have a funny, and sometimes poignantly touching, documentary profiling a certain generation’s struggle to live in accordance to their beliefs while effectively parenting. This is easier than it sounds, considering many of these fathers (sadly, no punk rock mothers are profiled, but maybe that is being held for the sequel) spent much of their life living out of step with the world and gleefully fighting notions of authority and conformity. Now, being authority figures, how do they leverage such responsibilities against their guiding principles of rebellion and anarchy?