The day is gross but also great as Evan does his civic duty and brings Rory to the voting booth for the first time. This trip to the polls opens Evan up to a bigger question — one that all modern parents must face: Is this a bad time to have kids?
The world feels like it’s imploding. On episode 16 of “Dude Turned Dad,” Evan explores that feeling. Is it really true? Is this actually a bad time to raise kids with global warming, social media, the rise of racism, fascism, and Donald Trump? Or are we in echo chambers that scare us into thinking the world is truly terrible?
Evan explores that feeling with a celebrity PSA, pretending to be Jeremy Renner. He remembers that famous Noam Chomsky quote, “The world’s on fire, how about yours?” Wait, that was Smash Mouth. But it feels like Smash Mouth was right. The world feels like it’s on fire.
So should you bring kids into this mess. Evan weighs the pros and cons. He’s a white man in a developed country with a good job and a good support system. Still, he’s bringing Rory into an era of division, conspiracy, and extreme weather. There’s a chance that climate change will create a worldwide famine in Rory’s lifetime.
But we learn about the future boy returning to the past. Evan examines how his grandfathers lived, what they had to get through in order for him to be talking into the camera today: World War II, the Great Depression. His grandfathers both had as many kids as they could. They made the best of the world they were given, which is all any of us can do.
So is the world on fire? Maybe. But Evan tries to inspire. He reads from one of his favorite poems, Maggie Smith’s Good Bones. “I am trying to sell them the world. Any decent realtor, walking you through a real shithole, chirps on about good bones: This place could be beautiful, right? You could make this place beautiful.” Evan is trying to sell his son the world.
You could make this place beautiful.