My younger brother, Paul, is the definition of a funcle. What is a “funcle,” you ask? A funcle is the “fun uncle.” So, when it came to Paul’s birthday this year, Anna and I decided to buy him something worthy of his title. We bought him his own funcle t-shirt. Paul is the uncle that all the nieces and nephews are excited to see, and they’re all sad when he leaves. Here are few things that Paul does that puts him in the funcle category.
Funcles offer to babysit
This past week, my parents invited my older brothers’ kids from Chicago over for the week. It’s something my parents try to do at least once a year and a way that my parents can spend quality time with the grandkids and not cram it all into a weekend visit. While spending time with Nana and Pops is fun, it pales in comparison to when the funcle comes over. My niece and nephew loooove uncle Paul, so when my parents had a prior event to attend one night last week, uncle Paul offered to babysit. Jackpot.
After work, Paul picked them up from my parents’ house, brought them over to his house, and was going to make chicken fajitas for them. Well, it turns out that they don’t like chicken. This might have been a problem for a normal uncle, but for a funcle it was not an issue at all. He had a backup plan of hamburgers for dinner. While the burgers were grilling, Paul played kickball with them in the backyard and chatted with them about their week.
Funcles take an interest
Last weekend, Anna and I finally got our jet ski out on the water after 4 years of storage and problems on the water. My parents watched Jude and Adelaide while we went out for a couple of hours. What we didn’t know was that Uncle Paul showed up at my parents’ house after we left.
When Anna and I got back to pick up the kids, we were informed that Jude, Adelaide, and Uncle Paul went jet skiing, too. Curious, we asked Jude who drove the jet ski and of course, are there any pictures. Nana promptly got her phone out and showed us a picture of all three “jet skiing.”
Funcles gain respect
There are many times a day when I will ask Jude to do something, repeatedly. Wash your hands. Go inside. Put your shoes on. And my personal favorite, come here! While these requests are usually shot down due to selective hearing on Jude’s part, he miraculously gains hearing when Uncle Paul is present. It seems like Paul can get his nieces and nephews to follow his commands 9 out of 10 times. The only time they won’t listen to him is when they are near the meltdown stage and beyond tired.
While Uncle Paul is fun, I also think that they tend to listen more to him than us because he is a critical part of their lives; they respect and love him — and he says no a lot less than we do.
Funcles attend important events
Be it baptisms, birthday parties, or First Holy Communions, Uncle Paul is always in attendance. He makes the 5 hour trip to Chicago or the five minute drive over to our house to support his nieces and nephews in their important events.
You never outgrow a funcle
From the day his nieces and nephews were born until now, Uncle Paul has been there for them. Whether it’s holding them as newborns or mowing with them on a beautiful summer afternoon, Paul has made it a point to grow with his nieces and nephews. I’m sure his relationship with them will only strengthen over time.
Ladies, the funcle is single
I’d be remiss not to mention that he is currently single at the time of this writing. While he is a great catch, you will have to get past the nieces and nephews and see if you are fit to be a faunt (the fun aunt). The nieces and nephews don’t want you messing up a good thing for them, wink, wink.
Do you have a funcle in your life? Are you the funcle? If so, I’d love to hear your story in the comments below.