Most dads don't want anything expensive for Father's Day - unless your thinking of getting him a new barbecue grill with a beer holder, TV screen and remote control to flip the burgers.

Dads have pretty basic needs. A nice meatloaf and a comfortable pair of slippers work nicely.

Sunday is Father's Day, a day we honor the men who show up occasionally to help Mom raise the kids.

Wait ... that's the way it was in past generations. Today, Dad's role is much different. The traditional roles of mothers and fathers have changed with more sharing of duties - from earning money to doing the laundry.

But tomorrow we honor the fellow who taught us to ride a bike, who bought us our first baseball glove before we were even able to crawl, who spent hours on Christmas Eve putting together the Barbie playhouse that promised "no tools required," who reluctantly loaned us the car keys when we went solo in the family buggy for the first time.

A lot has been written about Dad, but there is one essay that surfaces each year at this time. No one knows the author, but it is worth repeating to show all fathers our appreciation. Here it is:

When I was:

Four years old: My daddy can do anything.

Five years old: My daddy knows a whole lot.

Six years old: My dad is smarter than your dad.

Eight years old: My dad doesn't know exactly everything.

Ten years old: In the olden days, when my dad grew up, things were sure different.

Twelve years old: Oh, well, naturally, Dad doesn't know anything about that. He is too old to remember his childhood.

Fourteen years old: Don't pay any attention to my dad. He is so old-fashioned.

Twenty-one years old: Him? My Lord, he's hopelessly out of date.

Twenty-five years old: Dad knows about it, but then he should, because he has been around so long.

Thirty years old: Maybe we should ask Dad what he thinks. After all, he's had a lot of experience.

Thirty-five years old: I'm not doing a single thing until I talk to Dad.

Forty years old: I wonder how Dad would have handled it. He was so wise.

Fifty years old: I'd give anything if Dad were here now so I could talk this over with him. Too bad I didn't appreciate how smart he was. I could have learned a lot from him.

If you're lucky enough to still have Dad around, give him a big hug Sunday. Better yet, give him a big hug every day. That's the best gift any Dad could receive.

And, a meatloaf would be appreciated.