Amid all the claims for romantic prowess being peddled by film stars, rock stars and flat-bellied bachelors, the real superheroes of the bedroom go largely unacknowledged.
And so, this Valentine's Day — a day when suburban mommies everywhere will be showered with construction paper hearts, overpriced chocolates and things from Victoria's Secret that we will wear only once, if at all — it is time to extend some long-overdue credit.
The publishing world may not have figured it out yet, but if the truth were told, the best-selling how-to manuals on the shelf would be devoted to the Bedroom Secrets of the Suburban Dad.
Sorry to bust your bubble Casanova, but these guys have earned the title.
You think it's hard to get the attention of a woman in a bar? Puh-leeze.
These guys have to convince a woman who has fallen asleep in her clothes reading Thomas the Tank Engine stories that what she really wants right now is some midnight romance under the giant pile of laundry covering the master bed.
You want to brag about technique? These guys keep the steam building knowing that at any minute — and probably more than once — they will be interrupted by a crying child, a ringing phone or their wives' spontaneous recollection that they forgot to sign a permission slip for the field trip.
We are talking about enticing a woman who, no matter how diligently you work to set the mood, will be filtering your sweet whisperings and best maneuvers through the running commentary of her mental Blackberry: "Oh, that feels ... Is that coughing? I will never make deadline if she's sick. Wait, what is today? Is it the 10th?" And, "Oh. Oh. Oh God, it's the 14th. Mom's birthday. I should send flowers. Better write myself a note. If I could just reach ... a pen."
My point is, these guys have honed their skills under conditions you could not imagine.
You single metrosexuals may have better underwear, but you are amateurs next to them.
Plus, today, they all get a new pair.
That heat coming out of the suburbs — it's not just the BBQ grills.
For more of commentator Pat Dunnigan's musings on suburban culture, visit her blog SuburbanKamikaze.com. Pat lives in the Chicago area.