With all due respect to Mr. Nordstrom, Mr. Weinstock and Mr. Mac, one thing I'm genuinely not looking forward to this Father's Day is adding to my growing gaggle of ties.

Or is it herd?Frankly, I don't care if fuchsia is this year's power color.

I want another tie about as much as Saudi's King Fahd wants a quart of Quaker State.

I'd rather swap the annual cravat in favor of a traditional Father's Day with all the trimmings.

The kind real people like Ozzie and Harriet always had: The afternoon newspaper; the robe; the slippers; the whole schmear.

Alas, life doesn't always imitate "Cosby."

Instead of slippers and paper, Momma and the kiddies are more likely to shove a flat oblong box with a stick-em bow in your gut Sunday morning and utter a lame excuse along the lines of: "We didn't know what else to get you. You're so hard to buy for."

Like you're Armand Hammer or somebody; like you've got a fleet of riding mowers parked in the garage.

Are they getting kickbacks from Ralph Lauren and Calvin Klein, or what?

Everybody knows that nobody ever goes shopping for a necktie.

They're not advertised on the tube every 10 minutes like a Veg-a-matic or Pocket Fisherman.

You can't even buy them on the Home Shopping Network.

Yet they still manage to find their way to your doorstep every dad's day - like the neighbor's tomcat when your little Fluffy is in heat.

Actually, I'm almost convinced scientists will one day find a genetic link between ties and leeches. I've never seen a shirt heading toward the cash register, without a couple of ties trying to attach themselves.

How else in the cosmos can you explain buying a shirt off the $9.99 sale table and then turning around and blowing twice as much on matching designer neckwear. Of course, by then you've completely forgotten you walked into the store looking to buy a pair of pants.

Dads, of course, come factory equipped with a sixth sense when it comes to this Father's Day tie stuff - much like your 12-year-old can sense when you've decided it's time for him to mow the lawn.

The first sniff of polyester and dads start leaving hints all around the house. A Golf Digest gets left on the bathroom hamper; or an L.L. Bean catalog shows up on the nightstand beginning in early May.

And then we're branded slobs for leaving magazines and catalogs strewn across the house.

Moms would never stand for this kind of treatment.

Hell may have no fury like a woman's scorn. But a mother's scorn is reason enough for the FBI to relocate you with a new ID.

Moms, of course, got clued into this special day stuff years ago.

They beat dads by 52 years getting their own day on the calendar.

Moms are organized labor. One gets red roses, pretty soon they all demand them.

Dads are scabs. We take anything they'll give us. Our motto is: A man can't have too many fuchsia ties.

Actually, many of our shortcomings can be blamed on the kinds of examples we've had.

Father Murphy?

Why, the big oaf couldn't stop his television show from being canceled.

Daddy Warbucks?

He let a little runny-nosed moppet run all over him.

Whereas, mothers can look to such shining examples as, say, Ma Barker.

Embarrassing, isn't it.

If it weren't so un-macho, maybe we could just slit our wrists. At least then we could put this year's tie to good use - as a tourniquet.

Things can always be worse, though.

Instead of another tie, they could buy you a Garden Weasel.

I hear they make lousy pets.