My bastards are annoying––always begging for food, tuition, more affection––and I’ll admit, sometimes it gets me down. Usually, I keep this struggle private: I mutter about my bastards to myself in my gold-inlaid sauna, which only my pedicurist and I have access to. But today, I’m going public with my story. 

In the past, I could flit from bastard to bastard with the ease and grace of a carpet moth. Now, however, it is both possible and socially acceptable to track a loved one’s iPhone from afar—a devastating blow to prolific fathers like myself. Believe me, if Ghengis Khan lived in our time, his conquest of the Mongolian Peninsula would be curtailed by the sinister green dots of his many sons’ Find My iPhone icons. 

With the advent of these stupid location trackers, it’s harder than ever to jet your bastards’ mother away to St. Tropez or go to yet another “environmental finance summit” in Atlantic City. They will find you, and they will want your cash and your presence at their middle school production of A Midsummer’s Night Dream

In order to hide, I’ve had to buy a fourth phone for myself, a second phone for my pedicurist, and even a phone for my phone. I’ve bought so many phones that my local Apple Store has designated me as a “Frequent Flyer,” which doesn’t make sense but earns me enough Miles that I can’t complain. To preserve my relationships with dozens of equally dear bastards (and my honest reputation), I have had to purchase disguises, dye my hair, buy a fake passport, and remember seven different bank PIN numbers. I had to have facial reconstruction surgery because one of the bastards’ mother’s kept holding up one of my phones to my face to see if I could open it with Face ID. 

I am not trying to victimize myself. The system is trying to victimize me. I am strong; I am a tiger. I am a millionaire with a penis, and I used it to create bastards. I sure as hell don’t let them get me down.

—A. Golden