The only bean dad any of us should be required to recognize is Jay Bush, of Bush’s Baked Beans, a man who is not technically the father of Duke, but a loving father figure nonetheless.
Over the weekend, podcaster and musician John Roderick became 2021’s first Twitter villain after he posted a series of tweets shaming his 9-year-old daughter’s attempt to open a can of beans on her own. That turned into some old problematic tweets resurfacing, a deleted Twitter account, and John’s podcast co-host Ken Jennings getting dragged into it.
This all started on Sunday, when John Roderick tweeted an allegedly real story about his hungry 9-year-old daughter, who asked him to open a can of beans for her. John says he was working on a jigsaw puzzle at the time and decided to offer his child a teachable moment. A lesson I assume he pulled from a child development book written by Satan. According to The Wrap, John claims, in a series of 23 tweets, that he told his daughter she couldn’t have anything to eat until she figured out how to use a can opener. And it took his daughter six hours to figure out how to use one, during which time she both broke down in tears and exclaimed that she hated him. John didn’t seem to mind any of this:
“I said, ‘The little device is designed to do one thing: open cans. Study the parts, study the can, figure out what the can-opener inventor was thinking when they tried to solve this problem,” Roderick wrote. “I went back to my jigsaw puzzle. She was next to me grunting and groaning trying to get the thing. I should say that spatial orientation, process visualization and order of operation are not things she…intuits. I knew this would be a challenge. But it was a rainy weekend.”
“Eventually she collapsed in a frustrated heap. She said, ‘I hate you.’ I’m sure she believes that she does. I said, ‘You understand everything except how the tool addresses the can,'” he wrote. “She was fixated on orienting the tool in a few configurations and couldn’t imagine other possibilities. I compared the can opener to other tools. By now we were working on anger-management and perseverance too. She suggested she open the can with a hammer. There were tears.”
That’s when “Bean Dad” started trending. Most of the Twitter response to John “Bean Dad” Roderick was that his approach was pretty fucked up and manipulative and that all he did was teach his daughter that some adults get a major ego boost from playing mind games with children. The podcast My Brother, My Brother, & Me announced they would no longer be using their theme song, which was written by John Roderick.
Things you taught your kid:
– food must be earned
– disordered eating in the forms of food hoarding and punishing herself by not eating
– asking for help is futile
I’m not done yet….
— Racheline Maltese (@racheline_m) January 3, 2021
Ironically, my 9 y/o asked a similar question the other day with regards to a can of corn. You know what I did? I showed her how to use the can opener.
She's 9, you dipshit. You need to teach her how to be functioning adult, not a self absorbed asshat https://t.co/AU8Vhu0Q7H
— Adam Kapusin (@akapusin3) January 3, 2021
He sounds like the sort of dad who likes beating his kids at games, making them cry, says it's to "toughen them up" when really he's just an obnoxious git who uses his kids to make himself feel big
— Gail (@Hennyhennies) January 3, 2021
We appreciate John letting us use one of his songs as the theme for MBMBaM for nearly a decade, but his response to today’s situation is emblematic of a pattern of behavior that is antithetical to the energy we try to bring to the things we do, and so it’s time for us to move on.
— MBMBaM (@MBMBaM) January 3, 2021
I’m sure Joan Crawford would have happily jumped to defend Bean Dad’s parenting approach, but she’s dead and not on Twitter. Lucky for Bean Dad, he’s got a famous friend named Ken Jennings who was happy to lend some support. The Jeopardy! champ and possible successor to Alex Trebek’s job, first tweeted a joke about all the attention his Omnibus co-host was getting, before reading the room, and realizing that the correct answer was a tweet stressing that John is not an abusive father.
If this reassures anyone, I personally know John to be (a) a loving and attentive dad who (b) tells heightened-for-effect stories about his own irascibility on like ten podcasts a week. This site is so dumb.
— Ken Jennings (@KenJennings) January 3, 2021
John Roderick might not be a Daddy Dearest, but at the very least, it was proven he’s kind of a Twitter Racist. The internet quickly pulled out some past anti-Semitic and racist tweets made by Bean Dad:
Okay I’ve just been sent some of the greatest hits of Bean Dad and I’m thinking, parenting aside – maybe he’s not that good of a dude? Just throwing that out there. pic.twitter.com/umvvBqvWoc
— Heath Miller (@veryheathmiller) January 3, 2021
John Roderick deleted his Twitter account and has set his Instagram account to private. That’s when the internet started digging up some of Ken’s older tweets, which he has defended himself against in the past, but not deleted for some reason.
That must have been a heartbreaking decision for John. The only thing he loved more than torturing his 9-year-old daughter with a can opener, was the attention it brought him. About six seconds after the whole #BeanDad thing went viral, John put “Bean Dad since 2021” in his bio. But I guess “Bean Dad since 2021, and also the guy who spent a whole lot of 2010 tweeting with a hard J” wasn’t something he was as interested in.