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Lessons from my father . . .

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Posted: Thursday, June 16, 2011 10:12 am | Updated: 11:57 am, Thu Jun 16, 2011.

With Father's Day approaching, I thought I'd say a few words about fathers.

Mostly mine.

I'm pretty sure I got a good one. Not having any more than the one, I haven't got much to compare him with, but by all accounts, he's above par.

For one thing, I haven't had a mom for a very long time. She's been gone for most of my adult life so it was up to Dad to listen to my problems and help me with my blunders. We developed a pretty honest relationship as adults shortly after my mother died and that's been a blessing.

Dad was very much a typical American father for the day. He worked a  lot, which kept him away for most of the day-to-day business of raising kids. He earned the money while my mom stayed home with us. Mom did different things like attend school and hold various jobs, but nothing full-time while Dad was bringing home the bacon. So I didn't really know him very well until I was grown up and on my own. And thus began the life lessons.

He would bail us out of a financial jam — both only with good reason and not without a stern lecture. Money does not grow on trees. I'd still like to know why.

He rebuilt my car that was almost totaled because it was the 1970s and I didn't need insurance. Now I carry insurance and not just because it's required by law.

He's listened to me rant against my husband and then conveniently forgot anything bad once we made up. I'm not sure how he did that, but that's the way he is.

He hosted a fabulous wedding reception at his home for two of our best friends even after he found out about it after reading his invitation. People still talk about that party. Many of whom call him "Dad" because that's how they've always known him.

He's also been an inspirational mentor in business matters. Those of in the family that work in management have learned a thing or two from the old man. He didn't get to retire early, build his dream home and live comfortably by making bad choices.

And he does most of this with a kind of Andy Griffith-esque homespun humor. It takes quite a bit to ruffle his feathers.

He's slowed down considerably now. His memory is fading and we listen to some of the same stories repeatedly. But he still comes up with a profound revelation now and again. It often comes out as an odd mixed metaphor — but said with much conviction.

He's the only dad I have and the only one I've ever wanted. I'm at an age that has seen many of my dear friends losing their parents. And even though it's a natural process, it's not easy. They probably wish they had one more Father's Day with their dads and I don't blame them.

So I'm going to go hang out with my dad on Sunday and share some wine and a good meal and probably listen to a few stories. Some of them repeatedly.

But that's okay because they're good stories.

Happy Father's Day.

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  • Brandi Poole posted at 1:56 pm on Thu, Jun 16, 2011.

    Brandi Poole Posts: 79

    Great blog. I too love your dad, and want to wish him a Happy Father's Day. I am lucky to know him. I miss mine and wish that I could spend more time with him. That won't happen, he's passed on.

    All of you with Dad's, spend the time, do it now. You will be glad that you did.

  • Jim Anger posted at 1:27 pm on Thu, Jun 16, 2011.

    Jim Anger Posts: 89

    When I think of my Dad...I think of him with his goat "Seniore Wally" and (of course!) his ever present shopping cart - "Chromie th' Cruiser"! Never too busy to bum a smoke and ask for some change; And always one with a big yarn! (he LOVES to knit). As he gets older he too has slowed down. Not quite the same since that "shiv" assault in prison back in '99. But I still enjoy a big tall mug of his homemade toilet wine now and again..and his spot on impressions of Bridgette Bardot and Sebastian Cabbott -THE BEST!.. Someday...I'm sure I'll miss him. But for now I wish he'd bathe! (tears). He's one heck of an old, crippled-up geezer...but man can he pogo! When it all comes down to it...Really, isn't that what DAD's are truly all about! Happy Father's Day - Dad...and Wally, and Chromie!

  • posted at 10:41 am on Thu, Jun 16, 2011.


    A very thoughtful tribute to your father, a man I have met on a few occasions. Hard working men and fathers are to be treasured
    My dad's hands tell the story of his life. Its a long story and not without a few scars but still gentle enough to hold my heart.


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