June 17, 2012

At the Father's Day Café...

Richard Althouse

... don't you love your dad?

45 comments:

Palladian said...

No, but I certainly envy those that have one worthy of love.

ricpic said...

I love my Dad more with every passing year since his death.

bagoh20 said...

You do realize that although it's not visible in that photo, he was wearing shorts. You probably block it from your memory to avoid dealing with the horror.

edutcher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
m stone said...

Ann actually inhabited one of my dreams last night, a particularly vivid one that I will not share with my wife.

She and I were in a quaint restaurant, French, I believe, and we struggled for a good part of the night (so it seemed) over the food selection. I went for the off-beat, and Ann opted for some inexpensive, indistinguishable carry-out. Uncharacteristically disappointing. And nothing deep fried from what I recall.

No Meade. He must have been in the garden.

pm317 said...

Miss you more than ever!

edutcher said...

Palladian said...

No, but I certainly envy those that have one worthy of love.

Ditto.

Well, sort of.

He did instill in me an appreciation of education and culture.

And left me with one of life's great lessons, "Look it up".

PS Yours, Madame, or Meade's?

bagoh20 said...

I was lucky enough to have two dads. One biological and one step father. They were very different, and both gave me priceless input into who I am. I love, and miss you both. Happy Father's Day guys.

What I would give to be able to sit with them and have beer.

edutcher said...

m stone said...

Ann actually inhabited one of my dreams last night, a particularly vivid one that I will not share with my wife.

She and I were in a quaint restaurant, French, I believe, and we struggled for a good part of the night (so it seemed) over the food selection


If a woman that good-looking was in one of my dreams, whatever we might be struggling over, it wouldn't be food.

(then again...)

Rube said...

I lost my dad in 1952 he was 53 years old and I was 16. Sixty years later I still think of him often with fond memories.

bagoh20 said...

Speaking of dreams, I always wondered if my dreams were in color. I had one the other night of a crow attacking a snake which then engulfed the bird in it's coils and swallowed it. It seemed that my mind was doing it just to test the video system. It was incredibly beautiful, very vivid colors, sharp 3-D, wet, smooth and silent. I can still see it perfectly in my mind. It was definitely in color - rich vibrant color. Now I know.

Rube said...

I lost my dad in 1952 he was 53 years old and I was 16. Sixty years later I still think of him often with fond memories.

Ann Althouse said...

The picture is of my father.

I cropped it out of an old snapshot, a group scene of 1950s era adults at a party.

YoungHegelian said...

For reasons my brother and I have always been unable to fathom, we never got a coherent narrative out of my father of his WWII experiences in the 1st Armor Div in Italy.

Dribs & drabs in anecdotes, yes. But never a chronological narrative.

Maybe it was because it hurt too much to tell it, but I don't think so. I think mostly it was because my mother just always sucked up all the family narrative oxygen in the room.

It'll have to wait until we're both on the other side, I guess.

Rusty said...

ricpic said...
I love my Dad more with every passing year since his death.


Not a day goes by..........

Rusty said...

Aaaand Mary shows up and sucks all the civility out of the room.
Whatever you're parents taught you, Mary, it certainly wasn't manners.
Nor wit.

edutcher said...

YoungHegelian said...

For reasons my brother and I have always been unable to fathom, we never got a coherent narrative out of my father of his WWII experiences in the 1st Armor Div in Italy.

That's very common. Maybe things he did (because he had no choice), saw, etc.; stuff he figures anyone who wasn't there couldn't understand.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Yes.

At his age of 83, I realize that time is shorter than we both want to realize. He is still fun, offbeat, intellectually curious, humorous. While physically failing a bit, he is still active,traveling and enjoying life. We are looking forward to a visit in the next month as he and my stepmother are on their way to spend a week in a resort in Oregon.

We had a very different childhood than the norm with my parents. Bohemian, international travel, domestic travel,unique and interesting people, places and things. Always encouraged to try the NEW, extend our horizons, stretch our minds and at the same time savor the old traditions and family. We always felt loved, safe and sheltered.

Thank you Dad. Thank you Mom,(now deceased for over 30 years.)

wildswan said...

There is a picture of Obama's grandfather at Wikipedia which strongly suggests to me that this man was Obama's spiritual father - not the "dreams" Obama had at seventeen but this man, the one actually continuously though intermittently present for Obama's life as a baby, child, a teen and a young man. Take a look at the picture of the WW II soldier at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanley_Armour_Dunham ,

Phil 3:14 said...

My Dad had many faults, as I do, but I still loved him. He did what he could with the limitations of a poor Iowa kid, the son of a disabled school janitor.

(He went on to get an advanced degree; the first in his family to go to college.)

Petunia said...

I have the best, smartest dad in the world. Eighty-one and still going pretty strong, and I hope he'll be around for years to come. I have been insanely lucky in the parental sweepstakes. Both still here, reasonably healthy, in the home they've lived in since 1964.

Happy Father's Day, Dad!

MadisonMan said...

This is Dad's 1st Father's Day without Mom around. She was the one for whom celebration days were made. He's more a "Eh, whatever" type of holiday celebrator (as am I).

Happy Father's Day Dad. You're one in 7 billion! I am a lucky lucky guy that you're still around after 89+ years. (Dad's cousin is about to turn 100 -- longevity is a family thing).

JAL said...

Is Maxine back?

I didn't miss you.

JAL said...

My dad's been gone 10+ years. He was 90.

His later aging reminded me of the line in The Fellowship of the Ring where Frodo says something about feeling old (he was then quite old), like butter being spread too thin on bread. It seemed Dad was becoming transparent in his last year.

He was flawed, but when you get older and know more and look around and see where your parents "came from" ... it makes me appreciate how he did it without all those "help" books we have now.

I learned so much from him. I am able to do so many things that I realize I have not only in my genetic makeup, but my hands on and observed experiences which are direct gifts from him. My sister and I continue to remember him and value those tangible skills and ways of thinking he gave us. ("Hey, Dad would really think this was cool.") Even my brother, who had a seemingly more difficult time with Dad recognized the impact he had on us in positive ways.

He actually was something of the town character. Everyone knew him. The police chief was a friend and had a nickname for him. My dad could be a funny guy.

In addition, and perhaps more important, he was a man of integrity. We never had a lot, and he worked for himself. He did not cheat, he did not misrepresent, he always did a good job and he always cleaned up after.

Yeah. Writing this makes me miss him today. I wish I knew then what I know now about how much he shaped me.

Thanks Dad.

The Crack Emcee said...

Don't you love your dad?

As the only person I could ever really talk to, I miss my father more than my words can convey. He was brilliant, and funny, and I yearn for his guidance, now, more than ever.

HE would've loved my investigations, and insights, into cultism.

I sincerely thought, when I got married, I was somehow making up for his mistake. But today I know it was no mistake:

There was simply no other way it could be,...

ndspinelli said...

Crack, It's certainly no surprise you had a strong old man. So did I.

Lovernios said...

I suppose I loved my father in some basic emotional way, or perhaps I loved what my father could have been. Like Palladian, I’m also somewhat envious of people who had great fathers. My father never finished high school, but he should have. He never went to college, but he could have. He was smart, no doubt, but weak and lazy. Always looking for the easy way, a quick score. He was a wannabe tough guy who used to hang out at Walter’s Lounge which was owned by Walter Bennett the top Irish gangster in Boston during the 50s and 60s. Walter was smart enough not to let him into the gang proper.

So my old man went around working odd jobs: cab driver, gas station manager, delivery man, Electrolux salesman, etc. Never holding a job for very long. Interspersed with these were small-time crimes, or small time scams that didn’t net him much. Heavy drinking binges were followed up by periods of intense rehabilitation where he would clean up his act, quit drinking and get a new job. Perhaps he was bipolar. And of course, that would never last long. He’d stop in to get just one pop with the boys and he’d be back to his familiar and comfortable ways.

He died about 10 years ago at the age of 72 from colon cancer. He had a tumor the size of a grapefruit. It must have been growing in his gut for years; he must have been in intense pain for some time. He never went to the doctor. He did leave me with one lesson, though. Get regular medical exams, especially a colonoscopy. When I learned that his father died of colon cancer, I immediately went to my doctor and scheduled one. I just had my third and they found a small polyp and removed it. It was benign but of the type that could turn cancerous.

I like reading about great fathers, especially here at Ann’s blog. I imagine what it would be like, to be able to have that sense of pride and loyalty that some of you express. Count yourselves as fortunate to be so blessed.

Happy Father’s Day.

ndspinelli said...

Thanks. Lovernios. You seem to have some peace w/ the reality of your old man. I hope as years pass you gain more peace. I never forget how blessed I was.

Nick

caplight45 said...

My Father was a Christian, the kind that makes other people become one. He always loved younger people and they loved him. He was a mentor to many of them.

He adored my Mother I believe in no small part because his own Mother died giving birth to him and his twin brother.

As my Father lay dying, having had a stroke, my Mother leaned down to his ear and said, "Remember our promise." Three days later she too died of a massive stroke. We buried them together on the same day. I think she got her wish.

It was eighteen years before I didn't choke up at the blessing over the Christmas meal. Still miss them. It will be twenty years next month.

lightcat said...

Caplight45 is my dad. He is a man of great wit, love, and integrity. He taught me that handshakes should always be firm, to work hard no matter the job, and to be bold in following God.

True story: before I applied for my first job in a shoe store (at age 16) he made me practice introducing myself, including the aforementioned firm handshake.

I married an amazing man because Dad modeled for my sisters and I what a real man is. My Poppop modeled that for him. I am deeply blessed.

Love you Daddy!

The Commercial Traveller said...

My wonderful father passed away last May. I miss him every day. Whenever I read something interesting in a blog like this one, I think to myself, "oh, I should show this to Dad" and then I have to painfully remind myself that I can't.

Lovernios said...

Yeah, ndspinelli, I’ve accepted that my family is was it is and that’s no excuse not to strive for something better.

I joined the Army after high school and learned a lot about myself and others. When I got out I started learning martial arts which helped me even further. I learned computer programming and began an IT career. I’m now manager of a team of software engineers. I’ve got 35 people working for me. I’ve got a terrific step-son and a healthy, happy grandson (three years old - he sent me a Father's Day card) so I feel blessed too.

For me life is good. I do feel bad for the rest of the eight kids who haven’t been able to rise above it, though.

Deb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Deb said...

Dad died at age 57, 35 years ago. I'd give anything to talk to him now. There are so many things about him I do not know because at that time although I was interested, I didn't know what to ask. I could go on and on. I miss you Dad.

Paddy O said...

lightcat, thanks for sharing that! What a great tribute to a man who is a valued part of the community hereabouts.

My dad is a great friend, a model to me in every way of how to be a faithful husband and father, sacrificing so much so that we can move forward in our lives, a constant encourager and amazing person to talk deeply with or go hiking with or move a house in a day with.

wyo sis said...

I know what unconditional love is because of my father. He's the greasiest man I've ever known. He was 72 when he died. Just 10 months before our last child was born. My brother and sister also had babies within a month of each other. We joke that Dad made sure we had 3 kids that he had a part in sending. Each one of the three is a perfect embodiment of at least one of his great qualities. He lives on in them. I love you Dad.

XRay said...

I'm with Palladian, I do envy you folks that had a good dad. Mine was a complete and utter asshole. It was my Uncle who, debatable I suppose, set me up with something approximate with right values.

How about a National Uncle's Day.

wyo sis said...

My dad is not the greasiest man I've ever known, he's the greatest. I really hate typing on an ipad.

leslyn said...

It was fun trying to figure out "greasiest."

Palladian said...

XRay, my uncle (father's brother) was also a huge influence on my life— like a father to me. He died in 2007, and left an empty space in my life into which nothing else fits. I think this is how losing a father feels.

My actual father still lives, a paranoid schizophrenic in a wheelchair. But before the caustic suspicions and rasping internal voices and the cutting of dozens of holes in the walls looking for listening devices, there was a man who abandoned every responsibility, a man who stole and abused, a man who vanished for years, a man who forgot his only son before he forgot himself. A man who I cannot forgive because of the people he destroyed.

But I was also lucky; his parents, my late grandparents, were the best of people, a military officer and his wife who showered me with affection and a semblance of a normal life, who understood that I was different and special and rare, who selflessly gave everything they could in the evening of their lives to the child of the worst of their children. They were a way out of that terrible town, a window on a vast world, a shelter in the storm of my adolescence, when my mother married a man even worse than my father.

There is a force even more powerful than the genetics of mom and dad, and that is love. It is not my father who helped created me, but the people (my grandparents, my uncle, my mother...) who saved me that I love and thank on Father's day, and every day.

ndspinelli said...

Palladian, Thanks. There is often truth late @ night. It's the truthiest part of the 24 hour cycle.

ndspinelli said...

leslyn, your avatar hero makes most top 10 "greasiest" lists.

XRay said...

Yes, thanks from here too, Palladian. Inspiring, in the sense of living up to ideals, story.

Almost Ali said...

SCOTUS:

Just to reiterate, Obamacare, Yomamacare; we're not worthy.

(or maybe they're just terribly, terribly bashful)

Johnboy said...

I love my Dad and miss him now for 16 years, but yesterday I spent the day with a great father-in-law, and it brightened his day also.