Sunday, June 6, 2010


Today is my Dad's day.  It's also his birthday. 

My dad is:  an entire laundry list of things.  I've already re-typed this part three times.  This could take a while.  

My dad is a veteran.  He was stationed in Germany and lived there with my mom. After Germany they homesteaded on the "Ponderosa" with  a pig named Arnold.  I wonder if they ever think of Arnold when they eat bacon? I wonder if they ate Arnold?  After Arnold, came three real kids.  A couple of horses.  Some doves.  A gaggle of geese.  Three dogs.   To say the least,  my dad has the occasional "wild hair up his ass".  My dad worked 13 long years offshore.   Between that job and his current job, he worked construction to provide for our family.  He has worked hard his entire life.  He still works hard for us.  I'd never want him to think it wasn't appreciated.  He'll say "It wasn't much, I wish I could have given you more".  But to me, it was the world.  He taught by example, putting family first.

Sophomore year our class read "Casey at Bat", followed by "Mother to Son" by Langston Hughes:

Well, son, I'll tell you:
Life for me ain't been no crystal stair.
It's had tacks in it,
And splinters,
And boards torn up,
And places with no carpet on the floor --
But all the time
I'se been a-climbin' on,
And reachin' landin's,
And turnin' corners,
And sometimes goin' in the dark
Where there ain't been no light.
So boy, don't you turn back.
Don't you set down on the steps
'Cause you finds it's kinder hard.
Don't you fall now --
For I'se still goin', honey,
I'se still climbin',
And life for me ain't been no crystal stair.

I think this fits my dad perfectly.  You have to keep on keepin' on.

Eight years ago on Christmas Eve's Eve, my dad began having a heart attack driving home after working a 12 hour shift.  It began on the bridge.  He drove himself to the nearest hospital.  He saved himself. 

Daddy is the dream maker, the candy man, the pied piper and Joe.  I'm glad we got another year out of you, Old Man.  Keep on, keepin' on.  Happy Birthday, Papa!

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