Editor’s Note: This post is in honor of my father, but to the other “Dad” in my life – my sweet Sexy Hubby, I vow to allow you to spend Sunday on your river of choice, fly-rod in hand, searching for the “big one” without complaint. And when you return home after a rough day of blue-ribbon fishing, I will have an extra-lean steak cooked to perfection awaiting you.
I can measure my life by the sayings of my father – one “dad-ism” at a time.
Dads are certainly a unique breed, especially those from the World War II era. You never talk about your problems. You keep your emotions tucked safely away where no one can see them. That way, no one can accuse you of being soft.
The only time I ever saw my dad cry was when he was in severe pain, and even then, it was a cry-laced with mini-laughs in an attempt to make us feel better.
I was very young, and remember being very puzzled.
Is dad crying?
Or is he laughing?
I couldn’t tell the difference.
When dad arrived home from work, we would race to greet him. Did he have any ”lunch leftovers” in the now-antique lunch box?
What a surprise, day after day, there was always some tiny treat for us! We were always thrilled to find a hidden sweet. Of course, it wasn’t until years later I realized the treats were no accident – just a sign of fatherly love.
My dad was showing his tender side, if ever so silently.
Born of humble beginnings in western Pennsylvania to a hardworking mother and mainly out-of-work father – my dad always busted his hump to provide for us. One of his favorite sayings (there were hundreds) was, “I work my fingers to the bone and what do I get? Bony-fingers.”
I love this shot of my dad - chillin’ on a Sunday, prior to little brats running hither and yon disturbing his newspaper-reading peace. Kids have a way of invading every quiet corner of the universe.
I always had a healthy fear of my father, and I am certain that fear kept me on the straight and narrow. Little did I know, my dad was secretly a complete and total push-over! His bark was certainly worse than his bite, but that bark scared the day-lights out of me for most of my adolescence life.
Because of my dad’s idiosyncrasies, I still never do my nails in the front room, as “personal hygiene belongs in the bathroom” and try not to “talk with my mouth full” or eat like I am “going to a fire.”
Meat should be prepared medium-rare, and not cooked until it “tastes like shoe-leather” and God forbid if you’re caught slouching or burn a scented candle! Dad hates when the house ”smells like a bordello!”
We always had music on in our house growing up, as my dad loved his tunes. Although, he couldn’t stand my beloved “Dick and Martha” (his nickname for Donny & Marie) I could always identify Janis, Jim or Doctor Hook. I even recall attending a Huey Lewis & the News concert with my dad.
Lastly, I pity the fool who attempts to feed my father left-overs. Nary a left-over touched my lips until I was raising a family of my own. In fact, when our children were young if Sexy Hubby prepared a meal, basically anything “left-over” was thrown into a pot and labeled, “Chef’s Surprise!” (Thankfully, my dad wasn’t invited to witness such blasphemy!)
Love you, Dad!