Those of you lucky enough to have your fathers alive and well, enjoy the day, and remember how fleeting life is.
The best part of life is spending time with your family and friends on these very special holidays. Trips, work, and anything else that aren't family and friends are just the minutiae in-between the memories we hold so dear.
For me there are so many fond memories with my father, which is a great sign that he was a very special dad. One of my favorite things he used to do was when he put me on his knee and would sing "This is the way the little boys ride, the little boys ride, the little boys ride so early in the morning" Each phrase would intensify the velocity of the bounce on his knee until he almost bounced me off his knee when he got to "This is the way the cowboys ride... etc. so early in the morning".
Another wonderful time was when I was really small and he would hoist me up onto his feet and walk me around the house. Simple but lasting memories that captured my heart and connected me with the simplistic joy that comes from unbridled laughter.
Hunting for Easter baskets, Christmas rituals, Halloween costumes my parents made, Thanksgiving dinners, and the very special birthdays were all presented with a love that fostered a connection that will live on until there is no life in me.
One of the funniest moments was when my dad (whom never stuttered) attempted to explain the birds and the bees. He stuttered through a rendition that was part vaudeville and part Leonard Nimoy "In Search Of". I kept a straight face until he hastily retreated to the safety of our house in which case I kept my muffled laughter to myself. I appreciated the courage it took to address such an issue and wondered if I would someday be placed in the same uncomfortable situation. As fate would have it I wasn't placed in that position since I had a daughter and that explanation was up to her mom.
Sometimes in junior high, high school, and even college my dad would entertain those that came over to the house. He would play the piano from his repertoire of vaudeville and burlesque comedy a series of very funny songs such as "Don't go in the Lions Cage Tonight", and "I left my Hair in San Francisco". The introduction to "I left my Hair in San Francisco" started with him explaining the only time he could play that particular tune was when he had a piano that was a "Baldwin".
No matter how many times I heard those tunes I would laugh uproariously until I nearly convulsed. His timing, inflection, and skill set created the "perfect storm". My friends were laughing too and that is when I knew that although my dad didn't know much about sports or cars he provided entertainment that most dads couldn't... and there in lies the gift.
There isn't one day I don't think about my dad. The compassion, love, and understanding from my dad prepared me to be the father I am today. It is with that spirit and connection I honor my father today... and for as long as forever is.
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