Saturday, June 28, 2014

Mailman in shining armor

My father could be a great conversationalist, but he was more often a story teller. A commentator. Sometimes a dictator. Oh sure, a benevolent dictator, but a dictator nonetheless. (I think I inherited that from him and I'm not nearly as unhappy about that as I probably should be, but I digress...)

Some of the things Daddy said were arranged so that you might think you were having a conversation. But you were really being directed.

As I mentioned in Part 3, my father's soft heart shone through, even in some of the dictatorial moments.

He found a shaggy, flea-ridden, puppy behind a dumpster on his rural mail route one hot summer day when I was in high school. He put her in his car, gave her melted ice from his Coke, and drove around the rest of the route with a scroungy little passenger. We already had two dogs. When he came home with her that afternoon, Daddy poured himself a glass of iced tea (sweetened, of course), suggested we I make a pot of fresh coffee, got his newspaper, and settled himself in a lawn chair in the shade of the back yard. There transpired a series of directions to me, each issued with a heavy sigh as he took a break from his newspaper.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Fond memories and no hope

Now for the good stuff

Father's Day snuck up on me this year. This first one without Daddy was especially bittersweet. It seemed like a good time to think about the stuff he said.

In Part 2 I explained that my father spoke with a certainty that made it almost impossible to tell if he was sharing factual information or messing with you for the sheer pleasure of messing with you. It occurs to me that it won't be nearly as amusing to see the things in print. You really had to look into his face and hear him say these things to experience the humor. But since I can't re-create the family moments, we'll just have to do the best we can with the written word.

Some of my personal favorites:

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

It's a well known fact!

After great pain, a formal feeling comes

As I mentioned in Part 1, my father has always had a wicked cool sense of humor and a sharp mind. I grew up surrounded by observational humor and deadpan delivery of sometimes outrageous statements. I took it for granted.

I won't get to hear much of that deadpan delivery again. Not unless I hear it remembered in family stories. Or hear it in my dreams. Or maybe channeled through the children and grandchildren (and even great-grandchildren) he influenced.

Daddy was hospitalized on December 26. He died on January 22. Even as I was writing my last post in December, he was dying.