Sunday, June 15, 2014

Happy Father's Day To All The World's Dad's Especially My Pa

On Friday my dad's favorite grandson named Jason, he being the father of my dad's one and only great-grandson, Spencer Jack, partially named after my dad, whose name is Jack, emailed me the photo you see here, with the question accompanying the email asking me what was the occasion where this photo was taken.

First off, from the top, that would be me, looking all bloated and tied on the far left, next to my favorite brother-in-law, also named Jack, next to his wife, my favorite sister, Jackie, next to my not so favorite sister, Clancy, next to Spencer Jack's dad, and then his dad, my little brother Jake, next to his first wife, Spencer Jack's favorite grandma, Cindy.

In the front row we are looking at Christopher, aka CJ, sitting next to my dad, sitting next to my mom, with my favorite nephew, Joey, behind my mom, with my favorite nephew, Jeremy, aka JR, sitting in front of his big brother, CJ.

So, Jason's question was, why were we all in this picture? And where is Aunt Michele?

Well, I told Jason this picture was taken via my antique Nikon camera's self timer on November 3, 1994 prior to all of us heading north, to Lynden, for my grandma's, my dad's mom's, funeral.

As Jason later so eloquently put it, his Aunt Michele is not in this picture due to her tendency to always be late.

With today being Father's Day, I am just a bit sad that I am not one of those getting Father's Day cards today.

Being a good dad is a tough job.

I was a lucky guy because I was blessed with a very good dad. I don't think I would have managed to do as good a job as my dad did, raising five kids.

I found taking care of a cat to be taxing.

I learned a lot of good lessons from my dad which my time on the planet has taught me others were not so blessed to learn.

Things like staying calm when something goes awry.

I was only 13 when we took our first family vacation trip to Disneyland. The level of anticipation regarding going to Disneyland, for me and my siblings, was unlike anything we had experienced before.

Only a few miles into our trip to Disneyland we experienced a major malfunction with our vacation trailer's wheels.

Dad pulled off what was then not quite Interstate 5. Dad then removed the broken wheel part. He then un-hitched the car from the trailer. We then drove south, to Marysville, to find someone to weld the broken part. My dad found a fixer, the fix was made, we returned to the trailer, installed the fix, re-hitched the trailer and were on our way, with mom making us a ham on potato roll lunch on the road which to this day has me feeling fondly at any mention of potato rolls.

Mom and dad made something difficult seem like just part of the adventure.

Years later I found myself back in California. I'd gone to a taping of the Laverne & Shirley sitcom at Paramount Studios. Leaving Paramount my troubled 65 Mustang Fastback decided to cease working its clutch. That night was spent stuck in Hollywood. The next morning the malfunction was fixed. I stayed calm and sort of enjoyed the bizarre experience, thanks to lessons learned of going with the flow, from my dad.

Years later, long after the Laverne & Shirley debacle, I was driving through Death Valley when suddenly it became obvious I had a flat tire. The others in my tour group went in to full panic mode. While I just thought to myself, worst case scenario, we have to walk 6 miles to Stovepipe Wells to seek help.

Turned out switching out the flat was no big deal, and then repairing that flat in the town of Bishop, California, turned out to be fun, benefit of lessons learned from my calm dad.


Happy Father's Day, and thank you for being such a good dad, Dad!!!!

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