20 traits I inherited from my father:
1.the ability to cry unstoppably when Iam laughing(not good for my mascara)
2.his walk, minus the Korean War injury to his knee
3.his small – boned ‘chicken legs’
4.a love for nature and the great outdoors
5.my Native American blood
7.a sense of humor
8.fondness for whiskey
10. excellent work ethic
11. my great shooting aim, my dad is just as deadly with his slingshot as he is with his deer rifle.
13.my conservative nature
14. his long dark eyelashes
15. my poker face
19.straight as arrow hair
20.a good appetite
15 things he taught me:
1. how to buy a good steak
2. how to do laundry properly
3. how to be an excellent swimmer
4.get back in the saddle immediately after getting bucked off, do not hesitate
5.take pride in myself
6.Life isint fair, get over it
7.its okay to make mistakes, just dont make the same mistake twice
8.respect my elders
9.how to skin and clean a deer, rabbit, squirrel, and clean a fish(ick)
10.how to kayak and paddle a canoe
11.it is okay to be afraid but not okay to let it stop me
12.some risks are worth taking
13.values are important
14.when life sucks, make it better, there is always someone else worse off than me.
My Father is far from perfect, but as Fathers go, he did a good job raising me, my 3 sisters, and my one brother. He worked hard to make a good living, he made sure we had the best schooling available. Putting 5 kids thru Catholic school isint an easy or cheap feat, even back in those days, I am sure.
Once when I was very young(about 4 yo), I remember one summer weekend being at my Aunt Ginny’s cabin on the Lake. My mother and I rode up early with her(shes my mom’s sister), my dad, and other family members were coming later. It turned dark and a bad thunderstorm blew in. I can remember being absolutely terrified when the electric went out, my mother tried to console me, but I wanted my dad. I knew it would all be okay if he was there. I laid under the bed quilts wide awake until he arrived, I am sure as soon as I knew he was there to protect me, I fell fast asleep.
A funny story about when my Father bought me my first car. It was a red Honda Civic. I liked that car a lot. We went to the bank, bought the car, then to the Secretary of State’s Office and bought the tag, then to the State Farm Insurance Company took care of the insurance legalities. As we were saying our goodbyes outside the insurance office, my dad said to make sure I kept enough gas in it, drove careful, and if any lights or gauges come on 1. park and shut off the car 2. call my brother in law G. ( a mechanic) to come and get me, then fix the car 3. if I cant reach G. to call him (dad)
After I told my husband this story he now understands my uncomprehension and dislike for machines of any kind. Luckily he too has a mechanical degree so I am in good shape!
When the rebellious teenager years hit me, remember those? The idea that all parents are clueless, it doesnt matter whose parent, yours, mine, my best friends, the neighbor kid’s, they all are old fashioned, up tight, dictators only worthy of our rolling eyes. When my poor Father tried to teach me life lessons during a small spell of my teenage years, I listened unwillingly then did my own thing. Luckily I filed those lessons away inside my brain to be used at a later date. That date being the day I officially became a mature adult. Who would have thought at the young age of 15 or 16 I should have listened to my Father’s wisdom? Obviously not me because years later I realized he knew what he was talking about.
My Father had the awesome ability to stare down every one of my date’s or boyfriend’s to the point of making them squirm and answer in yes sir, no sir, I understand sir, to all of his statements made either about dating me or anything in general. My first steady boyfriend Mark was scared to death of my Father. I felt bad for him but Mark never dodged him, he thought it was cool that my Dad looked out for me.
Like Ive stated before, in my teens and a good portion of my twenties, I was a big partier. This was no secret to my Father I am sure. I can remember spending some time in the Gold Chair in the superintendants office for a keg party my friend Dan and I threw on All Saints Day(a Catholic Holiday, no school for us) but were never actually busted for it. The public school kids had class and attended our party during thier breaks and lunch hours, well word got back to the public school. Dan and I barely made our escape in my Honda with the near empty keg. Luckily the law didnt know which car had the beer and there were many cars leaving the scene. My dad got a phone call about that little incident, I denied it to the fullest. Of course it didnt help matters that best friend L went back to school after consuming many beers on an empty stomach, reporting to her Algebra III class, leaving abruptly, getting caught barfing in the girls restroom, then escorted to the public high school’s principle’s office and barfing again in his trash basket. and subsequently getting suspended for 3 days from school. Thus, marring her straight A student, good girl personna. The guilt did point directly to me, but I wasnt fessing up. My dad was actually kinda cool about the whole thing, but I know he was pissed at me.
Parent’s can say some funny stuff. Once when my friend L and I came home from a party or a dance, we were suprised to see my father still awake watching TV. He asked us about our night, if we’d been drinking (which I am sure was yes but we said NO WAY) then he asked us if we’d been smoking ‘that whacky tobacco’. Best friend L. and I were like “what?!?” he said ‘you know, that pot stuff, were you taking it? did you take pot?’ we about fell over in hysterics, the answer was no, its a good thing too because if we had been high, we’d have died from the unstoppable laughing fit that high people succumb too. She and I still giggle over this story today, sober!
Best friend L and I had a similar ordeal with her Father at about the same age. We went out partying, came home very late in his new car, made a mess in the kitchen eating away the drunk munchies, then crashed into bed. It was the night before opening day of deer season and we were all going hunting. At 5:30 am her dad was shouting upstairs for us to get our hung over asses out of bed, he wasnt waiting. (her dad is a die hard serious hunter) Of course we jumped up, with our throbbing headaches and cotton mouth, we knew our asses were on thin ice as it was breaking curfew. Her Father had inspected his car, we were responsible about taking care of it when allowed to drive it. He came strolling in (mind u this is 5:30 am) L. and I were getting dressed in our hunters orange in silence, hoping our headaches would let up and dreading the 6inches of fresh white snow that fell over night. Her Father tossed a couple of leaves at us. He said “look at what I found in the car’s back seat, that is marijuana”. L and I were like “WTF?” silently to eachother, we didnt get high in those days, we knew it couldnt have been weed. L and I took a closer look at his evidence, it looked like some kind of spice or seasoning, parsely or something. We told him it was not pot. He disagreed and threatened us with “I know people who can tell me if this is marijuana and if you girls have been doing it!” despite our hellish hangovers, best friend L and I giggled. It was funny, obviously he didnt see the empty fifth of Southern Comfort and empty pint of cinnamon schapppes under the front passenger seat. Later on that week, her Father apologized for the accusation, he worked at a grocery store and it was indeed a spice but he didnt apologize for making us suffer in the pines, in the freezing cold snow, sitting in the crappiest, open deer blind he had!
I know I caused my share of my father’s gray hairs. I know he worries about me still yet. I also know that if my world should get turned upside down, I can always go ‘home’, that door is always open. It is a nice feeling, knowing I am loved that much. So, to the good Father’s of the world, especially mine, Happy Father’s Day!