Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day

I can't allow aged satrap* David Broder to remain at the top of the page all day.

To all the Hegemanics who are fathers: Happy Father's Day.

A few years ago, I got hold of a great book called Killed: Great Journalism Too Hot to Print in which cartoonist Ted Rall reflects on life with a "dad who wasn't a father" and concludes, "This year on Father's Day, I'm calling my real dad. I'm calling Mom."

Father's Day ain't for everyone.

I was lucky enough to have a dad who was a father. Alas, he's gone now, but while he was around, he reminded me of Tony Soprano, had Tony been educated and in a legitimate line of business. My father had a lot of good qualities -- curiosity about the world, an analytical mind, great skill with hammer and saws, leadership skills, devotion to my mother (especially during an illness he was powerless to stop), physical strength, stoicism in the face of great physical suffering, playfulness, and courage. He had some bad ones, too: a temper, a working class guy's suspicion of "the other", an affinity for AM political talk radio, impatience with the emotions of others, and estrangement from his own.

My point is, he was a regular person, with a great many good qualities and more than a few lousy ones. And yeah, I miss him.

Anyway, not sure where I'm going with this. Use comments to reflect on the fathers you've known.

*Credit to Kevin Baker for that gem of a construction.

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