Happy Belated Birthday Dad
In all the Holiday craziness, I realized I never did a top ten list for my father’s birthday.
I have done a top ten list for everyone in my family on their birthday this year.
It struck me out of nowhere about a week ago that I never put one together for my father. His Birthday is December 17th, and I hope he did not take my omission personally.
SO! Without further Ado:
My very first BELATED top ten list in honor of my father’s birthday:
10. Steve is a walking contradiction in terms. You just can’t put him in a category. His favorite beer is Old Style, but he is also a wine connoisseur. He Loves Bob Seger, but also appreciates opera. He has a low tolerance for crap, and will rant and rave if he can’t find his glasses, but is very calm and focused in a crisis. A fine combination of yin and yang.
9. Steve is funny. He has a well developed sense of humor and can go on a rant like nobody’s business. He has no qualms about calling a government official a “fucking ninny”. He is really quite good at mocking people who deserve to be mocked. His tirades are an endless source of entertainment for the whole family.
8. My dad is a no-fuss kind of a guy. There is just no guesswork with him. You ask him what he wants for his birthday, and he tells you “a Blue crewneck sweatshirt from Old Navy in a size XL. They are $19.99 with a coupon from the paper. Here is the coupon.” My formula for the perfect gift for my father: Clothes that aren’t itchy, or tight around the neck. Works every time. You ask him what he wants for his birthday dinner and he says “hamburgers on the grill and potato chips”. He is so easy to please, it feels like cheating sometimes.
7. On the other hand, you don’t always know what to expect. Like the time years ago when I brought my old boyfriend home to meet my parents for the first time. My father had just gotten back from Karate class. He shook the guy’s hand and then said “pretend like your stabbing me!” The poor guy looked at him, totally baffled, and my father repeated “pretend you’re stabbing me!” My date laughed and with reluctant, nervous enthusiasm, plunged an imaginary dagger into my father’s chest. My dad promptly spun him around and put him in a headlock. Then we left and went to a movie.
6. Steve has done pretty well having raised four girls and no boys. God bless him, he still tries to get one of us interested in watching boxing and car-racing. From the next room, he will shout updates out to whoever is making a sandwich in the kitchen. It’s just not going to happen, but he still tries. There is a lot of smiling and nodding, which he seems to take in stride.
5. My father is a great tipper. In fact, he is very generous in general.
4. Back to the contradiction thing, one year he got all my mother’s Chirstmas presents at Walgreen’s. The next year he got her expensive perfume and jewelry. You really never know what you are going to get with this man. He really is like a box of chocolates.
3. He used to play a game with us at the dinner table. When all four girls were nearly done with their dinner, and after Molly had spilled her milk (like she did at damn near every meal we sat down to), he would bellow “Who wants……..Banana Cream pie?” and we would flail excitedly, and scream
“We do! We do!”
Then he would reply “Too Bad!”
“Who wants chocolate pudding?”
“We do! We do!
And then we would laugh our heads off. You know, we never did get any dessert. But we all thought it was great fun. We were really quite stupid.
2. He is the Cliff Claven of the animal world. He is fascinated by wildlife, and will call me at home after returning from the cabin to tell me about the trumpeter swans and the burgeoning Wolf population, and the local gossip of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. You take it all with a grain of salt, because the man has been known to embellish a story. But he can tell a story and spout off fun facts like no one’s business. I love when he calls just to tell me that stuff.
1. My father is secretly a very sensitive man. I know he is proud of all of his daughters, and he loves to hang out and have a good time with his family. The moment you walk in the door, he is usually offering a glass of wine or a beer, and telling you about the latest neighborhood scandal. He has a great way of letting you know he cares without necessarily saying it outright. That would be too awkward. But he manages to let us all know, nonetheless.
Happy birthday Dad.