It's the BillyBlog's Father's birthday today. The Ancient One, Blessed Be He, is a fine old Dad, and we are separated, as I type this, by two thousand eight hundred and twenty three and three quarters miles, or just under 43 hours of driving time.
The worst thing about living in Brooklyn is that I do not get to see my father as often as I did in the period of 1985 to 1997, a glorious twelve years when the majority of our lives were spent in the same time zone.
I am afraid to write something more poignant, because I fear that I will fall short of my true feelings for the dude. But he is many things besides a great father. He's a good husband (third time's a charm), a lover of Jazz, a fan of good baseball teams (the Tigers and the Dodgers, in that order), and a suffering fan of a bad football team (the Lions).
I have put him through a lot in this life. Choosing to fracture my skull at age 9, (when he wasn't able to get to my bedside, an ocean and a half continent away), piercing my ear, back when it was still slightly shocking, and moving to New York with his infant granddaughter before she even turned one.
We don't see each other enough, and that makes me sad. But, we have a relationship that is much better than most, I'd like to think, and that fills me with joy.
Today, he turns 71, and I thought I'd share these written sentiments, which feel so inadequate, in the grand scheme of things. I wish I could deliver them in person.
Above is a photograph of my father from almost seventy years ago (yes, kiddies, they had cameras back then) on April 15, 1939. I love this picture, because you can see his pronounced dimples, which make his smile, even with age, such a warm and welcoming expression.
Thanks, Dad, for all that you've done for me, all the wisdom you impart, and all the love and caring you have shown and will continue to give all of the people in your life!
With much love,