Sunday, June 21, 2009

Let Us Now Praise Not So Famous Men

So I post this photo here for some simple reasons. It's Father's Day. And the first day of Summer two thousand and nine. And this picture - isn't it great? - captures both these thoughts pretty well. My dad died when I was nineteen years old and he was just 49; I was born on his 30th birthday. He was a riot, a charmer, a ball buster, a little bit Dean Martin a little bit Robert Mitchum. He taught me how to fish, tell elk prints from deer, make donuts and marinara sauce, the importance of hard work, beautiful music, raucous laughter, card games, true love, attention to detail, compassion, tolerance, wisdom, fearlessness.
Having a life. Not watching other people's lives pass by and calling it good, but honestly breathing and accomplishing something every single damn day. Even as he was sick and dying of cancer he was building a deck on our house. Passion, that's a good enough word. Passion for breathing in and breathing out. Here's to every father who lives with that kind of intensity, that kind of grabbing at life and appreciating its singular intensities. Here's to Charlotte's Dad and the time she had with him. I wish there had been more. And here's to the first day of Summer and the second day of Summer in Italy. Right now it looks like blue skies ahead.


  1. Janet, you know what? I can see you in your Dad...the posture, the laugh, the eternal youth. It's you. I love this post so much...for so many reasons. So much to say, and almost, so little reason to say it...we all know...I feel sad. Not just because you lost him, but because he lost you. He would be so amazed and happy to see who you are...but then again, he already was, I know.

  2. Anonymous12:23 PM

    what a handsome photo of your dad..Ill always remember how he loved to tease me and try to get me to talk...and how he snuck up on our trailer and pretended to be a bear and scared the snot out of us...he was a marvelous man, and a wonderful were

  3. Anonymous10:47 PM

    I think maybe I would love your dad more than I love my dad!!! That picture is so E. Hemmingway. Now go write some more xoMona