Father’s Day Salute, to mine and yours…(updated for my dad’s 87th Birthday)

Dad and kids at the Jersey Shore.

At the end of this entry, I am pasting in the blog from last year about my dad. However, even though you are with someone all your life, you realize that there is always something they can show you and you can learn and take to heart.

In the past year, my dad has aged one year, but my appreciation of him has aged many lifetimes. As many of you know, I have had a hellacious year. The job loss, the loss of contact with an industry that I love and have loved since 1983, the continued weight loss, the two successful knee replacements, the frustrating and frankly dispiriting job search, and the capper, the lung disease development. All of this has knocked me on my ass big time. The only thing worse would be if BP CEO Tony Hayward was my PR guy.

However, the constant in my life, also called MY DAD, has been the reason that I still persist, that I still attempt, that I still succeed. Dad knows how to deflect the frustration when it needs to be. Dad knows how to focus the blow so that it is temporary, not devastating. Dad knows how to make you laugh when you are determined to scream. Dad knows how to point you back on track, even though the track seems to be barricaded.

I like to quote a line from a Barry Manilow song to describe myself..Crazy In A Way That No One Else Could Be…but it could be modified as Confident In A Way That No One Else Could Be. That is the only real thing that any father can hope to give to a son or daughter. They can make you book smart, they can show you different skills, they can encourage your actions and inform your decisions, but the most important thing they can hand you is the confidence to do all of the above.

That confidence shows in the fact that, despite his own medical issues, at age 86, he still makes sure that we are OK, that we are as happy as we can be, that we don’t give up even though that would be an easy answer.

When my family took him to the Mid-Atlantic WWII Airshow in Reading, PA a few weeks ago, that confidence was in full bloom. It showed in his face as he saw the planes,and in the planes he saw his past and his abilities back in full bloom again. It showed in his easy and excited conversation with the other WWII veterans he talked with. It showed in how, despite 90 degree heat on an airport tarmac, nothing could dull his love of seeing what he and others had accomplished for themselves and all of us, and it showed every time some wonderful stranger came up to him and thanked him for his service. That simple act of kindness reinforced his confidence, and extended down the family line.

A few of my friends who I’ve known for the last three decades in the video business have kind of forgotten about me. some of my ex-co-workers and bosses are now out of sight. Many new friends have come along to bolster my spirits and recharge my determination.

However, the first thing that I see in all of those who have stayed with me is that they also share some trait with my Dad, and those traits make them wonderful friends and sorely needed support. However, they don’t quite become my dad, and that is a good thing, because to expect them to would be unfair to them.

The cliche is to put your Dad on a pedestal. Trust me, that would be sorely insufficient.

To my dad, to my brothers and brother-in-law, and to all the Dad’s out there, remember that today and tomorrow, we need your confidence. Then we can continue to strive to be as mirror of you and your hearts.

Thanks, Pop.


Below is my original Father’s Day Blog Post from last year.


Happy Father’s Day to everyone’s dad, but especially to my own Dad, Richard.
We are roomies, along with my bro, Tommy. My dad was born in 1923, and has been in love all of his life with my Mom (who passed in 1994). He has five sons, one daughter, and a slew of grandkids, nephews, nieces, and greatgrandkids, along with many honorary family members that were are close as his own kin.
My dad has always been the solid, dependable worker, the go to guy, the reliability surrounding any workplace he is in, the person people tend to know deep down is the reason it all works, though many times, will deny it. My dad still always plugs on, and does it with great love and humor.
Yep, plenty of hard times, but plenty of amazing successes.
Look at me.
He still keeps close to his family, both here in Philly and elsewhere, and is the first at church for wedding or funeral, for a family event, for just a nice afternoon with friends and relatives. He isn’t first because he has to be, he is first because he feels it shows the proper respect that everyone deserves. We will be out the door for a 9 AM event that is a half hour away by 7 AM.
He loves his Phillies (yells at Charlie Manuel all the time) and always has. He loves all things Disney and family films, and in recent years, has become quite the woman, being a sucker for all the movies on Lifetime, Disney Channel, TCM. I tailor my DVD library to make sure there is always something for him to watch.
He loves his music, and even though my mother was the amazing singer in the family, my dad was pretty amazing at music himself. Much of my music loves are formed by what we listened to in the car and in the home. He is a huge fan of Andre Rieu and 40’s music, as well as traditional country. However, if any of the kids and grandkids want to sing and perform death metal, Dad will be front and center cheering them on, bitching all the way, not meanly, simply because we expect and love it.
His favorite film is SLEEPLESS IN SEATTLE, I think because it reminds him of my mom. He cries every time he watches it, but he watches it straight through.
There is so much more, but in the end, he is our dad, and that is our blessing.
I am sure that is it so for many of you, but the cliche rings true for my dad. You should be so lucky as to have one like him.
Maybe the Phillies will win, because Charlie Manuel would never disappoint you on your day, Dad.

4 comments on “Father’s Day Salute, to mine and yours…(updated for my dad’s 87th Birthday)

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