He is 59.
This is the 59th photo I have of him. With his parents, and I think it says July ’69, so he would have been 16 years old.
When I was 16 he tried to teach me to drive a stick. It didn’t work and he pawned me off on mom. He did, however, get me a car. And admonished me to keep it CLEAN…ALWAYS. And to never let the fuel gauge go below 1/4 tank. And keep sandbags in the trunk in winter (it was rear-wheel drive). And he taught me to change my own oil and how to change a flat tire. I’ve never done these things, but I believe that if I HAD to, I could do it. Because he made me learn, even though I didn’t want to. He taught me that.
He is still the one I go to when something is wrong. Tell me how to fix it. Tell me how to do it. He’s the most practical person I know and, as smart as I know I am, I’m still amazed that he just knows so very much. He can fix anything and if he doesn’t know how, he will figure it out. I get that from him. I always believe I can figure it out, he taught me that by example.
My knowledge of oldies music is off the charts for someone my age. That came from him. He loves music and he shared that love with me. Many of the songs I like are because they remind me of him. I know, without a doubt that 1968 is the year that EVERYTHING happened. My whole family knows. He taught us all.
He is one of my favorite trivia buddies. He loves terrible movies that no one else will even watch. He likes Bones, but probably not for the same reasons I do. He’s my favorite person to argue with; I get my stubbornness from him. He doesn’t always understand me, but he loves me anyway.
He’s my dad. Today is his birthday.
Happy Birthday, Dad! I love you.