PLEASE NOTE: This blog contains adult subjects and content, and because of Google/Blogger's recent nonsense, I HAVE MOVED TO WORDPRESS. For my enlightened friends who wish to visit me in my new home, it's Please bookmark it!

The rest of you? Please take your judge-y selves somewhere more wholesome, like here:

Go on.... shoo!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Father's Day

Hope everyone who celebrates it has had a good one. My own father has been very much on my mind this weekend; not only because of Father's Day today, but yesterday would have been his birthday as well.

Each year, I try to come up with some sort of random anecdote about him. I think by now, I've used up my best ones, but I can usually remember something or another.

When Dad was younger, he was larger than life, kind of arrogant, loved to pontificate and overstate. In his later years, however, he grew much more understated and didn't like talking about himself at all. He certainly didn't like discussing any health problems. So I was pretty much left in the dark as far as any of his issues were concerned.

In May 1995 during one of our dinners out, he casually mentioned that he was "having a little bit of work done." The way he tossed it off almost as an afterthought, I figured perhaps it was something elective and minor. Not quite -- turned out it was triple-bypass heart surgery. If he was concerned, he didn't let on to me. Aside from telling me the date and the hospital, he refused to share any details with me. I knew very little about open-heart surgery and what it entailed.

The following month, he had the procedure. He came through it beautifully, was out of Intensive Care in record time and back in a regular room. I went to visit him, bringing flowers, and was pleased to see how alert he was, sitting up and struggling with a rather tough piece of meat, talking with his visitors. Again, he told me nothing of the care he'd receive once he left the hospital, just said not to worry, it was all handled.

Part of me was relieved, but I was curious and concerned nonetheless. C'mon, Dad. I'm a big girl. You can tell me what's going on with you.

Once he was back home, we talked regularly and when he was ready to go out to eat again, he had me come over to pick him up. He seemed like his old self, maybe a little thinner, and I took him to one of his favorite places, The Daily Grill. He still didn't tell me any details. I thought perhaps during dinner, I'd ask him, see if I could get him to open up a little.

I ordered the double breast of garlic-broiled chicken, and was quite surprised when my plate came. I'd expected two small fillets, but got an enormous butterflied portion of chicken that filled the plate, the two breasts still anchored by the breastbone. There was no way I could eat all that, so I figured OK, I'll eat half and take the other half home. I picked up the large serrated knife they'd provided and sawed heartily through the chicken, crunching down the length of the breastbone.

My father watched me carve away as he pierced the crust of his chicken pot pie, letting the steam escape. After I was done, I picked up my fork and speared a bite of chicken. "So, Dad," I said, as casually as if I were asking about the weather, "what exactly did they do to you?"

Dad nonchalantly took a bite of his food, took a beat and then replied, "Pretty much what you just did to that chicken."

He always did have spectacular timing. I tossed my fork and knife onto my plate, pretending I'd lost my appetite. Well, I'd asked.

Nearly three years later, he made light of his physical condition once again. When his kidneys failed, he joked about having a new part-time job, three days a week. The job? Going for dialysis. Unfortunately, his humor wasn't enough to get him through this time.

Miss you, Dad. Love you always and forever.


  1. Hi Erica, This was VERY touching, tear's came to my eye's i wish i could give you a big hug :-( From what i know about your dad from you, i think your alot like him you have his humor and wit and of course his good look's,I know if he could see you now he would be so proud of you cause i sure am :-) I thought about my grandfather today he has been gone 7 year's this past January and i miss him very much i alway's gave him something for father's day :-) I LOVE YOU MY ERICA YOUR THE BEST big hug's from your naughty girl Jade xoxo

  2. Jade -- it is hard losing parents/grandparents, but at least we do have memories. :-)

  3. Erica, you've obviously developed your own style and voice, but you are also most definitely a chip off the ol' block.

    I've always loved reading these bits, and have been very grateful that the two of you were able to share some loving daddy-daughter time, so that the last memories are good ones.

    I also know you'd crack the Ol' Block up, and that he'd be very, very proud. Thank you for this lovely piece!

  4. Dave -- thank you. That means a lot to me.

    Hope YOU had a great Dad's day, dearest Wolfie.

  5. Big Hug Erica. Great story of your dad.
    PS Filming of the Dark Shadows movie with Johnny Depp has started in London.

  6. Yes Erica, this was a very touching story and one I can semi-relate to. My own father had a quad bypass in January following 2 heart attacks. Unlike you, having grown up with a mother who was a cardiac nurse on the open heart unit of a large hospital, I knew painfully well during his time in surgery and after exactly what it all entailed.

    It's great that you conjure up anecdotes about the man who was so important in your life. :)


  7. I love a good story that is well told. You are a talented narrator. Thank you!!

  8. joey -- thanks! You know, I like Johnny Depp and think he's a great actor (and easy on the eyes, too). But there is only one Dark Shadows, frozen in its own time, and one Barnabas Collins, for me.

    Sarah -- oyy. I hope he's OK!

    EL -- (beaming) Thank you.

  9. Beautiful story Eric, about your wonderful Dad. I wish myself, that I knew my father better. Like your's he never let on much about his problems, yet I knew her had some. Yes, during the World War 11 years, he spent some time in a concentration camp. Never spoke to me about those terrible years. Yes, I loved him, because he saved my life, and the rest of our family as well. And I regret that I did not know get to know him better. Because he was always a kind and gentle man. Yes, there are times when I still do cry, regretting this. Yes, my dad was a good one, and in my mind, will always remain so.

  10. Six -- I'm sorry your dad had to endure that horror. :-(

  11. Erica,

    I really related to this post and it was so well written. I think you have a gift and your dad probably gave you some of his talents.

    My dad was 92 when he died. I had the power of attorney for health care so I had to make the decision to stop everything. He, too, died of kidney failure and an illius brought on by a fall that caused a gash in his head. We brought him home and he died peacefully. It was what he wanted. I wish I could have known him better as he was one that didn't talk much about how he was feeling. He was a gentle man who wanted things done his way. LOL I miss him.

  12. Bobbie Jo -- wow, 92. That is one heck of a life. Coincidentally, my dad would have been 92 this past Saturday.

    I am a firm believer of allowing people to exit life on their terms... glad it was peaceful for him.

  13. And what a part-time job dialysis is, takes a lot of time and energy out of them. My dad has been going through that for the last several years. So glad you have good memories to look back on, your dad sounds like he was a great man.

  14. Lea -- several years?? Poor guy. My dad started dialysis in February and was gone by May... it was just too much for him. :-(