Sunday, June 15, 2008

Dear Dad

A million and a half years ago, you used to take me to your store on Sunday afternoons. I probably complained a bit, but it was nifty being the only one of the neighborhood kids who got free roam of an empty paint store. Wallpaper rolls make cool swords.

A million years ago, we would walk home from church on Sunday afternoons, and you taught me to run and click my heels. I never could get as high as you. And I suspect that my ankles made contact more often than my heels.

A half million years ago, you would bug me to make my bed in the mornings. One Sunday I forgot and you had me make it three times after church. You stripped it each time and then told me to go make it again. When I was done, I short sheeted your bed. You never said a thing, and I don't recall you ever saying anything about my bed after that. Suspiciously, the door to my room would be closed more often than not, though. Anyway, thanks for receiving as good as you gave. No hard feelings?

A quarter million years ago you dropped me off at college, and in the awkward goodbye on the dormitory steps, you gave me a hug and handed me some money and told me to be good. I went up to my room eager to embrace my new independence, but worried about being more on my own than ever before. I was too old for wallpaper swords and hadn't the courage for heel clicking on campus. No one cared if I made my bed anymore, or to close my door so they wouldn't have to look at the mess. But then your letters started to arrive, and I knew that no matter how independent I became, I'd always have roots.

Happy Father's Day.

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