Tag Archives: father

How Reasonable…

My dad had many sayings, including: “Blessed are the big wheels, for they will go around in circles” and “Don’t confuse me with facts when my mind is made up.”  The reasoning chart below seems to sum up both of those sayings:



Grandparents – Old People Trying To Get Into Heaven

I didn’t realize that Bill Cosby and I were brothers.  We must be… we had to have had the same parents.  Did you? (This is for Mssc54). 

Hopefully this will help you ease into your weekend:

Deja Vu with a Twist (of Sons)

“Do you believe in Deja vu?” – Didn’t you just ask me that?”  This is one of my favorite exchanges from my favorite movie: Groundhog day.

I experienced deja vu with a slight twist last night.

My 12 year old son and I went to Magic Mountain (here in SoCal) for a private party (my university rents the park one night each year for current students, alumni, friends, and etc. to mix).  One of the good things about going each year is that it is cheap (our tickets were $25) and the lines are short – really short – as in non-existant (attendance is about a quarter of a normal operating day).  We not only did not wait in line, but following several rides we were asked if we wanted to ride again.

About two hours into the evening, while driving the bumper cars, I was overwhelmed with this sense of deja vu – with a twist. 

(As background) On my 13th birthday, my dad took me to Magic Mountain (about a month after it opened).  There were few rides and (it seemed) fewer people, so on several rides we were asked if we wanted to ride again.  The bumper cars were our favorite ride of the day.

(Back to last night) It hit me while I was chasing my son around in the bumper cars (same location since opening day) as I saw him glance back at me with an absolute look of joy on his face… and I saw me – more than 35 years before as my dad chased me around in the same bumper cars, laughing like mad.

How great is that?

Bumper Cars at Magic Mountain

Bumper Cars at Magic Mountain

Another Favorite Ride of My Dad, My Son, and Me.

Another Favorite Ride of My Dad, My Son, and Me.

Who I want to Become and Another “Bucket Lister”

I happened across Doug, another “bucket lister” http://douggeivett.wordpress.com/2008/07/24/my-bucket-list/ and found his post interesting.  He responed to yesterday’s post with this thought:

There are several ways to go about this business of working on a bucket list. One is simply to make a list of things I feel especially compelled to do before “kicking the bucket,” and tick them off as each is done. But it could be useful to ask why those particular things are on my list. What does my list say about me? And is that the kind of person I want to be when I’ve finished my business here on earth? An alternative is to think strictly in terms of what sort of person I wish to become, then get busy becoming that sort of person. But how do you do that?

Good questions.

As I think about the kind of person I (still) hope to be, I am struck by the words of Michelangelo when he was asked how he could turn a block of stone into a beautiful angelic statue.  He responded with something to this effect: “I see the angel inside the block of stone and remove everything that doesn’t belong.”  That is (more or less) what my list has become for me – a vision of who I want to become and a chipping away of what doesn’t belong. 

It became much easier after my kids were born.  I wanted to be the kind of person who could be patient with them as they grew up and developed into the kind of people who could be patient with me as I grew old.

Father Involvement – Cheerleader

This made me smile:

Thank you to Airtightnoodle http://airtightnoodle.wordpress.com/ for directing me to it.

The Good Father

One of my goals, if I became a father, was to be a good father.  We waited fourteen years to have kids (my wife says we had to wait for me to grow up – but had to quit waiting or we would never have had kids).

I didn’t really define what a good father was, except that I knew I had to somehow influence my kids to be readers.  At any rate, my wife and I committed to reading with our kids from the womb until they turned (about) 10.  Although we mixed it up a bit, for the most part I read with our son and she read with our daughter.

My son and I read every night.  There were times (when he was around 3-4) that he would say, “Dad, can we not read tonight?”  And my answer was always, “This is what we do.”  Well, I started my doctorate when he was about six and would work all day Friday as a principal, then drive about an hour and a half to grad school and attend classes.  I would get home on Friday nights at about 11:30pm and he would be waiting on the stairs with a book.  One Friday night I came home really tired and looked at my son and said, “Dude, I’m really tired.  Let’s not read tonight.”  His response?  You guessed it – “But dad, this is what we do.”

Here are some of our favorite books we read together during that time:

The Hardy Boys series (the whole set in one year), The Chronicles of Narnia series, The Space Trilogy, the Lemony Snicket series,  the Great Illustrated Books series, the Accidental Detectives series, and several individual books like Maniac McGee and Tuck Everlasting (these are the books and series that my son says hold special memories for him).

He decided he was ready to read on his own not too long after he turned 10 and started with the Star Wars series, then moved on to the Redwall series.  I miss reading together, but am thrilled that he has become such a voracious reader.  He has even written a couple of his own books – while he was 11.

I know there is more to being a good father than reading together, but I also hope this was at least a start.