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Let me tell you a thing about my DAD



  • EvigilantEvigilant VARegistered User regular
    My mother has had a really rough and depressing upbringing all the way up until she met my father whom took her away from all of that, so I'll talk about my dad instead, whom I consider to be my role model. I cherish the man so much that if I could be just half the man he is then I did alright in life.

    My father is an incredibly kind hearted and stubborn man. He was in the Marine Corps for 14 years before being medically separated for refusing to have an operation to repair his torn shoulder because he didn't like the odds. Today, it's still below a 50% guarantee that they can repair his shoulder and he both still refuses to have the operation and still experiences pain in his shoulder and arm. He helps out random strangers, volunteers at a homeless shelter, and will talk the ear off of anyone he meets if they're willing to listen.

    I remember when he was sent to Okinawa for a year long duty. When he came home, he had a present for me, the original Optimus Prime toy and a Macross VF-1 Valkyrie. I loved the ever living shit out of these and it fostered a love of robots, toys, and both Transformers and Macross. When he was deployed during Gulf War I: the original series, it was right on Christmas day: he had to leave early that morning, at like 4-5am. He was extremely displeased he couldn't spend Christmas with us and so we tried to do as much as we could before he had to leave.

    Growing up, I used to be absolutely terrified of my father. Terrified. I've never seen my Father scream or yell or get overly angry and aggressive. I didn't want to be left alone in his company because I was afraid of him, and this is because he was the disciplinarian. When he needed to punish me for one of the god awful things I did, he would have this look of disappointment in his face, and he wouldn't scream or yell, he'd just say in a commanding tone, "go to my room, go to my closet, and get one of my belts to spank you with" and if I got the belt wrong, he'd tell me "no, this isn't right. You know what I'm looking for, go back and get another because you don't want me to pick one out." He believes in hard work before play, and so him and I would do a lot of chores and duties around the house and yard before I could relax. When he thought I was old enough, he told me to get 2 beers from the fridge and then gave me one of them. I thought it was a trick, so I refused to drink it, but he explained how when he was growing up, he lived on a farm, and his dad would do the same thing and give him one beer after a hard days work.

    When he and my mother had to stay late at work, he'd call the base gate guards to check up on us (since we lived right across the street from the gate). On the holidays, he'd have me run out a plate of food to those Marines and wish them well.

    We grew up pretty poor and at times my parents had difficulty putting food on the table. It's still a sore spot for my Dad because he feels like he couldn't provide for his family and that we were suffering. I remember the seeing the look of embarrassment when we had to put back a huge thing of groceries because the place didn't accept checks, and they didn't have cash on hand. The floor is lava/the ocean game? Yea, my sister and I played the shit out of that. One day, while I was walking home from school, he surprised us by picking up the first Nintendo system. My mother and sister didn't really care much for it, but my Dad and I stayed up for as long as a young me could take, playing Mario and duck hunt. We where hooked, we where glued to it but I never knew until years later that my parents gave up going on a vacation for us because my dad convinced my mother that the Nintendo was something the family could play together, rather than just a weekend away for themselves.

    He was medically discharged from the USMC in the 90's, became a federal employee and went back to work at his same job, in the same office, around the same co-workers, for more pay. He started going to night school as well, so he'd get up early in the morning then stay up till late in the evening, and repeat this process for 3 years. In the late 90's he was RIF'd (reduction in force) from his job and again we were left struggling. He applied for and got accepted for a job in DC with a Federal Agency and so we moved out to VA.

    When I was in highschool, my parents took care of friends my sister and I had. These friends were going through hard times so they let them live with us because at least then, they could guarantee they would be fed, have a bed, a roof, clothes, could still go to school, and that they'd be safe. My friends whom my parents have done this for, my parents consider their extended children and they consider them as parents.

    When I was ready to go to college, I told my parents I didn't want them to pay a dime, because then we probably couldn't afford it, and that I was going into the military and since I was 17, I needed their permission and signatures. When my father found out, he asked which branch and I replied, "the Marine Corps, like you did". He smiled, he was happy that I wanted to join the military and that I wanted to join "his" Marine Corps, but he told me no. He didn't want me to follow in his footsteps and make the same mistakes he made and live the difficult life we had.

    "If you want to join the Marine Corps that's fine, but I'm not going to let you do it enlisted. You're old enough to remember what it was like growing up and as your father I want you to do better, to surpass me. I expect better of you."

    So we talked it out and looked at what else there was and he recommended that I join the Army, since "they pay more for school and it doesn't seem like you'll deploy as often, and then once your done with school and have your degree, if you still want to join the Marine Corps, do it as an Officer." (this was July 2001 and hindsight is a bitch). When I was getting ready to leave for my first deployment, one of the last things he told me was, "When and if you can call home, don't tell your mother about all the horrible things, she'll just worry. Talk about the shitty food, the hot weather and anything else, but leave out the horrible stuff. And don't be a hero, heroes die. Be smart and stay safe."

    As I've gotten older, now about to be 30 and him in his early 50's, we've bonded more and more. I could go on and on about my dad and awesome things he's done, but I figure this is too long already. The man is my hero; he is whom I not only want to be similar too but the bar I have to pass, and that bar is mighty high.

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  • rhylithrhylith Death Rabbits HoustonRegistered User regular
    Haven't talked to my dad or anyone on his side of the family in over 10 years.

    Rhylith - <Shambler Milk> Horde Chogall
  • LiiyaLiiya Registered User regular
    My dad is a short man with a smiley round face and a bald head.

    His mother ran out on him and his younger brother when he was in his very early teens, leaving their dad to raise two teenagers on a steel workers wage. He had long curly hair when met my mum and has tattoos he did himself in Indian ink when he was fifteen.

    My parents were not rich but my dad was curious about how things worked and started as a telly engineer and then was fascinated by the first computers. He'd spend hours taking them apart and putting them back together. He worked very hard and did exams through work and has become at network engineer and I am so proud of him.

    When I was little dad would always play mechano with us and make opetating lifts for my Barbies up tables. We'd play with trains together, catch tadpoles, collect blackberries and read to me. My dad knows everything and because he wasn't that into bedtime stories he'd let me ask three questions about how stuff worked before I went to sleep, like "how does electricity work?" And he always knew.

    I was a brat as a teenager and he irritated me because we're so alike. We would wind each other up and didn't get along, we do now though.

    Moving out made me closer to my dad, we talk more about things and while we dont have tons in common we talk about our work and nature and science and that sort of thing we both find interesting. I'm still impressed by how much he knows, I think I got my love of learning about nature from him.

    His jokes are rubbish but he makes me laugh. Hes pretty great.

    JayKaosYukiraEvigilantAntimatterPsykomaShortyThe BetgirlSlacker71WheatBun01JunpeiBeastehCelloSkeithDevlin_DragonusA Dabble Of TheloniusIloveslimesThat Dave FellaWhytherWuShockAngelinaTofystedethVegemyteAnialos
  • ShortyShorty touching the meat Intergalactic Cool CourtRegistered User regular
    what is it with dads and bad jokes

    we used to tell my dad he should write his jokes in to tales from the crypt

  • DaebunzDaebunz Registered User regular
    edited August 2013
    My dad is pretty much just like me just older. We like almost exactly the same stuff.

    I don't really have an awesome dad story but I am thankful to have a dad that respected my intelligence as a kid enough to let me play mortal kombat who also wanted to practice with me. In retrospect it means a lot

    and even though he lives on the other side of the country right now he supports all my dumb endeavors in makin' vidya gaems and doing something with my life

    edit: actually no I do have one story: when the sequel to Champions of Norrath came out for ps2 (Champions: Return to Arms), we totally played that till 6am the following day together

    Daebunz on
  • SnowbeatSnowbeat i need something to kick this thing's ass over the lineRegistered User regular
    i don't think about my dad much

  • POKÉMON MASTER WT SHERMANPOKÉMON MASTER WT SHERMAN i can make this march and i will make georgia howlRegistered User regular
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  • Sara LynnSara Lynn I can handle myself. Registered User regular
    I haven't spoken to my father in almost 10 years. He's not very nice.

  • MetalbourneMetalbourne Inside a cluster b personalityRegistered User regular
    At one time I thought my dad was the greatest guy in the world. Stern, protective, caring, supportive.

    Looking back I realized he was a means to an end. He had married my mom, an abusive woman with a severe learning disability and immediately took a back seat. He stood by and watched while his wife beat us mercilessly throughout our lives. His job was to work, and work he did, often coming home to his wife's cold shoulder when he didn't get enough overtime at his almost minimum wage job. Finally, when the last of the kids moved out, she turned on him. The marriage ended after 26 years when she finally hit him with an entire mug of coffee. He left her the house, took the dog and his truck and left.

    Things were looking up for a while, there. He'd met another nasty shrew of a woman while I was in the military. She was a different kind of nasty shrew, though. The kind who was dead set in her beliefs, the kind who knew there was a right way and a wrong way to do everything, and would not let the wrong way be knowingly done. Only difference between her and my mom was that her beliefs all centered around kindness and doing unto others. She had breast cancer and had lost one breast already. They found a tumor in the other one and right after that it spread throughout her body and she died.

    It seemed like a good reason to feel sorry for my dad, and for a while I did, but by this time I was getting old enough to realize that the world around you wasn't solely responsible for your lot in life. He's the one who married my mom, knowing full well what kind of person she was. He didn't raise a hand or even his voice to protect his kids from being beaten and abused. He didn't give a shit and if he did he was too big of a coward to do anything.

    So as my separation date for the military drew near, my dad and I would talk on the phone. Each time I called he would be more drunk and more incoherent. I told him several times about the job I had lined up for when I got out and how they were insistent on my completing school. My dad asked me to move back home with him and like an idiot I did. I turned down a job that all but required me to be in school at the same time to move back in with my dad.

    I flew him out to help me move. I had two cars and needed someone to drive the cavalier while I drove the El Camino. Something was wrong as soon as I met him at the airport. He was several inches shorter than I remember him. He'd lost weight. He couldn't read the gauges on the dashboard. And then after I turned in the keys to my apartment and set out to California, he told me that he was in a relationship with an abusive alcoholic who's son was just released from prison. Funny you would tell me that right after I had no choice but to go through with it. "Well I didn't want you to change your mind,"

    My second great regret was not breaking his his nose right there.

    As soon as I got there, I hopped into the cavalier and took off without a plan of action. I tell people that I gave my dad the El Camino right after I got out of the military because the truth is so embarrassing. I left knowing that I wouldn't be able to go back and get that car. No clue what's happened to it since then. Slightly less worried about what's happened to him though.

  • ZuelZuel Registered User regular
    Hunter wrote: »
    My dad is basically Red from That 70's Show, except he's a Vietnam veteran instead of the Korean War.

    Yeah I have one of these too

  • JarsJars Registered User regular
    by all accounts my father was a great man

    it's a shame I never got to meet him

  • SeriouslySeriously Registered User regular
    my dad was not a very good dad-to-a-child but he is a pretty good dad-to-an-adult/"adult"/???

    growing up he was never particularly effusive with attention or affection

    lead in the school play eh

    hey neat; you can get yourself there right? I think I might have a nap scheduled for

    ...let me see here...

    yep, every single showing of that

    but when things got bad he stayed when he could have left, and later he helped put me through school

    I was super angry at him for a lot of years for various things like the italicized, but bottom line he tried to do right be me and my mom, my needs were always met, and he got me out of bumblefuck georgia

    although it was fantastically relieving to be validated on the fact that the man is really super fucking difficult to talk to

    apparently he learned all he knows about making conversation from interrogating prisoners



    he's not really big on answering questions and possibly small to medium on making things up?

    anyways we don't have a close relationship but we do care about each other

  • HunteraHuntera Rude Boy Registered User regular
    My Dad is a man who I'd say wouldn't stand out in a crowd, quite possibly he'd be a guy most suited to blend in, and for most of my life I considered the thought he was actually a robot-the man was near emotionless in my tiny child eyes; I never heard him swear, yell, or even more than a small giggle for almost 16 years of my life.

    Maybe that's a thing that happens when you're the 6th of 11 growing up in an 1,100 square foot house where the punishment was always "Wait until your father gets home," but gets home meant he'd get in at midnight or later because he worked 3 jobs to feed what was 7 or 8 kids at a time, but maybe that's just where he got how he wanted to see me and my siblings treated

    I've never been left wanting, my dad has always thought about us before himself, even now when I leave for my first year at university this Saturday I know he won't let the debit card he had me get run out, there'll be money there when I might've used it a little too frivolously as much as I'd like him to be stricter on that; but hell my going to a university to live on campus is even more emblematic of that since he's made sure my four years are paid for, and he's the one who wanted me to live on campus when I kept saying "We live 20 minutes from the place, Dad, it's a waste of money," and he'd reply almost every time with "The money isn't important"

    I've thought for a long time I'd been turning into my dad, since my mom and him separated what is probably 11 years ago now, that just living with him has naturally calmed me down from the angry bully I was when I was real little, and admittedly I might be better off with my pushy mother who would've kept goading me forward and to study harder and to be better than I am and who people think I should be, but with my Dad there's always been this sense of safety and that yeah he might not like that I spend all my time on my computer, or that I'd rather keep quiet and to myself when he's around but I don't think he's ever judged me for it and really I can't ask for something better.

    So yeah thanks Dad, I know you'll probably never see this but I hope I don't need to, that you know I love ya without me having to type it out like this.

    R0land1188PsykomaEvigilantSkeithSlacker71A Dabble Of TheloniusAngelinaAnialos
  • WuShockWuShock Lawful Good South BrownbackistanRegistered User regular
    My father was born to a poor farming family near the now-defunct town of Broughton, KS. He's the second of two kids, both boys. He was always the more responsible of the two. So-so grades in high school, but he was very hard worker.

    My Grandma, God rest her soul, was an athlete and pushed him. As a result, Dad was one of the top wrestlers in the state in high school, and actually got a scholarship offer to play lineman for Fort Hays State. He turned the scholarship down, because on his official visit he was told that he didn't have to worry about going to class or taking tests and he thought, "then why in the hell would I want to come here?" He didn't resent playing the sports, I don't think, but he definitely resented the pressure he'd been put under.

    Thankfully, he took his experiences and taught me maybe the most valuable parenting lesson I could get: You don't have to make the same mistakes your parents did.

    When my brother and I were growing up, he didn't push us to play sports at all. In fact, he was often hesitant when we said we wanted to play something. What he pushed us on was keeping our grades up.

    I don't remember him ever laying a hand on either of us in anger. The few times I was spanked, it was always Mom. The man is 6'3" and has been north of 300 lbs as long as I've known him, and it's not a flabby 300 lbs, and he would do little things to remind us of his strength. As a result, he never had to use it on either of us.

    He's never liked working for anybody else, he would much rather be his own boss, which he has been for most of my life. He's got most of the skillset of @Shorty 's dad. In my lifetime he ran an appliance store, fixed said appliances, was a truck driver, and now (at age 70) clears trees out of pastures for people.

    He and Mom had a rough spot when I was in high school. He actually slept in a tiny little house down by my Grandpa's garden. He didn't leave, and they worked it out. They built a new house on the spot where that tiny little house was. They're coming up on 50 years together.

    I know for the longest time he thought I was lazy. I just didn't do the things he did. He was a gearhead, he liked the outdoors. I was always writing stuff and playing video games. Maybe I didn't have the greatest work ethic back then. He never rode me for any of it, even when I worked for him in high school. He was gone an awful lot when I was young, driving the truck to make ends meet, and we never really saw eye to eye on a lot of things. He tried though. He got into radio-controlled cars because he thought we could build them together, but when we'd go to the hobby store to get parts, I was far more interested in the D&D books.

    One of my proudest moments was when he came down to help clear the tree limbs from around my house after a particularly bad ice storm (and when I say 'limbs' I'm talking branches that were over a foot in diameter at the root). He was cutting up the limbs with his chainsaw and I was hauling the pieces out to the curb. It was well below freezing outside (hard as hell to get the chainsaw started) and he had gone in to rest and have some coffee and I just kept plugging away hauling wood. After he left that evening, my wife told me that he commented on how hard I was working, and that it surprised him. I've been happy to surprise him a few more times since.

    He had lung cancer a few years ago. They removed half of one of his lungs. When a spot came back a year later, he had to do some radiation therapy. He's been clean since, and he's still working.

    The man doesn't lie. He doesn't drink to excess, and I've never seen him lift a finger in anger. He's grumpy, and he sometimes falls back on the grumblings of a person raised in the '50's, but only rarely and more out of training than any actual racism. He's far more faithful to people than they are to him, and he's certainly been more generous to others than he would ever ask for let alone expect. He doesn't laugh unless it's genuine, and when he does it's like sunshine bursting into the room. He's fantastic at card games, especially Pitch. He has a love for old european sports cars. At one point or another he's owned an MGA, an MGB, and a Triumph Spitfire. I just found out last weekend that when he got the MGA, he could have gotten a Porsche 911 for the same price, and he didn't because the MGA had fewer miles on it.

    He did his best to be a father, not just to me and my brother, but to my two older cousins, and the older I get, the more I appreciate him.

    Twixxo wrote:
    WuShock is the best
    He is the very bestest
    I wish I was him


    The BetgirlR0land1188PsykomaEvigilantSkeithA Dabble Of TheloniusIloveslimesAngelinaVegemyteAnialos
  • #pipe#pipe Cocky Stride, Musky odours Pope of Chili TownRegistered User regular
    My dad is a good dude.
    He is super interested in being everybody's friend and engaging anyone in conversation, he's quick to joke and make people feel comfortable.

    Sometimes he has a hard time expressing himself, and tends to not mention something that could easily be fixed/changed until it's made him really upset. When he was the owner and operator of a small business, employing myself and my 2 older brothers, he would often expect things of us, without ever really telling us, and when we didn't do them, he'd think it was because we were lazy or disrespectful. Luckily he's never had a problem talking to my mother, and she's a great mediator and good at understanding how to approach all of the parties involved to resolve any problems.

    My brothers have now taken over the daily operation of the business and my dad is semi retired and he's a lot happier and healthier. When he's working, he's either stressed that there's too much work, or stressed that there's not enough work. I've seen him shift from one to the other within an hour.

    He's amazing with my nephews and has always been good to my mum. He did a great job of making me curious about the world and about a wide range of things, he always encouraged my artistic endeavors and wanted me to be happy. My mum went to school to get a teaching degree while my brothers and I were in school, so there were a few years when he was the sole income, but he never let things get on top of him and he never stopped being fun and present and supportive of his boys. I'm really proud that he's my dad and I hope I do as good a job as he did.

    WuShockThe BetgirlEvigilantShortySkeithDevlin_DragonusA Dabble Of TheloniusIloveslimes
  • JarsJars Registered User regular
    edited August 2013
    My father was one of those people who could never sit still. my grandfather told me at one point he had to make him quit one of the three jobs he had while he was in high school. He excelled in athletics and held swimming records at high school and college. When he graduated college he went on to the air force academy and became a fighter pilot. It's strange, to me that was never important but it's something that a lot of people dream about doing. I guess it's fitting that he was able to accomplish it.

    When I was 3 something in his A-10 malfunctioned. He could have ejected but his plane would have gone down in a populated area. He was 29. It's a shame I ended up nothing like him because the world could use more people like that. To me he's a stranger. I don't know his face, his voice, his personality. All I have is what other people have told me.

    Jars on
  • mullymully Registered User regular
    edited August 2013
    my dad.............?

    my mom................

    mully on
  • ShortyShorty touching the meat Intergalactic Cool CourtRegistered User regular
    damn, jars

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  • FyndirFyndir Registered User regular
    I would like to think I'm as good/cool a person as my dad.

    but I just can't grow a beard as nice as his.


  • BucketmanBucketman Call me SkraggRegistered User regular
    I like to think I'm a hard worker, and thats because of my dad. I know my apprication of science is from my dad, while he never had the chance to pursue it he would often tell me stories about how in high school he actually learned the school computer with the punch cards and everything, and I know that my love of plants/animals is because of him.

    I just hope I do better at the whole being married thing them him

  • #pipe#pipe Cocky Stride, Musky odours Pope of Chili TownRegistered User regular
    Fyndir wrote: »
    I would like to think I'm as good/cool a person as my dad.

    but I just can't grow a beard as nice as his.


    Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that my dad has rocked a righteous mustache for as long as he's known my mother, which is like 30 something years now.

    Last year for Movember, my brother and I tried to convince him to shave it clean and start again and he looked like doing so would make him rupture at the seams.

  • MalReynoldsMalReynolds The Hunter S Thompson of incredibly mild medicines Registered User regular
    I used to not like my Dad very much; he carried a burning anger in him that I never understood, or couldn't, and that's saying something. Growing up, I was the angriest person I knew, prone to shouting fits, lying down on the floor, and frequent crying. Oh, shit, did I cry. Like, every day. If I made it through a day without tears flowing down my ruddy face, God would have shown up to shake my hand.

    My father used to have a routine; come home from work, play computer games. Civil War Generals 2, mainly; he'd replay the same battles over and over, then, dinner. Then, more computer games. Talking to him when he had his headphones in was a no-no. He'd get an annoyed tone to his voice and curtly answer questions. After 7, he'd come out to the living room, have a Jack and Coke, eat some beef log and cheese, and watch The History Channel in silence. Or, he'd read. The only time I remember him talking to me during these sessions was when I was 10; I had just bought The Sims, and was playing it late into the night. He walked over, smelling like Dad - all Dads smell the same, that musky father smell - and said, "Huh. That looks neat."

    He was quick to shout; my grandmother would be in charge of getting me ready for school in the morning while he and my mother were at work, and my grandmother would routinely hide my items. It should be noted that my grandmother is fucknuts and would do this for no other reason than she could. In retrospect, I should have realized this a lot sooner, but I always just thought I was forgetful about where I would leave my shoes. She'd also chide me, telling me if I didn't go to school, the Truancy Police would come and put me in jail. To a small child, the thought is terrifying. So I'd freak out. She'd tell my dad. He'd scream at me. Pull me out of bed at 5:00am to angrily ask why I was treating her that way.

    When I was fourteen, he and my mother had a date night planned. My brother and I cleaned the house, wanting to make it a nice surprise for when they got home, but they came back after having been gone only fifteen minutes. Mom went around turning all the lights off, and Dad sat us down; effective immediately, he'd be leaving. Staying on a friend's couch until he could sign a lease at an apartment. My brother and sisters freaked out, crying; I just sat there, running through all the information in my head, before simply muttering, "Yeah, it figures."

    I never saw him and my mother kiss, I never saw much affection between them at all. Not to say they fought constantly, but they never seemed very much in love.

    So, he moved out. About a week later, he found an apartment, and called me.

    "Hey, Michael," he said. Sadness in the voice. He didn't want to move out, he needed to.


    "Do you want to come see my new place?"

    I didn't. Well and truly, I didn't, but I was forced to by my mother. To spend a weekend there. She wanted to demonize him, to turn him into a pariah.

    I got to his apartment - he picked me up - and we walked in. It wasn't awful - basement, but nice, carpeted, cool. A sofa, some chairs, a TV. Computer in the corner. Guest room with king bed.

    He disappeared into the kitchen and walked back out, holding some bags. Inside one was Half-Life. Inside the other; chips, cheese dip, Skittles (my favorite candy, to this day), and movies.

    He smiled. We vegged out, watched Evolution. He let me have a sip of his beer, wanted to watch me play the computer game.

    It was a total sea change. He was a completely new person.

    He and I still regularly see each other. Now that I'm 26, we hang out about twice a month, go to bars, probably drink too much and hang out. He bought a PS3 to get back into gaming, so sometimes we'll just sit on his couch, in his house, while my step-mom paints, and play Call of Duty. Or I'll force him to watch some Parks and Rec. If you had asked me when I was 13 if I'd ever want to just chill, I'd wouldn't have even begun to know how to say no.

    The divorce was the best thing that happened to him and turned him from a Man to my Father.

    He's pretty great. And I make sure I tell him that regularly.

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  • ZonugalZonugal (He/Him) The Holiday Armadillo I'm Santa's representative for all the southern states. And Mexico!Registered User regular
    @Shorty, would you like to hear tales of my father?

  • Clint EastwoodClint Eastwood My baby's in there someplace She crawled right inRegistered User regular
  • ZonugalZonugal (He/Him) The Holiday Armadillo I'm Santa's representative for all the southern states. And Mexico!Registered User regular
    My dad is basically Tywin Lannister as played by Kyle MacLachlan.

  • Clint EastwoodClint Eastwood My baby's in there someplace She crawled right inRegistered User regular
    my dad was born a poor black child

  • BeastehBeasteh THAT WOULD NOT KILL DRACULARegistered User regular
    edited August 2013
    i know i go on a lot about how my dad gives me a hard time but hes had it much worse

    he married my mother when he was a junior seaman in the navy, he was 21 and she was 19

    3 years later she was dying of lymphoma, my dad was so stricken with grief something broke and he just sat watching sport on tv in her room in the hospice as she died

    (my little brother took his first steps just after she died, she had been holding on to see him do it)

    he had a very tough, strict upbringing by conservative scottish parents, he joined the navy in 1976 when he was 16 and has been there ever since

    i've never really been comfortable spending time with him even though he's my dad and he loves me (and i him), we are just so different personality wise

    he has a hard time showing emotions, he is short tempered and gets stressed easily

    i am the total opposite, i am laid back, easy to show emotion and rarely get annoyed

    Beasteh on
  • StericaSterica Yes Registered User, Moderator mod
    I have...conflicted opinions about my dad. I think some of it stems from his own childhood as a result of his horrible drunk of a dad, even though he would deny it. Today things are pretty good, and they kinda have to be since I'm renting a place my parents own. There is still the bigotry that has never seemed to die down.

  • DichotomyDichotomy Registered User regular
    edited August 2013
    things I know about my father:

    - his family came over from britain to canada when he was very young. other kids at school used to make fun of his accent, so he and his brother(s) would get even with them after school
    - I don't actually know how many siblings he has. he's mentioned a brother before but I know absolutely nothing about him and he has a sister who's an anglican priest (?) that I've met maybe three times in my entire life
    - he went to school for engineering. he ended up graduating with a philosophy degree. for as long as I've been alive, he's worked in banking, doing I'm not sure what. he's also mentioned working a thresher on a farm and working in a fibreglass factory, sweeping out a fibreglass oven or something
    - he had a previous marriage. I have a half-sister I met once whose name I don't even remember, and she had a baby whose name I am also unclear on
    - he and my mother lived together for a long time before finally they figured they might as well get married
    - he was in his 30s when my older brother was born, and he turned 40 the same year I was born
    - he used to draw pretty frequently. we have this framed portrait of some horses that I thought was a purchased thing but I learned recently that he drew it back in the 70s, he signed and dated it and everything
    - we have a backyard deck he's built, torn down, and rebuilt about fifteen different times in fifteen different ways. also a shed that he built, tore down and then rebuilt in another part of the backyard, and a gazebo that he built that got torn down by winter weather that he hasn't yet attempted to rebuild. also he's built pretty much every piece of furniture and shelving in the house and put down wood flooring throughout the house that's gotten pretty badly torn up so I don't think it's hardwood flooring, I'm pretty sure it's softwood flooring

    that's about it. I could probably get a full life story out of him if I just asked but by this point I find it more interesting to see what I can cobble together or infer out of tidbits dropped in conversation over a span of years

    Dichotomy on
  • CelloCello Registered User regular
    I was really lucky to get the parents that I did. My mom and dad were fantastic parents out of the desire to give us the childhood that they didn't get. My mom doesn't really talk about her past much, but my dad loves to tell stories.

    He's the oldest of several children, and so he can remember the days when his parents weren't alcoholics. He has a few great memories of that time - his grandmother was an amazing baker and would have "spoiled us silly", and his father was a chef at the Chateau Laurier. Apparently he was amazing in the kitchen and could carve awe-inspiring fruit animals. At some point though, his mother and father started drinking. They got poorer and poorer, and so my grandfather made the move from chef to a silver-tongued con-man.

    One story Dad likes to tell is that they'd get woken up in the middle of the night, only for his father to say "Shhhh... son, it's time to move." They'd ditch in the middle of the night to avoid paying rent. I think they got really good at moving.

    None of the kids really enjoyed living in that home after that point; his parents became drunken and abusive. The kids would bicker over who was adopted - "No, *I'm* the adopted one! You guys are related to them!" and basically had the run of the neighbourhood because of a total lack of authority. They'd park in front of the local bar and only come out every few hours to give the kids a bag of chips. Child Services were absolutely stupid back then too - they'd call to make appointments, which would give the parents time to clean themselves up and look respectable - only to get worse as soon as they left. Eventually, my dad moved out after coming home on his 15th birthday to his father stomping on his mother's head on the floor. He pushed him away, only to get hit and yelled at by his mother. He left that night and didn't go back. I think eventually they talked again and had some kind of familial bond, but it was pretty tenuous. I'm only guessing because I have a single memory of my grandfather in a hospital bed, when he gave me a stuffed raccoon around age 5.

    Dad never finished high school. He failed, then passed Grade 9 and failed, then passed Grade 10. He decided "good enough" and joined the Navy. I'll get to some of those stories later. Most of Dad's stories, in the Navy and out, involve drunken debauchery, street fighting against the French (because he lived in an area of town where there was nothing else to do, apparently), and going on so many more adventures than I ever will thanks to my need for self preservation.

    After leaving home he basically started trying to take up as many of the most manliest jobs or passtimes he could. Navy Seaman, oil rigger, ski patrol, Grand Mason of a Masonic Lodge, Shriner, member of the Scottish Rite, dog trainer (when he married my mom, they did a tour of North America going to dog shows and competing in obedience trials), and now he's a tradesman with his own company in one of the toughest trades there is.

    He met my mother at a party in a truly romantic way - a guy was bothering my mother, so my dad pushed him down the stairs. Ah, young love. Once they became parents, my dad calmed down a lot. He became a doting father, an inspiration to never give up, and he taught me to love working with my hands. My passion for creating things, for taking an idea and making it into something real - that came from him. Whether we were making a mechanical steamshovel for a science fair or, much later, brewing beer together, there was nothing like doing some kind of project with him. And I was proud of him for getting out of a family that was so hurtful that he was able to become a successful businessman and a fantastic father.

    He has a ton of amazing stories that I'll probably tell later. But in a nutshell, that's who my Dad is.

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  • nukanuka What are circles? Registered User regular
    I feel like I don't know my dad. He's a quiet man, and it isn't like he was gone all the time. He's impatient, stubborn, and can only focus on one thing at a time. He's a liberal person but doesn't care about politics. I think he might be sexist but I don't know. The jokes he makes are at the expense of others sometimes and it bothers me. He works on airplanes, and would bring my sister and I old blueprints for the 747 so we could color them in. As annoying and terrible as my mother can be, he still loves her and buys her flowers all the time. He always had a Riker style beard and mustache, and when I see his old ID card it's way too weird to see him with just a mustache. Thinking about this makes me a little sad because the last time he was sick he had really horrible coughs and he's a smoker. He's barrel chested and has thin arms and he's 60 now. He'll probably live forever like his dad, but I worry.

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  • Grey GhostGrey Ghost Registered User regular
    My dad's not perfect by any means
    He's quick to anger, he's very set in his ways and has a lot of outdated views on, let's say various social issues, but he does his best to adopt a sort of live-and-let-live attitude and would never tell anybody they should be living their life a different way

    Well, he probably would if it was me or my sister but it mostly doesn't come up

    He was married twice before he met my mom, no kids with either one. I can only assume mom was the only one who could stand to put up with him that long.

    But as difficult as he can be he's absolutely a good man
    You've all heard some stories I've told about him but the long and short of it is that he's spent most of his life fighting crime (and single-handedly holding back the red tide of Communism) and if I manage to accomplish a tenth of the badass things he's done I'll consider it to have been a good effort

  • Brovid HasselsmofBrovid Hasselsmof [Growling historic on the fury road] Registered User regular
    edited August 2013
    I can't think of anything to say about my dad that would make him sound interesting to people who hadn't met him. He gets on my nerves sometimes but he's a Good Dad and makes me laugh and I make him laugh, and in my family making each other laugh is how we love each other.

    I love him, and my mum, and my brother. They are a better family than I could possibly deserve.

    Dang, I should really tell them this rather than internet randoms.

    Brovid Hasselsmof on
  • KwoaruKwoaru Confident Smirk Flawless Golden PecsRegistered User regular
    Smof's dad survived the meteors

    Brovid Hasselsmof
  • Brovid HasselsmofBrovid Hasselsmof [Growling historic on the fury road] Registered User regular
    Yup, and he has titanium staples in his skull to prove it.

  • sarukunsarukun RIESLING OCEANRegistered User regular
    My father's father left when he was young. Bizarrely, he continues to be a part of our lives, calling occasionally and wondering why we don't call. I remember, very distinctly, some years ago he showed us photographs from when my father was five or six. Interspersed between family mementos were photographs of a woman he was clearly seeing while he was still married to my grandmother, just him and her at the beach. My father's father does not see the world outside himself.

    My own father is a man of quiet strength and insight. There is nothing which he cannot accomplish. He taught himself to work with computers. He taught himself how to wire a circuit. He taught himself how to build with wood. He taught himself how to evaluate, manage, purchase, and maintain real estate. He taught himself how to repair and then later to build plumbing systems. I am certain that, if he wished to, he could teach himself how to repair, fly, or build an aeroplane. I have never heard him say "I can't". I cannot recall the last time I heard him say "I don't want to."

    He is private, but not withdrawn. He is patient, but not indulgent. He is principled, but not zealous. He is loving, but not smothering. He exercises regularly. He has largely given up Pepsi, the only thing that could have been said to have been a vice which he allowed himself for many, many years. If there are any aspects of his personality that clashes with mine, it is that he, like my mother, is incessant when there is down time: Downtime is to be filled with things to do, constructive, educational, or diversionary. He also quite enjoys television of various kinds, which I have more or less given up. It is a confounding attraction to me. I feel like he is better than television, though that's probably my own bias getting in the way. He is a bit of a fussy eater: expanding the home menu is occasionally difficult; I must take special care when attempting to introduce new restaurants, finding appropriate fare on the menu for him in advance of any suggestions in order to make the recommendation stick.

    My father, like my mother, is relentlessly, perhaps even at one time desperately, self-sufficient. I cannot say that he is perfect, but he is beyond reproach or impeachment. I do not want to be him, but I do wish, on a nearly constant basis, that I was more like him.

  • bowtiedsealbowtiedseal Registered User regular
    My dad is great

    He always believes the best about people. He is in India doing science right now. It's one of my goals to best his travel records, which I don't know how I have any hope of doing.

  • HeadCreepsHeadCreeps NOW IS THE TIME FOR DRINKING! Registered User regular
    I haven't really spoken with or even seen my father since about 2001, around the time I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes. I don't think that's the exact reason why he stopped seeing my brothers and I, but that's just how I remember it. Every now and then he would call or send a letter saying how sorry he was or whatever, but other than that he just sort of fell out of our lives. He's never been what I would describe as "reliable"; he was usually late to pick us up when we saw him on weekends, he was constantly forgetting to bring us to any appointments, he always had some excuse for not paying child support, and so on and so forth. I have a feeling that some of you are probably familiar with some of these characteristics.

    That being said, despite all of his bullshit, I don't really harbor any ill-will towards him. It might sound a little strange, but I just don't really care. I'm more focused on trying to get my own shit together and trying to get my life in order than I am in trying to mend any relationships.

    Someday I'll try to call him or meet him or something, but I just don't feel like it's the right time.

    But it was awkward as hell seeing him send me a friend request on Facebook a couple months back :?

  • ShortyShorty touching the meat Intergalactic Cool CourtRegistered User regular

    this is, without exaggeration, exactly how my dad dresses himself

  • JayKaosJayKaos Registered User regular
    My mother once saw some gigantic, orange, fuzzy slippers in a store, and decided to buy them for my dad as a joke.

    She was half-way to the register when she realized he would actually wear them. In public. With her.

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