I like thinking about my father.

And, too, it's never stopped intriguing me how much I continue to love my father though I knew him for less than 16 years and though he died more than 4 decades ago.

But, what's a few decades when it comes to remembering a father whose very presence seems to have changed your own chemistry, your own vibration when you spent even the briefest amount of time together with him?

Candidly, my father was a product of his time and geography: he smoked (I HATE smoking), he drank (me, not so much) and, he gave no gifts (I can't remember ever receiving a gift of any kind from my father).

But, as truthfully as I can express it to you, today, no exchange of gifts was ever needed, either. Nor can I imagine what gift he could possibly have given me which would have made me love him more than I do today - more than 40 years after his physical death. No gift was needed as an admission price to my caring about him.

And as much as I hate the smell of cigarettes and the after affects of drinking back in the day, even those acknowledgements don't change the power of my affection still residing in me, today, his birthday.

He gave no gifts, yet, I loved him as much as my heart could love. (And, as a young overly-idealistic boy, I could love a LOT! I LOVED EVERYTHING: music, girls, BB guns, bow and arrows, movies of my heroes, and school, too!)

I just dug hanging around talking with my father about whatever he chose - music, news, school, and RELATIVES, too! lol

Though I may be slightly guilty of having an ever so slightly romanticized view about my father, as clearly as I can possibly state it, I still like everything I can recall about our father-son relationship.

As an indicator of that last statement, I'm still slightly miffed that he died just two weeks before my 16th birthday. I'm not sure as to whom or what I've remained miffed at - whether it's God or Nature or Life or a hybrid of them or at him or at myself. I just think it stinks that just about the time that I was coming to a bit of mature consciousness and clarity of thought, my favorite conversationalist - other than God (I ENJOYED TALKING WITH GOD) - was no longer available for our agenda-less conversations.

That I didn't like.

And I still don't like it! :-)

The latter statement makes me smile because I consider it CONFIRMATION of how much I still value, love, and enjoy memories of my father.

So, this is in remembrance of my father who would have been 102 years old today. (Even if he were still alive and dependent on me or others, I'm sure that he'd INSIST on looking good - and stylish in freshly pressed shirts! :-) (And I know that if I'd take him on a tour of the Internet as I know it today, he'd probably turn out to be one of the biggest geeks on God's good planet! He'd STAY in Google because he'd just LOVE this stuff many of us take for granted. :-) )

He was a good father and a knowledgeable conversationalist whose vocabulary seemed anachronistic for our neighborhood in Columbia, SC back in the 1960's .

In remembering him today, I consider myself to have been a blessed child to have known him...Because of him, I still feel blessed, today...

+Thanks, and Keep STRONG!!

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