Like Father, like daughter. All my life I’ve heard, “you look just like your Father.” It’s actually a compliment because my Father is a very handsome man. Except, I’m not a man. I guess one benefit of looking like my dad is I know what I’d look like if decided to change teams like Sonny and Cher’s son, Chaz (formerly daughter, Chastity) Bono did.
According to my mother, my Father and I both have a hard time finding hats to fit our “pumpkin-sized heads”. She actually ran out of a store in a fit of laughter once when I was trying desperately to find a flattering winter hat. We both have very distinctive crooked smiles that can turn into a trademark scowl at a moment’s notice. Although, we really don’t like the word scowl. We prefer to characterize it as an involuntary frown caused by being deep in thought.
Aside from the obvious facial features we share, I inherited my Father’s feet. We’re talking wide, flat, duck-like feet. The kind that keeps you out of the Army feet. If Fred Flintstone took a paternity test based on foot resemblance, we could very well be related. Once while getting a pedicure, I swear I heard my nail technician say, “canned hams” in Cantonese while sizing up the not-so Twinkle Toes that needed repair. My daughter often mistakes my feet for her Patrick dive stick when we’re playing in the pool. As you can imagine, they’re not exactly foot model material.
While this particular body flaw has plagued me most of my life, it doesn’t seem to faze my Father in the least. His motto in life is, “Don’t sweat the small stuff. And, everything is small stuff.” His anthem is the song, “Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive”. There is a running joke in our family that the man can fall asleep during anything. Concerts, movies, medical procedures, you name it. He’s slept through it. My Father says it’s because he has a clear conscience. He just may be on to something.
My Father has never been afraid to be himself. He sported a crew cut in the 1970’s when long hair was the rage. As a little league basketball coach, he wore the same mismatched outfit year after year for good luck. No fancy stuff for this guy. He prefers to read in his hammock, nurse his beautiful rose garden, watch The History Channel, Turner Classic Movies and PBS, feed his birds and watch amateur athletics. He never missed one of his children’s sporting events, even if they spent their time “riding-the-pine” or getting beat in running races by girls with sprained ankles (which was probably my most embarrassing moment as a student athlete).
One of his most admirable characteristics is that he is a man of few words. He has an uncanny ability to choose just the perfect word or phrase to sum up a situation or offer advice. This may explain the involuntary scowl. It’s almost like his brain can process over 70 years of experience, knowledge and wisdom to deliver the perfect prose or a deadpan humorous comment in a matter of seconds.
Physically, I’ve been walking in my Father’s footsteps all my life. I can only hope to capture his wisdom, kindness and wit as a grandparent, parent, friend, co-worker, neighbor and person of Earth in general. When it comes right down to it, Fred Flintstone feet are a small price to pay for having such a wonderful dad. Besides, a great pedicure and bright pink nail polish can do wonders for the ol’ piggly wigglys. So how’s that for “accentuating the positive and eliminating the negative?”
I’m so lucky to be able to enjoy my dad well into my adult life, unlike most of my friends who lost their Fathers all too soon.
Happy Father’s Day, Dad! LOVE *Y*O*U*R #*1 *D*A*U*G*H*T*E*R and fellow Duck Foot Club member.