This year, in honor of Father's Day, I decided to write a blog about my dad (who might possibly be the only person who consistently reads and enjoys this blog, anyway!).
More specifically, this is the story of how I inadvertently turned into my father.
I didn't plan for this to happen. I mean, I love my dad a lot, but I never set out to become him, exactly. But alas, now, as a fully fledged adult in my thirties that's what's happened.
Luke, I am my father. (Or whatever that quote is, I don't think I've actually ever seen Star Wars.)
It seemed to occur overnight. I just woke up one day, took a look at my life and realized what, or rather, who I'd become.
You might look at the two of us, my dad, a lawyer turned businessman who regularly donates to the Republican party and me, a zookeeper/author who regularly donates to things like Polar Bears International, and wonder how we can possibly be the same.
Well, there's evidence I can't deny:
We have the same face.
This is a given, and not one that I can control (actually I don't really think I can control any of this). My dad and I have the same face. Same big, German nose, same eyes, same everything. This is fine for my dad, but works to my disadvantage seeing as I'm a woman. Not exactly my choice to have a man's face, but hey, it's nothing a little mascara can't fix, most of the time.
We are both obsessed with music.
Most people like music, sure. But my dad and I LOVE music. Neither of us can do anything--drive, cook, clean, get ready for the day, eat dinner--without music on. I wouldn't say that either of us have the "coolest" or trendiest taste in music, but we both share a healthy appreciation for the classics. My dad taught me the Beatles and I subjected him to plenty of Backstreet Boys on our way to school in the morning, yet we both enjoyed any and all of it in turn. We are also both extremely confident in our playlist-making abilities for any season or occasion. Lake day? Dinner party? Wedding reception? My dad and I have it covered with the best possible tunes. Obviously, according to both of us, live music being the dieal choice.
Our morning routine.
When I was in high school I got up at 6 am every morning in order to pick up my carpool and make the 25 minute drive to school before the first bell. My dad would also get up at 6 am, even though he didn't have to leave for work until much later. As a sleep craving high schooler, I always judged him for it. Why are you awake when you don't have to be? I asked every morning with an obligatory eye roll. My dad would get the newspaper and sit around catching up on the news. I totally, totally judged him for it. Now, here I am, 15 years later and I do the exact same thing. I don't know when it started or why, but now that's exactly how I start every day. I live 2 miles from work and I don't have to be there until 8, yet I get up at 6 am every day just so I can sit around and read the news all morning. How did this happen??
We both have strong political opinions.
Let me make clear that my dad and I have truly POLAR OPPOSITE political opinions. I made the mistake of going over to my parent's house on election night in 2012 and let me just say, I will never do that again. BUT my dad and I are both stubborn and pig-headed in our political opinions in completely the same way. While the rest of my immediate family members reside somewhere in the political middle, my dad and I are both equals in our pig-headedness. We're right and we know it. We just have totally different opinions on almost every matter. I used to be a middle-minded person, but alas, as I get older I continue to turn into my dad.
My ankle cracks in exactly the same way.
One distinct sound from my childhood is the sound of my dad's ankle cracking as he went down the stairs. I know this is weird, but it's true. He'd tuck me in at night and then the last thing I heard before falling asleep would be that constant click, click, crack as my dad descended the steps. Now, I'm not joking, my ankle sounds exactly the same way every time I go down a set of stairs. Someone inevitably says, "What the heck is that noise?" and I inevitably have to answer, "Oh, excuse me, just over here turning into my dad."
We both enjoy a healthy dose of yard work.
This one may not be so accidentally pre-determined. My dad had three daughters, so one of us had to be groomed to do yard work. My older sister ran the lawnmower straight into our swing set the first time she drove it, so the job of grass cutter/weed picker/leaf raker fell to me. Now, as an adult and a new homeowner I've found myself eschewing unpacking boxes, cooking and generally participating in domestic housework in lieu of puttering around in our new yard pulling weeds and mulching. My dad, too, has a thing for yard work and always has. Find your passion, people, find your passion.
We both have an over the top obsession with pictures set to music videos.
Enough said here. My dad and I truly both enjoy a collection of themed photos set to some favorite tunes. Like, more than normal people do. We'll watch a video like that over, and over and over again and it just doesn't get old for us and we'll even go out of our way to bore other people by making them sit and watch it too. It is what it is, my friends.
So, there you have it. The evidence is clear. Though I am a thirty-something, blonde woman and he be but a sixty-something, white-haired man someway, somehow despite all predications toward the contrary we have become the same person.
So, how do I feel about this development?
Though I'd love to have a more feminine face, I can't say that I'm disappointed. My dad is, deep down, despite of or because of the music obsession, political stubbornness and cracking ankles, a thoroughly good person. He cares about his family and friends more than anything. He loves traditions. He works hard. He bases his decisions on a solid set of morals. He is someone I am more than happy to be slowly morphing into, and more than happy to celebrate today.
Happy father's day to all of the dads out there, I hope everyone was able to stay cool and have a wonderful day!