Friday, June 22, 2012

My busy week in review.

It has been a week packed full of activity in my neck of the woods this week. It started with Sunday, as most weeks generally start with Sunday, that part was routine. However, this particular Sunday was also Father’s day. My wife and children greeted me with warmth and announced that I was to enjoy this day. This was good.

I had to work in the afternoon and my coworkers also gave me warm Father’s day greetings. This, I thought, was good. But then I realized that people were probably not wishing me a happy father’s day because of my being an amazing father, but rather because they are all young and I am not and I probably reminded them of their father.  In light of the fact that I only admit to being twenty-five, this is not good.

I would have called my father to send him best wishes for being a father, but he is dead. This is bad.

I thought of less blunt ways to say that and none seemed appropriate. Especially inappropriate is the phrase, “I lost my father.” Car keys, phone numbers, and pens are lost, fathers--not so much. It may be socially acceptable to lose your mind, but not a beloved family member. Fathers do not fall in the cracks of the couch to reappear during spring cleaning. Nor do they dissappear under beds until the search for heavy winter blankets begins. I hope my daughters pay close attention to this admonition, losing your dad is bad.

Monday followed Sunday, which soon turned into Tuesday, which, of course led to Wednesday, also known as Graduation Day. This was due to the fact that Eldest graduated from High School Wednesday evening. I was excited that my daughter invited me, apparently the years of embarrassment that she had suffered from her father were forgiven and she allowed me to attend.
Not wanting to embarrass Eldest on such an auspicious occasion, I read the letter her principle sent home outlining appropriate behavior for family members during the graduation ceremony, which was being held at Rochester Institute of Technology’s (RIT) Gordon Field House. One thing that struck me was the ban on air horns. The letter specifically stated that air horns and other noisemakers would be confiscated by RIT security. The only air horn that I have access to is attached to a bus and I couldn’t figure out how to sneak a bus into the field house so I figured I was safe.

Imagine my horror when I saw an entire horde of young people brazenly carrying in air horns, big banging drum thingies, and all sorts of other noisemakers. I was sure that security was going to swoop down on these rule breakers like a horde of TSA agents on a 3.5-ounce bottle of shampoo.

They were left unmolested and soon the patriarchal figure of those young people stood up with a big stick, which he shook at them. As he shook the stick, they made loud noises with their noisemakers. This continued on for three or four minutes until he finally got tired of shaking his stick and they stopped until the end of the ceremony. At this point the man, having regained his strength, stood up and shook his stick again and his horde made noises.

The next day, Thursday, we had a graduation party for Eldest. I was opposed to this. As much as I love Eldest, I do not see why she deserved a party for sitting in a chair for an hour, standing up, walking across a stage, taking a folder, and shaking a couple of hands. This hardly constituted a reason for celebration and I told Beloved so. She gave me “The Look” and we had the party. 

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