Sunday, June 20, 2004

In Praise of my Old Man

In honor of Fathers Day, I thought I’d use this post to quickly unveil a few of my fathers more curious tendencies. He may have many fooled as to his genuine sincerity and kindness, but there’s more lurking behind the closed curtains than you may all realize. My father is a man of unique style and overwhelming culture, a real man of wealth and taste.

First of all, it has become very obvious to my siblings and myself that our father suffers from a tragic life-altering psychosis that we rarely speak of in public. Apparently, as a young adult, a little older than myself, my father was at some time exposed to one popular television celebrity that left a lasting impression on his life: “Hey Mag, I SOAKED in it!” At the time, it must have really struck a deep cord within him because he’s been doing just THAT as much as possible, and as often as possible… ever since! You see, sadly, my father suffers from a rare obsessive/compulsive disorder that continually leaves him with the inexplicable urge to do the dishes, no matter what time of day or night. I have named this peculiar psychological condition, based on the extensive scientific studies that I have conducted on my father over the past few years, by purposely leaving all the used plates and utensils in the kitchen sink, as “DISH-LEXIA”. To note; my father has soaked his pinkies in so much soapy dishwater suds, that he can now proudly proclaim from the rooftops, “Hey Mag, Soak on these, Bitch!” In all honesty, if you were able to recycle and reuse all the soapy dishwater my father has soaked in; you would have found your solution to the Ohio water shortage crisis after the recent Blackout. If I was financially smart, I’d invest in plenty of shareholder stocks in Palmolive Dishsoap. In a few years time, I’ll have made enough in return shared profits to be able to retire to that big fancy mansion house in the countryside I have dreamed about.

My father is also an enthusiastic lover of all things Italian in origin. I have this dubbed this behavioral fascination as being a “WOP-O-PHILE”. All this of course, without speaking or understanding a single word of the language beyond Pizza, Lasagna, or Andrea Bocecelli. It’s his favorite food, his favorite music, and his favorite thing on the television to fall asleep to. Then, there’s that REALLY satisfying baked-on grease that you can only find in good authentic home cooked Italian pasta dishes. Now that really gets those addictive dishlexic impulses firing! Oh yes, let’s not forget my father’s favorite actor: Al “Hoo Ha” Pacino. My father will endlessly surf the vast array of television channels for hours. He’ll flip past racy game shows, educational documentaries, Loony Tune cartoons, comedy sitcoms, global news broadcasts, war coverage, election results, the Ms. Nude Oil Wrestling Championships’ on ESPN, and even poor “Al Bundy” re-runs. All if it means that he can find that one Italian sub-titled, black & white art movie on the ‘Foreign Film Channel’ hidden deep in the recesses of the cable network channels…where he promptly falls asleep, snoring, after about 3 nano-seconds of conscious focused attention. I think my father is attempting to learn the language through osmosis. And at the rate he’s going, we’ll have a regular, fluent speaking, Casanova “Italian Job” of our very own, by the end of the next millenium.

This of course, brings me to my next noteworthy point about my father’s strange and unique character. My father is an “in-the-closet” supporter of the ‘Cinematic Arts’? That’s right, you can see his profoundly rooted interest in the cinema, in the various deep-probing questions he asks about the artistic cinematography, the character representations and the dramatic plot-line twists during the movies screening. Such deep probing questions as: “Hey, what’s he doing?”, “Who’s that?”, “Who’s she?”, “What’s happening again?”, and the one question that still continues to inspire me to this day: “What’s this called again, Ter?” Did you know that my father, single-handedly, holds the Guinness Record for “The Single Most Viewing of ‘Hoosiers’ (with Gene Hackman) by an Adult Male?” My dear old father, you see, has managed during his lifetime, to stay awake and watch this particular movie about high school basketball in Indiana, an amazing total of 6 zillion, 3 hundred and fifty kabillion, 4 hundred and ninety two million billion times. And that’s second only to the movie ‘Witness’ (with Harrison Ford) by only a mere margin of 60 zillion viewings. I remember being woken up in the middle of the night by my father unknowingly shouting out, “I’ll make it coach!” in his sleep. All other movies seem to pale in comparison. But not to be undaunted, my fathers utilized his severe lacking in the ability to stay awake past the first 5 minutes of a movie, and has finished writing and is set poised to publish his life’s work: “The Narcoleptic’s Guide to the Greatest Opening Credit’s in Movie History”. I can’t tell you enough what a smash success this is bound to be in the chic Hollywood World. I will buy a diamond studded cumerbund to accessorize with my new fancy tuxedo that I will able to buy with the millions from my Palmolive Dishsoap stock shares, for when I get to glamorously strut down the red carpet at the first celebrity Book Signing. “HOO-HA!”

But in all honesty, all these wonderful qualities and charming eccentricities that I’ve enlightened you with, there’s still one character point about my father that I’m certain most everybody around him already has come to recognize; and that’s his complete and undivided devotion and dedication to hard work. There will be a group of beavers sitting around on couches drinking ice cold beers while watching ‘Tool Time’ on the television, saying ‘Pffft! Leave it till tomorrow, Bear!” before my father will throw in the towel on the average workday. Not as long as long as there’s day old boxer shorts in the hamper, Amazonian weeds growing unattended in the garden, a speck of pigeon crap the size of a Tic-Tac on the windshield, a single knife smeared with peanut butter and jelly in the kitchen sink, or an eldest son who needs to move his furniture last-minute across the city, will my father EVER be able to truly allow himself to rest comfortably! I also think that it is through this same Zen-like dedication to hard work that my father has achieved the very things most dear in his life.

So raise your glasses high…to my old man. May his life continue to be filedl with happiness and laughter, and may my stocks in Palmolive Dishsoap skyrocket through the roof.


Post a Comment

<< Home