I love you, Dad!
June 15, 2007 11:43 PM   Subscribe

A salute to my Dad and all the good Daddies out there for all the sacrifices you made for us; for making us laugh; for letting us come to work with you to help drive the bus; for looking after us and teaching us things; for never being a phony; for all the awesome things you were and for all the awful things you weren't, well for all that, we have a few words we'd like to say to you.
posted by madamjujujive (50 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Howard Moss, Elegy for My Father:
Father, whom I murdered every night but one,
That one, when your death murdered me.

posted by madamjujujive at 11:54 PM on June 15, 2007 [3 favorites]

I haven't seen my father for nearly two years, I haven't spoken to him since before Christmas.

I love you Dad, and I know we have had our differences over the years, but I promise to make more of an effort as you mean so much to me.

Thank you for this life.
posted by Samuel Farrow at 12:14 AM on June 16, 2007

posted by Sangermaine at 12:51 AM on June 16, 2007

"The killer awoke at dawn
he put his boots on
he took a face from the ancient gallery
he visited the room where his brother slept, and then
he paid a visit to his sister....
and he walked on down the hall
and he came to a door
'Yes, son?'
'I want to kill you.'"
-- The Doors

"And if you see my dad?
Tell him that i slit his throat
in this dream i had."
-- Eminem
posted by ELF Radio at 12:56 AM on June 16, 2007

For mother, on father's day. Sad. I dunno, I try to be a good father, yet I look at my own father and feel, maybe he tried too, and, so.
posted by Rumple at 1:06 AM on June 16, 2007


take a wild guess
posted by flaterik at 1:22 AM on June 16, 2007

March 31st, 2006

posted by chuckdarwin at 1:26 AM on June 16, 2007

My dad died when I was 19... "My Papa's Waltz" by Theodore Rothke always makes me think of him (even though it's written from the point of view of a young boy, and I was a girl, it still resonates)...

My Papa's Waltz
by Theodore Roethke

The whiskey on your breath
Could make a small boy dizzy;
But I hung on like death:
Such waltzing was not easy.
We romped until the pans
Slid from the kitchen shelf;
My mother's countenance
Could not unfrown itself.
The hand that held my wrist
Was battered on one knuckle;
At every step you missed
My right ear scraped a buckle.
You beat time on my head
With a palm caked hard by dirt,
Then waltzed me off to bed
Still clinging to your shirt.
posted by amyms at 1:28 AM on June 16, 2007 [1 favorite]

It's been about 3 years since I spoke to my dad due to a misunderstanding about whether I wished to become involved in an act of criminal damage and fraud which I declined. I'll probably relent this year and finally send him an email. He might be a wanker but then again, so am I and I'd rather seek some sort of common ground than miss out on having a dad again.

The worst thing is looking at the mistakes he made when he was supposed to be raising me and then realising that I am doing them as well. Time will tell whether my son will say something similar come 20 years...
posted by longbaugh at 1:44 AM on June 16, 2007

Most excellent posting madam! Thanks.
posted by homodigitalis at 2:01 AM on June 16, 2007

I love you so much, Dad. Even with the tough times we had, you always remained the voice of reason in my life, especially when I didn't want to hear it. I love you for it.

I'm glad you're working out and getting healthier- both of aren't getting any younger! I want to enjoy my relationship with you for as long as I can.

I hope I can be half the father you are to me.
posted by SeanMac at 2:24 AM on June 16, 2007

That sylvia plath film always makes me think of my childhood, and what I learned of it in later years. Here's hoping that I never have that in common with anyone. The children of the cold war's bureaucratic might should never have to bear witness to the death that it caused. I actually feel glad for the witless aristocracy that resulted.

You know, I only ever thought of my dad as a hero when he bought me beer and got me pussy. I never considered what he'd actually done during the early 90s. All the death that UN peacekeeping forces brought, all the families that his campaigns wrought against innocent civilian lives. The fact that you can't even look at a civilian from a former eastern European satellite state without feeling guilt. The endless conversations full of empty second-hand compensation. The apologies. The fear. Judgment. Pain. Self-loathing.

But if you've had a dad like mine, you never need to think about that stuff. It's with you, whether you want it or not. It's not even conscious.

They're laughing and stamping on you. Daddy, daddy, I'm through.
posted by electronslave at 2:40 AM on June 16, 2007

Hello dad, I'm in jail
Hi dad, I'm calling you from jail
Hi dad, happy birthday, I'm in jail
jail, jail, hi dad

All those years, I'm in jail now
I'm in jail, I like it here
It's nice, I like it
Hello dad, I'm in jail
Hello, hello dad, hi, I'm in jail
Say hi to mom, from jail
I'm in jail, I'm gonna stay here
I like it here
I like it, yeah, throw away the key
I'm in jail

Hello dad, I'm in jail
jail, jail, jail, jail
posted by mattoxic at 4:03 AM on June 16, 2007 [5 favorites]

My Old Man

Only because the Smothers Brothers song, which my father introduced me to as a wee mustachio, is infuriatingly unavailable.

Dad, you made me a nerd, and forever a nerd I shall be. Thank you.
posted by louche mustachio at 4:33 AM on June 16, 2007

fondest memory? Got called back into service for Korean war just after it began. My father took me out to the backyard, handed me a five dollar bill (we had so little money) and told me to "spend it on whatever I liked." Came back from Korea and we went down the street to a bar. He got drunker than I did. Stumbled and fell down concrete stairs and needed stitches for his head. Turned to me, smiled, and said: "well, I guess you're a man now and can outdrink your dad."
posted by Postroad at 4:55 AM on June 16, 2007

louche mustachio writes ' My Old Man'

"The url contained a malformed video id."

That's a real coincidence, because my old man had a malformed id as well.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 5:38 AM on June 16, 2007 [1 favorite]

Sigh. Miss the crazy old coot. Hard to believe that he's been gone for five years now.
posted by octothorpe at 6:23 AM on June 16, 2007

Father's Day is on Sunday, doofus.

You got me all freaked out for nothing.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:43 AM on June 16, 2007

Nine years for me, octothorpe. I miss him.
posted by watsondog at 7:07 AM on June 16, 2007


1/48 - 10/2006.

RIP, Pops, you're sorely missed up here.
posted by winks007 at 7:29 AM on June 16, 2007

PS...send lawyers, guns and money.
posted by winks007 at 7:30 AM on June 16, 2007

admins, please correct my comment to 1/48 - 10/2002. (fat fingers)
posted by winks007 at 7:38 AM on June 16, 2007

Don't be too sad, thinking about your dead father. There is nothing as heartbreaking as a father burying his child. If you have outlived your dad, excellent! The world is right, things are as they should be.
posted by Meatbomb at 7:44 AM on June 16, 2007 [3 favorites]

Father knows best? -- "So many of the ‘facts’ that dads have imparted to their kids are wrong."
posted by ericb at 8:51 AM on June 16, 2007

My biological dad left before I was born, and just came back into my life recently. This year is the second time ever that I have wished him a happy father's day. The man I call dad is my brother's father, divorced from my mom since I was 10 - but he's the one who was there for me, even after he and my mom split up and he didn't need to pretend I was his kid anymore. I am lucky now, as an adult, to have two fathers who love me, and who I respect and admire.
posted by arcticwoman at 9:04 AM on June 16, 2007

My dad's still alive and kickin', thankfully. All my life, my mother wondered where she went wrong - what she could have done to cure me of my preoccupation with the macabre, a preoccupation that turned into a career. She has no idea... none... that my dad - Mr. Happy All the Time Sunshine guy - is the culprit.

(Like my child self could have come up with such gems as "Maggot Man and his faithful sidekick Kid Cadaver" entirely on her own. During church.)
posted by katillathehun at 9:17 AM on June 16, 2007

The best thing my dad ever did for me was teach me how to get boys, albeit indirectly. How, you may ask? He taught me about cars, and about mechanics and electronics, and how to take them apart to find out what's wrong. And he taught me how to enjoy it.

I get bonus points with most men because I'm not afraid to get up to my elbows in grease. Thanks, Dad! :D
posted by Verdandi at 9:49 AM on June 16, 2007

Father, whom I murdered every night but one,
That one, when your death murdered me.

Fourteen years for me. RIP Bob.

It's true of every generation that they take their parents for granted. But you never get over their deaths. Part of you dies along with them. Time doesn't heal. And you are full of regrets. What wouldn't you give for one more day in their company?
posted by bobbyelliott at 9:56 AM on June 16, 2007

If you have outlived your dad, excellent! The world is right, things are as they should be.

I outlived my father only because he was killed while I was in the womb. I'd say that's pretty fucking far from the world being right.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:30 AM on June 16, 2007

SISU! Dad.


posted by Jikido at 10:38 AM on June 16, 2007

posted by Jikido at 10:38 AM on June 16, 2007

My dad was always a curmudgeonly, cranky sort. Never outwardly affectionate, probably couldn't tell you any of his kid's birthdays or ages. But he was always there, and I mean that literally; he never went out after work, came straight home, and he was able to retire at a young age because of his union's "30 and out" agreement. He showed love they way he knew how, in ways I didn't recognize as love until I was much older. He was an ace mechanic and always kept our bicycles (and later, our cars) in top shape, he installed central air conditioning in our house in the mid-1960s when it was still a novelty for most homes. I'll always remember when our city paved the sidewalks on the next block, and us kids would spend many a happy summer afternoon roller skating there, because the new cement was so smooth. One irate neighbor kept dashing outside and yelling at us to keep off the sidewalk, we were scratching it up. When I tearfully reported this at home, my stodgy old Dad, whom I didn't know could even skate, strapped my metal skates onto his shoes and muttered "Let's just see him try and keep me off his precious sidewalk!"
posted by Oriole Adams at 11:06 AM on June 16, 2007 [2 favorites]

What wouldn't you give for one more day in their company?

No kidding. My parents split when I was an infant, and my mom remarried when I was 4--I remember meeting my stepdad when I was 3. My stepdad raised me, and my older brother and sister, and is the only father I ever knew to live at my home.

He died in 1994, when I was in college. I would give anything for him to see the man I've grown into, how carefully I actually did pay attention to the lessons he was teaching me in his gentle, persistent, compassionate way--no matter how much resistance I offered at the time. I learned how to be a man from him, and would love to talk to him now, for just one day even--to finally be friends, too. And I sure would love to have his advice and perspective again.

I agree that you never get over the death of a parent--that loss just becomes part of who you are, but it never goes away.

(For those interested, I commissioned a piece of music to celebrate his life, posted it a while back here. Details about the piece at the bottom of the thread.)
posted by LooseFilter at 11:22 AM on June 16, 2007

My condolences to all of you who are without a dad, either through loss by death or some other loss. My heart goes out to those of you who never had a chance to know your Dad at all. My own Dad passed away a number of years ago and I miss him dearly - but have wonderful memories of a loving and kind man who liked nothing more than to laugh and be with his family. I'll be raising a Bloody Mary toast to him tomorrow - he and my Mom and I used to like to share Sunday brunches.

This thread has a lot of touching memories. Many of the links I posted are funny, silly, or amusing, but the thread has taken a decidedly contemplative tone, by and large. In that vein, we've had a few awesome posts in AskMetafilter that deal with the father child relationship. If you are thinking about your Dad or how to be a Dad, you might enjoy perusing them. posted by madamjujujive at 12:23 PM on June 16, 2007

You are dead, eternally burning
You didn't win, I have risen above you
I have risen above my ashes

You chose death, but I choose life
I am moving on

No longer will I fear you,
No longer will you haunt my life
I will not let you take away my happiness

You chose death, but I choose life
I am moving on.

My not so wonderfull poem, written last year in memory of dear old dad, who killed himself on my birthday. Bastard.
posted by Jenny is Crafty at 12:33 PM on June 16, 2007

Love you stepdad. Takes a special man to unload all the baggage and love the impossible kids too.
posted by litfit at 1:31 PM on June 16, 2007

My dad died in March of this year. Growing up as a child, he was a violent, physically and sexually abusive alcoholic. In 1973 he had a series of shock treatments and more or less turned into a community involved, progressive political saint for the rest of his life.

I had come to terms with him and thought I'd forgiven him but, last year I ran into someone who was still suffering as the result of his sexual abuse.

When he died I was in a great deal of emotional turbulence over what to say at the funeral. Should I tell the truth about the beatings, violence, and abuse or should I stay silent and let people think he was a saint.

The day before the funeral I was leading a leadership training program. We were talking about corporate interpersonal communication and a young participant said "praise in public, scorn in private". It was the perfect thing for me to hear.

At the funeral my sister who had been abused by him talked about his ressurection and I shared some the positive things my father had done for me. I left the funeral at peace and accepting.

Today I am missing my father.
posted by Xurando at 2:10 PM on June 16, 2007 [1 favorite]

Frankly, I wish I had more to appreciate my father for, but that all happens in the fantasy world inside of my head where the colors are bright and shiny and the air is super clean and vegetables taste like dark chocolate. So instead I shall appreciate all of your fathers because they sound really kickass.

Go kickass fathers! You give dads a good name. And that rocks.
posted by miss lynnster at 3:19 PM on June 16, 2007 [1 favorite]

And Jenny is Crafty, that's really awful. I'm so sorry to hear that he did that to you.

No comparison here, but my dad put his evil dingo dog to sleep on my birthday. My birthday greetings from here on until my father's passing shall consist of: "Remember when I had to put him to sleep on your birthday? He was the love of my life." And then I'll have to spend another half hour of my life consoling the childish, self-absorbed fucker.

Ooof. I just said that out loud, didn't I? Shhhh.

Some of you may relate to this, I don't know... but Father's Day cards have always been so heartbreaking for me to pick out. I always dread it. I don't like to lie, and they're always so full of "Thanks for being there!" and "You're such a source of strength!" and all sorts of stuff that I can't say. I hate that I can't say any of it.

I wish I could. More than anything.
posted by miss lynnster at 3:30 PM on June 16, 2007

Thanks Miss Lynnster...I am feeling just a tad bit bitter this weekend.

Growing up I had a friend who was a little weird, but she was in love with her pet pig, as in wanted to marry it. Her father had it butchered and served for her birthday dinner to teach her a lesson about growing up. That kind of reminds me of your story, except hopefully you did not have to eat the dog.

posted by Jenny is Crafty at 3:50 PM on June 16, 2007

Well, my dad died when I was a senior in high school. It really changed the direction I thought my life was headed. I can't say I miss him, but I know my brother and sister do.
I'm a dad now. Tomorrow my daughter and I will go to the Jubilee Old English Faire, just like last year and the year before that. I'm trying to establish some sort of tradition with her, a history she can be happy about. Thanks for this post.
posted by Sailormom at 8:47 PM on June 16, 2007

Have fun at the Faire. But wait... shouldn't you be calling yourself Sailordad? :)
posted by miss lynnster at 10:58 PM on June 16, 2007

You know, it's cheesy, and my Dad would be pissed if he ever heard this, but every time I hear the song "Fire and Rain", I turn into a sobbing puddle of suck.

Because I always thought I'd see him again.

Sorry, Dad.
posted by dirigibleman at 12:15 AM on June 17, 2007

Was gonna start a new thread featuring this this morning, but I think I'll just add it here.
posted by jbickers at 7:30 AM on June 17, 2007

miss lynnster: ....shouldn't you be calling yourself Sailor-dad? Probably. But my daughter likes Sailor Moon and she lives with me making me a Mr. Mom. It's her nickname for me.
posted by Sailormom at 9:51 AM on June 17, 2007

Thanks for this thread madamjujujive!

I hugged my dad today after a long time. Just sat next to him while he was eating and gave him a side embrace, kind of placing my hand over his shoulder, and told him everything was going to be alright. Felt nice.
posted by hadjiboy at 10:15 AM on June 17, 2007

miss lynnster, I know exactly what you mean about Father's Day cards. There aren't a lot of cards out there that acknowledge the day without praising the man. "Father's Day -- too bad you screwed up"?
posted by Katherine Kimber at 10:45 AM on June 17, 2007 [1 favorite]

posted by hadjiboy at 11:21 AM on June 17, 2007

Hey Dad,

You've been gone for 18 years and I still miss you deeply. You taught me to enjoy fixing things with my own hands and to take pride in doing home improvement projects I would have paid someone else a lot of money to do for me. Thanks for being a gentle nurturing man most of the time - I know that you had you share of demons and you did the best you could to keep them to yourself. I wish my son could know you. I wish you had lived long enough to see that I turned out just fine.

Hey Husband,

Thank you for being the kind of man that our son can love and respect instead of fear. It makes me happy to watch the two of you together.
posted by echolalia67 at 1:31 PM on June 17, 2007

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