Wednesday, May 20, 2009
When we were small, I was probably 4 or 5, I remember doing this skit with my dad. It's something completely out of character, but a memory I hold dear. My dad was watching Ojo, me, and Snake because my mom was out running errands on a Saturday. We were in my parents' bedroom playing around their bed. This may be the same time that my dad recorded us on a little Radio Shack tape recorder. I said my favorite food was potatoes. And that I must have smoked a lot as a kid because my voice made Redd Foxx's sound smooth as silk.
My dad got out a kleenex or napkin and twisted it so that it was pinched in the middle and fanned out to either side, approximating a bow shape. My dad would put the kleenex on Ojo's upper lip, turning it into a mustache. "You must pay the rent!"
Then he'd put it on Snake's head, like a bow on a little girl. "But I can't pay the rent."
Back to Ojo's lip. "You must pay the rent!" Back to Snake's head. "But I can't pay the rent." Then to my neck, turning it into a bowtie. "I'll pay the rent." Back to Snake's bow. "My hero!"
I don't know where he came up with that. I'm just glad he did. I know at times in this space it seems like I've been dogging him out, and at times I was. Underlying every pixel in this blog, however, is the abiding awe which fathers inspire in their children and which stays with them the duration of their lives. The whole purpose of this blog was to understand some of what makes my dad my dad, to have a little fun doing it, and to realize what sort of impact I'm having on my own kids. I think I've accomplished all three goals. At the end, though, I can't really explain my dad or why he has held such sway over my life (whether he intended to or not), but I can accept that influence as the burden of fatherhood. For all the jokes about temper tantrums, cursing, and fucking cripples, my dad provided an excellent example of fatherhood, one I hope to match and improve on, so that one day when my son's on the holodeck reliving memories of his childhood he'll recognize the same dedication and love I recognize in my own father.
Posted by Rimas Kurtinaitis at 12:00 AM