Friday, June 19, 2015

Pull His Finger

Thought for the day:  I never got along with my dad. Kids used to say, "My dad can beat up your dad." I'd say, "Yeah? When?"  [comedian Bill Hicks]

If I remember right, that picture of my father, brother, and me was taken on an Easter Sunday. A long time ago. You know, back in the Dark Ages. We were mostly happy in those days, living in a tiny rental home in a fairly quiet neighborhood, with a decent-sized yard, and some room to roam around us. Things were never quite the same after we left there and moved into a row home with a postage stamp yard, and wall-to-wall people. I often wonder if our lives would have been different, easier maybe, if we'd stayed in what we thought of as the country.

He was a very difficult man with a lot of personal demons, our father, but I guess he did the best he knew how. Now that he's been gone for a few years, I do my best to remember the good times. Like the years we spent in that home, and the day my mother took that picture. Back in the Dark Ages.

I had another post prepared for today, but in honor of Father's Day, I opted to post something about fathers, instead. The bulk of this post is a re-run of a Father's Day post from 2011, originally titled, In Honor of Toasted Marshmallows, which describes my Smarticus pretty darned well. He can be tough and crusty on the outside... sometimes too tough... but on the inside, he's very sweet and gooey. Both qualities made him a wonderful dad, especially since he had me to balance things out a little. Because he tended to be too hard on our boys, and too easy on our daughter,  I had to be the Enforcer with our daughter, and the Mediator for our sons. (I mean, really, grounding them for life was a tad too much...) Anyhow, he was, and is, a terrific farter father, and I'm pleased to say both of our sons are superior farters fathers, as well. And you know, no matter how tall our kids are, I'm pretty sure they'll always look up to their dad.

This picture was taken quite a few years ago, too, but not in the Dark Ages. Our kids are no longer small enough to climb all over Smarticus, but... our grandchildren are. (Some of 'em, anyway.)

Never raise your hand to your kids. It leaves your groin unprotected. [Red Buttons]

There should be a children's song: "If you're happy and you know it, keep it to yourself, and let your dad sleep.  [Jim Gaffigan]

Okay, shall we revisit that old slightly edited post now? I'm even gonna leave in the four-year-old weird news bits...

888888888888888888888888888888888888888

Thought for the day:  Howcum a man can wait patiently for hours on end for a fish to bite, and can wait patiently in the freezing cold for hours on end, waiting for a deer to come by, but can't tolerate so much as a ten minute wait for food in a restaurant ... where it's a sure thing?


[seniorark.com]
You probably wouldn't be surprised to know the highest volume of long distance phone calls always occurs on Mother's Day. Not that there aren't plenty made on Father's Day, too. But most of them are collect. Why is it moms get the thoughtful gifts, while dads can usually count on getting aftershave or yet another tie they'll never wear? And when Father's Day rolls around, why do the kids think it's okay to buy dear old Dad something from the discount bin at the Dollar Store, and what's more, pay for it with change left over from the cash he gave them to buy something really nice for Mother's Day? As Bill Cosby put it, Fatherhood is pretending the present you love most is soap-on-a-rope.

Just because the phrase Pull my finger is in the lexicon of  fathers worldwide doesn't mean they aren't as sentimental as mothers. Not at all. They just don't show it as easily. Very often, they're like toasted marshmallows: crusty on the outside, and all sweet and mushy on the inside.

In honor of Father's Day, I'd like to share some excerpts with you from an article you may have seen before. Geezers has appeared countless places without attribution, but as best I could discern, it may have been written in 2001 by a West Virginia chaplain by the name of Koren Fae Rawlings:

[morguefile]
Geezers are easy to spot. At parades, they're the ones standing a little taller and often saluting when the flag passes by. At sporting events and at ceremonies on national holidays, they're the ones who stand erect and hold their hands over their hearts when the national anthem is played.

If you bump into an old geezer on the sidewalk, he'll apologize. Pass a geezer on the street, and he'll nod, maybe say hello. Geezers trust strangers and are courtly toward women. They hold the door for the next person, and always, when walking, make sure the lady is on the inside.

Geezers have moral courage. They're the ones staring down those making offensive remarks or acting in an offensive manner. Geezers seldom brag unless it's about their grandchildren.

This country needs geezers. We need their decent values and their common sense. We need their breadth of experience, their depth of knowledge and high ideals.

Thank God for all Old Geezers.
+++

And thank God for fathers.

Mark Twain said, "When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years." And Charles Wadsworth said, "By the time a man realizes that maybe his father was right, he usually has a son who thinks he's wrong."

So give your dad a break. Even if he's not the affectionate sort, and his last hug felt more like a wrestling hold, let him know how much you appreciate him. Because he may not tell you how to live, but he lives, and lets you watch him do it.

To all you fathers, a very happy Father's Day. And to all of you who still have fathers, go ahead ... make him happy.  Pull his finger.

And now, 'tis time for the (ta DA!)

Weirdest News Stories of the Week


Pull my hoof
Cows have taken a bit of heat for the amount of methane they produce, and some countries have even considered imposing a "methane tax" on the people who own them. In 2008, researchers in Argentina hooked cows to the bizarre-looking contraption on the left to collect their methane, quantify it, and ascertain how much it contributed to the country's greenhouse emissions. As it turned out, they contribute quite a bit. Final results indicated that as much as 30% of the country's greenhouse emissions consist of cow farts and burps.



*** Now, the Australian government is taking a hard sniff at camel belches. With an estimated 1.2 million feral camels roaming the outback, each belching approximately one hundred gaseous pounds of methane every year, that racks up to a global warming impact equivalent to 1.1 tons of carbon dioxide. Per camel. The recent legislative proposal would allow sharpshooters to earn carbon credits by killing camels, and then these credits would subsequently be sold to global polluters to offset their own emissions. Bureaucrats are expected to reach a decision on this proposal by the end of the year.

I'd walk a mile for a roll of Tums. [morguefile]

***  The city of Nederland, Colorado, is offering to sell the celebratory rights for ... a dead man. When 89-year-old Bredo Mortoel died, his family decided to preserve his body, in hopes of one day being able to bring him back to life. So his body,  packed in dry ice, resides in an outdoor shed, and for the past ten years, this small mountain town has been celebrating this deceased man on ice with an annual festival, replete with a parade of hearses, frozen salmon tossing, and coffin races. Believe it or not, it's been a very popular festival, but you know how the economy is. The Chamber of Commerce says the festival has simply become too expensive, so they're trying to sell the rights to it, and hope an event company will step up to keep this unusual festival going.

our daughter and her husband

*** Ever wonder what those Scotsmen wear under their kilts? The answer became clear for recent groom Angus McClure, who sat his kilt-clad bottom on his new bride's knee. Unfortunately, his bare and poorly-wiped bottom left a brown "skid mark" on her pristine gown. Let's just say she wasn't at all impressed. In fact, she decked him, and a knock-down, drag-out, free-for-all followed. Police say they've seen nasty wedding party brawls before, but none quite this nasty. Seven people were hauled off to jail. The bride and groom? Once they sobered up, the report is they reconciled, and fortunately, have no memory of the melee. Let's hope no one took pictures.

                               
                                             Have a wonderful Father's Day, y'all.

                              Until next time, take care of yourselves. And each other.


66 comments:

  1. Happy Father's Day to Smarticus!!

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    1. Thanks! I hope your hubby had a good one, too.

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  2. Happy Father's Day to Smarticus - and all those who celebrate it.
    We were forbidden to celebrate either Mother's or Father's Day on the grounds that one day cannot make up for a year of neglect.

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    1. Wow, that's an interesting point of view. Kind of understandable, but also kinda sad. (And guilt-inducing.)

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  3. Oh my gosh! Parts of this had me tearing up, Susan, like the lovely sentiments of Chaplain Rawlings, and your profile of your own early years (your dad's picture immediately reminded me of Jack London, who he resembles there). Your family dynamic sounds familiar --we had 3 boys then 1 daughter (around whom I turned to jelly). In short, happy Fathers' Day to your hero and household. Your post has certainly sent some happiness here.

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    1. To be perfectly honest, I'm not sure what London looked like, but my father was a very good-looking man.

      HA! I can totally relate to the "turning to jelly" comment about your daughter. A very apt description. I hope you had a fantabulous Father's Day, dude.

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  4. A perfect post for Father' day, beautifully written.
    Happy Father's day :)

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  5. Happy father's day to your Smarticus... I too try to remember the good times with my dad... he had his own demons too.

    Fathers really are given the short enf when it comes to gifts... they are goid about it though..xox

    I've met someone special... he's a big kind teddy bear guy who's sweet... we'll see how it goes... so far so good ♡

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    1. Thanks. Smarticus had a loverly Father's Day.

      I'm soooooo glad to hear you've met someone special, Launna. I hope you enjoy a wonderful and long-lasting adventure together. :)

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  6. Fathers need more recognition and better gifts, for sure. I've come across many magnificent geezers.

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    1. Yes, a lot of fathers are unsung heroes, but the beauty in it is that they don't want or expect accolades or better gifts. Like good geezers, they're just doing what they think should be done.

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  7. Crusty Fathers abound. They're one of a kind. It's not always a fantastic kind, but it's a kind. Thanks, Susan!

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    1. Yep, definitely a "kind", and for some of them, the crust even washes off!

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  8. Hope a happy father's day is had at your sea. My father, meh, best describes him lol if I'm being nice.

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    1. We had a good Father's Day, but not at our pad. We spent the last five days in the mountains of Tennessee.

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  9. Good fathers produce good fathers. Being parents is the hardest job, and if we do it well, the outcome will usually be good. Sometimes, though, that long ago daemon relative's DNA pops out. If that happens, blame it on your other half's genes.

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    1. I think fathers who are good role models teach their sons how to behave by example, but I also think wise sons can learn how NOT to behave when their fathers are lousy examples. At least, I hope so.

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  10. Happy Father's Day to Smarticus. Good post and glad you can look back on your father and reflect on the decent stuff. My week in PA has me wishing I lived closer. I'm lucky - my Dad's the best. Well, have a good weekend.

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    1. Thanks. We enjoyed a super Father's Day in Tennessee.

      I'm glad you and your siblings had such a good time with your father. A week-long Father's Day celebration!

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  11. I miss my dad. I'm glad he lived long enough to know how much I appreciated him. Those teenage years are rough, but it all gets better after that.

    I can see why you kept the News of the Weird in this one. That kilt groom story had my guffawing. Oh dear. It seems that a poop story gets me every time. What am I? 12?

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    1. I'm glad you were able to express your appreciation to your dad, too. Sometimes we wait too long, and the things we want to say never get said.

      If you're twelve, so am I. Poop and fart stories get me every time.

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  12. Lovely post. Happy Father's Day to your lovely hubby and mine too!

    I don't have a relationship with my father, but that was his choice. Sometimes you just can't get past all those demons.

    Love the old geezer's salute! And I learned they have camels in Australia, amazing! So, now tell me how much do human farts contribute? I'm just say'n there are billions of us! LOL

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    1. Thanks! I'm glad you liked it. I hope your hubby had a terrific Father's Day.

      I know what you mean about the demons. It's a shame, but I do understand.

      I'm sure human farts have some effect, too, but our volume isn't nearly as impressive as some of our animal counterparts. (Thank goodness!)

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  13. It's a shame that - with all the progressive concepts in modern-day society - men are still frowned upon if they dare to express their emotions. I wouldn't want the male species to become a bunch of wimps, but an excessively stoic faux macho facade is unbecoming. I really like your description of the old geezers.

    Unfortunately, Father's Day doesn't inspire any fond feelings for me. As much as I try to remember the good, the bad inevitably overshadows everything. Despite my own personal demons, I thoroughly enjoyed reading your post.

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    1. Stoicism is highly overrated. Those one-word sentences and stiff upper lips may have worked well in Gary Cooper and John Wayne movies, but not so much in the real world. To have a real relationship with someone else, we've gotta BE real. No facades. And part of that has got to involve honest emotions.

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  14. Another great post.
    Growing up in your family must have been a hoot !
    Love the Geezers story and the methane cow.
    Happy Father's Day to Smarticus he is one of the good ones.
    You chose well I did not.

    cheers, parsnip

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    1. Thanks. Yeah, Smarticus is one of the good geezers. (Generates his share of methane, too!) I'm very lucky... and I know it.

      Cheers!

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  15. You sure come up with amazing stories!!! Happy Father's Day to your guy!

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  16. I had to read the one about the preserved dead man and his festival twice to make sure I was getting it right ... That's one weird town all right.

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    1. Yeah, I've been to a lot of festivals over the years, but I can't say that I've ever been to one in honor of a frozen dead guy...

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  17. Happy Father's Day to your hubby as well. Fun post full of memories. What do Scots wear under their kilts? Oats! :-)

    Greetings from London.

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    1. And what does a Scottish cross dresser wear? Pants!

      Greetings back atcha.

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  18. My relationship with my father is non-existent. But for all those dads who have stuck around to love, cherish and care for their children, a very happy father's day to you all..

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    1. I'm sorry to hear that. Seems to be an awful lot of that going around. :(

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  19. Happy Father's Day to Smarticus! And who knew about all those carbon heavy camels in the Outback...I learn something new every time I stop here.

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    1. I'm glad you learned something new, even if it is a kinda weird something. :)

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  20. Geezer stand erect? They must take little blue pills.

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  21. On a serious note (yeah, really), when I first learned my father died in 2010, the very first thing out of my mouth was, "Huh."
    Fortunately, my stepfather was a wonderful man. I cried when he died.
    My father-in-law, likewise, is a wonderful man. He's faded significantly these past few years, but thankfully he still makes us smile.
    One of my biggest wishes in my life? When I die, that the first thing my son and daughter say isn't, "Huh."

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    1. Since you weren't close to your bio dad, it's wonderful that you had a special step father, and lucked into a wonderful father-in-law, as well.

      I don't think you have to worry about your kids saying that about you. Or anybody else saying it, either.

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  22. I seem to be one of those rare people who had a wonderful childhood, with 2 wonderful parents. It almost makes me feel guilty!

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    1. No reason to feel guilty. I think it's fabulous that you had such a wonderful childhood. Because of it, you've become a terrific old geezer.

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  23. Great post, Susan! I hope your husband enjoys Father's Day (and that you do too!). :)

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    1. Thanks! We had a terrific weekend. I hope you and your hubby did, too.

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  24. I've never been fishing, I've never been hunting (both sound too boring), and I'm more than happy to wait 10 minutes for my food... maybe I'm broken as a man.

    You know, my dad's never been much of a 'pull my finger' kind of guy. His humor is more dry. So if I pulled his finger he'd probably say, "You're adopted."

    Also, in old news, we definitely remember that dead guy festival. It's still going on, it's called Frozen Dead Guy Days, and... well, I don't know why it's a thing. But it is. Don't use that to judge us Coloradans. We're not all that weird.

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    1. Nah, you're not "broken;" you're the new and improved version. :)

      It's kinda cool that the Frozen Dead Guy stuff is still going on. Weird, but kinda cool. Or cold. (Seeing's as how the dude is frozen.)

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  25. And why is it that men can wait forever at fishing spots etc, but can't wait more than five minutes while the wife chooses a pair of shoes/coffee table/whatever.
    Skid mark on a wedding gown?? I hope that washed out.
    My first hubby was a 'pull my finger' man.

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    1. Some men think the things THEY want are worth the wait, but don't give a rat's butt about waiting around while his spouse does the unnecessary-to-him things she wants to do.

      My hubby and sons are all "pull my finger" kinda men. Good thing I think it's funny.

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  26. I'm sorry you had such a tough childhood. Fortunately, you still managed to become a wonderful person despite your hardships. I'm glad you and Smarticus found the right balance to raise your children to be strong and successful adults with good values. Excellent job, Susan!

    Julie

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    1. It wasn't all bad. There were plenty of good times, too.

      Thanks, kiddo!

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  27. I hope he had a great father's day. I've always loved that quote by Mark Twain. Loved the pictures. Didn't know they had cameras back then ;) Totally kidding of course.

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    1. It was a loverly Father's Day. I love that Mark Twain quote, too,

      HA! Yeah, we had cameras back then, but didn't have much in the way of colors...

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  28. Happy belated Father’s Day to Smarticus!

    I had an amazing dad. At one time he held down one full-time and three part-time jobs just to keep us all clothed and fed. Still, he always found time to read to me every night. Wish I’d had more years with him.

    VR Barkowski

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    1. Thanks! He has a terrific day.

      Wow, it sounds like you had a wonderful father.

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  29. I've always liked Geezers. :)
    I like your tribute to your hubby. Hurrah too, that the kiddos still look up to dad even though they're taller. ;)

    My oldest is an amazing dad (and husband). It's a good feeling to see, isn't it? :)

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    1. I've always liked Geezers, too. That's why I married one. (Doesn't have anything to do with age... it's all about the attitude.)

      Yeah, it really is wonderful to see what good adults our kids have become, and what good spouses and parents they are. :)

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  30. I'm glad you think the world needs geezers. I'll do my part. How ya been Suzy?

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    1. Mr. C!!!!! Hey, it's been a long time. It's great to hear from you again. All is well here; I hope you're doing well, too.

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  31. I'd never seen the Geezers before but I'm so glad you shared it. So true. Also the story about the kilt may be one of the grossest I've read LOL. If I were that bride I'd already be considering divorce.

    What a sweet picture of you in the Dark Ages and of Smarticus and your kids. I hope Smarticus had a wonderful Father's Day.

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    1. Woo HOO! I grossed out the lady who writes vampire stories! :)

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  32. Your geezers sound like old, courteous vampires.

    Love the pictures!

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    1. Courteous, for sure, but I don't know about the "vampire" part... :)

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  33. Hi Susan .. hope you had a fun time .. lovely set of grandchildren you've got - so I guess granddad and grandma .. are pretty special too!! Cheers Hilary

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    1. Hi-ya. Thanks. We've got so many wonderful grandchildren, we almost need a panoramic lens to get them all into one picture. :)

      Cheers!

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