Happy Easter everyone.
Hope you found lots of eggs (if that is your thing)…me I am sitting watching The Pixies Acoustic – Live in Newport DVD with all the speakers going. Today being the day Jesus returned from his little trip has got me thinking of my Dad. Ya see Jesus is the father of a new religion and my Dad is well my Father (I now this is a bit of a stretch but I think of my Dad a lot and tomorrow is his birthday so I am thinking of him more). Before you start to wonder I should let you know that my Dad is very much alive so this isn’t going to be a creepy eulogy but rather some flattering comments about someone that is very important and about 70% responsible for the person I am today (the other 25% goes to my mom and 5% goes to TV….my childhood babysitter)
So like I said, tomorrow is my Dad’s 67th birthday. I have a very close relationship with my Dad since we worked side by side in a family business for 14 years. People can say they have spent every waking moment with someone but in the case of my Dad it is almost true. Many of the things that make me….me were encouraged by my Dad. When I was young I was introduced to some of the greatest music…..My dad never had a fancy stereo but we always had music in the house…stuff like Ella Fitzgerald, Thelonious Monk, John Coltrane, Teri Thornton and Miles David….There was also a bunch of county and western that I never got into but at least I was introduced to it. My Dad also introduced me to great movies…..the first film I remember seeing in a theatre was The Blues Brothers.
I could go on and on talking about more things he influenced me with but the thing I am most grateful was that he allowed and encouraged me to be curious and form my own opinion of stuff. I could tell you a bunch of stories about this (and I probably will in future posts) but my favorite example of this was when I was a teenager I was fascinated by black culture. I would watch black cinema and read books about black leaders. I am not sure how I got this interest but instead of discouraging me he exposed me to stuff that was amazing. We took a family trip to New York and in between the shopping and museums and stuff we took a subway ride “uptown” to Harlem and saw the theatre where Malcolm X was shot. We played basketball on a street court where some of the greatest “playground legends” that I was reading about had played and we basically checked stuff out.
I am pretty lucky because my Dad indulged me in a lot of my requests to see stuff. On another trip to NYC we subwayed out to Brooklyn because I wanted to see the areas around Flatbush Avenue that were featured in “Do The Right Thing” (still to this day one of the 20 best films ever made) we bumped into Spike Lee’s brother.
As I grew up I am not sure if I grew out of my black culture fascination since I still love many aspects of it and but now that I am a grown up I find there are not that many people I can share my interests with…….I am amazed how many people have no idea who Dolomite or Black Belt Jones is……..but my Dad does.
I saw my Dad last night and told him that for his birthday I was going to take him next weekend to Goodfoot and get him a pair of Air Force Ones.
He may be the only 67 year old rocking out AF1’s but since he is 6 foot 4 he will have no problem pulling off the look…..he may just look like a retired NBA star put out to seed.
Happy Birthday Dad (and Jesus!)