When my father passed away four years ago, my brother and I promised to keep the blog alive. And we are not doing that very well... for various reasons; some reasonable, some not so reasonable. I will not make any more pledges to post more often, but (as this post demonstrates) will visit from time to time and share my thoughts.
I think about my dad a lot. Music usually brings him to mind, but there's so much more... driving my car, hard, the way a good German sport sedan with a 6 speed manual transmission was meant to be driven... or a good article that makes me think deeply, and then wonder what my dad would have thought of the article... and there's hockey. I'm not going to expand on hockey, because we didn't share the same favorite team and that, at some level, was a source of frustration for him. Music, most of all makes me feel close to him. He was never a musician, but knew every guitar lick from arguably the greatest Rock and Roll songs of the 50's, 60's and 70's. And he loved nearly every genre, from Bach to the Blues to the Beatles and more progressive artists as well. Van Morrison was one of his favorites and he is one of my favorites as well.
Before joining the Navy, 31 years ago, I spent a couple of months living with my dad. I worked at a music store and got a decent discount on CDs... and CD's being all the rage back then, my dad took advantage of the opportunity to expand his collection. I spent more (of my dad's) money on CD's at work than I made. I believe he bought a copy of every Van Morrison CD we had in the store and more than a few other CD's during those two months. I would get home from work, turn over the latest buys... and we would listen to the CD. I vividly remember those times, the music and the mood. We really didn't talk, but we shared time and a love of the music we were listening to in a way that I've never experienced before... and will likely never experience again. I have some hope that I may share something like that with DN4 (my dad's GDN6). She is really talented, has earned numerous awards and has literally performed at Carnegie Hall. And she's a lot like her Grandpapa in so many ways.
All things considered, if a favorite hockey team is the only thing worth mentioning that we didn't agree upon, our relationship was pretty damn good, despite the many miles that separated us. We had a mutual appreciation for the finer things in life; ideas, values and people that brought us more than contentment... they brought him and still bring me happiness. I hope you are all well... if you're reading this, you probably followed my father's blog and still get notifications of updates, which made you important to my father... and important to me. I know his memory lives on in this blog and our collective memories.