In case you’ve forgotten, tomorrow is Father’s Day. Still time to buy a card, take Dad out for a steak dinner, or pick up a nice tie. Dads really can’t have too many ties, and I think most of them expect another one. Pretty sure they’d rather have a vintage Mustang, but we all know that doesn’t happen.
I’m not a big fan of Father’s Day. Not only because my dad died way too many years ago, but because Ed’s birthday is always around the same time. This year, his birthday is the day after. Father’s Day on Sunday and his birthday on Monday. Really? I had the same issue with Bruce. His birthday was December 17, which is just too durn close to CHRISTmas. There should be rules. For both of them, I buy presents at one time, then just sort them out and wrap in different paper. Although there’s no wrapping except at CHRISTmas. Ed gets other occasion presents in a Wal-Mart sack or Amazon box. BTW, that’s how I get my “other” presents too. We have a no-wrapping except at CHRISTmas rule in our house. SO much easier!
They don’t have the same problem I do of having to buy a boatload of presents at one time, because my birthday is in September. The only thing close to it is Labor Day, and I don’t know anyone who looks on that as a big deal, other than the fact it’s a three-day weekend. My mom kind of messed up, though. Had she waited a few hours, I’d have been born on Labor Day. How appropriate would that be? I’m pretty sure she didn’t want to wait any longer than necessary because I was already about a month past my due date. They also told her she was pregnant two months before she really was, so after a year of being pregnant, she was probably sick to death of the whole idea.
The older you get, the harder gift giving becomes. When we were kids, we were perfectly happy with a doll or truck or GI Joe. I always wanted a train, but it wasn’t a “girl” toy, so I didn’t get one until I bought it for myself. Luckily times have changed, so if a girl nowadays wants a train, she’ll get one. Lucky them. I still have my doll from when I was about five years old. One of the best things my mom ever did was save that doll for me. Grace has her own stand in the living room and dresses up for all occasions. She stands well over two feet tall and has more clothes and shoes than I do.
It’s hard to find exceptional presents (like Grace) for someone when they get older. Ed really does fall squarely into the “man who has everything” category, so it’s a real challenge that gets worse every year. I got him an especially clever CHRISTmas present last year because I got him a bottle of James T. Kirk bourbon, complete with Kirk’s autograph. Would probably be more accurate to have Shatner’s autograph, but it’s still kinda neat. I also got him a bottle of Ten Forward Vodka. Vodka was sent into space, brought back, and they put a touch of that vodka in each subsequent bottle. So, Ed has a bottle of vodka that’s been in outer space. Silly, but seriously cool. Of course, he’ll never drink either one of them, so I don’t have to worry about him being hung over.
We’re at the point in our lives that if we want something, we just buy it. Years ago, I used to get on his computer after he went to sleep to see what he’d been looking at. No, I wasn’t looking for naked girl pictures, I was trying to find out if he’d been looking at some new ham radio or scanner or some other electronic toy. It just became too complicated to do all that subterfuge, so I told him if he wanted a new radio to send me the link and I’d buy it for him. Works like a charm and by the time the gift-giving occasion arrives, he’s normally forgotten he even asked for it. I do the same thing for him, because that way I’ll be assured of getting a new scroll saw or level and not a bottle of perfume.
Before his death, my dad had the gift-giving thing down pat. No matter the occasion, he just went to the drug store and asked the sales lady what was a good perfume. Since my mother never left home without some on, it was the perfect gift for her. I would have much preferred the train, but it is the thought that counts, right?
I had a strange thought the other day. I know you’re probably thinking most of my thoughts are strange, and you’re right. Every December 25th, you see Happy Birthday, Jesus, all over the place. In fact, I have it on a chalkboard in my kitchen. But what about Father’s Day? We don’t ever say Happy Father’s Day to God. We start the Lord’s prayer with “Our father who art in Heaven,” but I’ve never heard anyone wish Him Happy Father’s Day. Why is that?
I’m not stupid enough to think we can get Him a present, because really what would you get Him? Talk about someone who has everything. We can’t send an e-card because I’m pretty sure He doesn’t have a computer, and no snail mail Hallmark card because no zip code. I guess the only thing we can do is to thank Him for loving us, give Him our heart, and try to live our life like He would want us to. Not too far different from what we’d give our earthly dad, is it?
So, to all the dads out there (and in Heaven,) Happy Father’s Day. Thank you for being there for us, we love you, and we hope you’re proud of who we’ve become. And to my honey, Happy Birthday! (And would you mind celebrating it in July? Not much going on then and it would make my life a lot easier.)