Speaking of good parents

(which is what I was doing in my post about Patrick Ness), a word about my Daddy.

Many of y’all already know how great my Mumsy is, because she is often lurking around the blogosphere, and because I talk about how she recommends me books, and because she sometimes guest-posts here. And I go on and on about Legal, Indie, and Social Sisters. But I don’t seem to talk about my father very much, which is weird because he is the best father in the world. In fact — this may be controversial but it is true — I’m going to go ahead and say he is a better father than Atticus Finch. That’s right! He just is this unstoppable force for good! He treats my beautiful mumsy and my sisters and me like gold. When I come home for Thanksgiving and Daddy drives to the airport very very late at night to pick me up, I will say, “Oh, Daddy, I’m sorry to keep you up so late,” and Daddy will say, “Jenny, there is nothing in the world I’d rather be doing than driving you home from the airport. I get to have a fun drive and visit with my beautiful daughter.” I can just tell y’all right now that it’s going to go down exactly like that, because that is the sort of thing Daddy says constantly. Last Christmas — he is very hard to shop for — I asked him what he wanted for Christmas and he said for Christmas he wanted me and him to go on some nice long walks around the lake and catch up and that would be the best Christmas gift I could give him.

When we have family holidays, Daddy sometimes makes as many as four different main courses, in order to accommodate the dietary restrictions of the various people attending. Also he can do everything. He brilliantly jerry-rigs the wondrously ancient car of Social Sister, which was mine until I moved to New York, in order to keep her on the road. He sews things. He built a possum trap and has caught like twelve possums to date. He rewired our whole house when I was little. He made Mumsy a beautiful kitchen table and a beautiful drop-leaf dining room table. He is the champion of programs and practice evaluation. In his youth, he taught himself how to play guitar, and he can listen to songs and figure out how to play them on his guitar just by listening to them. Y’all, because he can do everything. If he doesn’t know how to do something, he tries it anyway and usually succeeds.

When I was a small-size Jenny (and, okay, still sometimes now that I have grown up to grown-up size) and it was bedtime, sometimes Daddy would play his guitar and sing this song to us. He sings it better than Art Garfunkel. Obv.

The takeaway here is, my father is the best father ever made. Legal Sister, Indie Sister, Social Sister, and I are the luckiest girls in all the land. The end.

P.S. Okay, not quite the end. I just want to say, when I said that Daddy is hard to buy for and wants only love for Christmas, I do not want y’all to take that to mean that I’m not getting him a proper present for Christmas. Because I am. I have spent this entire year brainstorming proper gifts for Daddy for Christmas, and I rejoice to say I have come up with many. He’s going to get real presents for Christmas, and he’s going to like it.

45 thoughts on “Speaking of good parents

  1. Oh, I wish I were more eloquent than this, but all I can come up with is this emoticon: πŸ˜€ So, there it is. And here’s again, for good measure: πŸ˜€

  2. Aw, that was sweet! I have one of those Dad’s too, and although he does not catch possums, he does make homemade dinner rolls called grampy buns.
    We are very lucky girls.

  3. Aww! This was such a sweet post πŸ™‚ Your dad truly sounds like the most terrific person πŸ™‚

    Now, my dad, he doesn’t do any of these things. He can be as helpless as a baby and completely reliant on my mom for everything. But I still love him tons- why? he taught me the love of reading, introduced me to some really quality books. His sunny temperament, optimism, and generosity of spirit make him a wonderful dad and as I grow older a wonderful friend as well.

    • He is a terrific person! Your dad sounds wonderful too. Being taught the love of reading is one of the most excellent things a parent can do for a girl.

  4. Yup, all true, not even exaggerating a little bit. AND he is so smart and honest and integrity-laden. And good-looking! And makes the best bread on the planet!

    Jen, this is so sweet and very timely – Daddy retires tomorrow. It brought tears to my eyes.

  5. Your father sounds like such a wonderful man, and I can’t imagine that you could have done him anymore honor than by posting this to your blog today. I have a great dad too, and he has taught me much and loved me even more. There is nothing like knowing that your dad loves you and that he is a good man. Fantastic post today. It made me giddy with happiness!

  6. I call my dad Daddy, too! I am glad I am not the only one. I would have to take exception to your calling your dad the VERY BEST dad in the world as I think I have one that’s probably in the running, but I suppose that is an argument that will never end. Yours can be the best and mine can be da bomb.

    • Hahahaha, that argument indeed would never end! “Da bomb” is an excellent descriptor and one that my father would greatly appreciate. He loves that phrase and says it all the time. All. The. Time.

  7. Lovely, lovely post. WIshing many happy days in retirement for him when it sounds like he will be learning all sorts of amazing stuff in all that free time?!

    • Ew, no! They were making trouble. Also they are really gross and creepy. They look pathetic and even a little cute, but then you get close to them and they bare their scary-teeth and look like vampire possums all of a sudden. So scary! Nobody should ever play with one!

      • I was walking Thistle one day, back when I’d just gotten her and she had that unfortunate hair cut and was a bit scrawny, and this old guy down the street said to me: “Whatcha got there?”
        Me: “Oh, this is my dog Thistle.”
        Him: “For a second there, I thought you were walking your pet possum.”
        Me: “—”

        Isn’t that mean?! Poor Thistle. Lately she’s been getting lots of compliments, though. She even has a celebrity dopelganger: several people have said she looks just like Toto. πŸ˜‰

      • That is mean to Thistle!

        Okay, I’m glad to know you didn’t play with the possums with their needle teeth and scaly tails. I asked because there were tons of them where we used to live (farmhouse between two creeks), and when the landlord used to live there, he would catch possums just to look at them because he thought they were cool, and one time he looked after pregnant mother possum who didn’t make it, and he and his girlfriend took the babies around to local kindergartens and would pull them out of their pockets to amaze the kids. *I* thought the possums were ick, and it was sad the way they would keep frantically trying to cross the highway during mating season and there was a possum squish every half mile all the way into town, and freaky when our headlights would catch them in the eyes lumbering across our driveway at night and they wouldn’t even hurry because they were about their evil business and couldn’t be bothered, but because of my former landlord and his former girlfriend I know it is a matter of taste.

        I almost asked if you ate them.

  8. Wonderful post, Jenny! Enjoyed reading it very much. Your dad is really SuperDad! It is amazing that your dad listens to a song and then figures out the chords and can play the song with the guitar – that is so awesome!

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