Monday, April 3, 2017

That Whole Dad Thing, Again

Every once in a while I circle back around to that whole Dad thing again.

At least in here. In my head it is a permanent awareness.

Watching the Final Four on Saturday. A number of times the camera cut to Bonifacy Karnowski in the stands, father of Przemek Karnowski, who plays for Gonzaga.

Try spelling those names three times fast.

Anyway as a dad-comrade-in-arms I'm looking at this guy thinking what is going through his head in that moment? He traveled from Poland to watch his son play in the final four and, even better, move on to the finals.

The fucking finals of the 2017 NCAA Tournament. It doesn't get much better than that.

Actually I was not wondering what was going through his head. I know what was going through his head. And heart. And soul.

Love. And pride.

If either or both of my sons made it to the Final Four I too would travel 6,000 miles to see them play. Christ, if I was dead I would resurrect myself from the grave, clean myself off as best I could and make it to the game.

But that is not the point. The point is I don't need to see Keith and Craig play in the NCAA tournament. I think about them constantly. I feel about them constantly.

I cannot tell you how often I stop and think about them. Most times I feel so proud and I smile out loud. Sometimes tears come to my eyes because I cannot believe these two men in my life are my sons.

I am so goddamn lucky.

The Dad thing is a weird one. Mom's are holy. They give birth. That makes them Numero Uno in the parental food chain. And rightfully so.

Mother's Day is treated like a religious holiday.

Fathers, on the other hand, are often depicted as goofy. Almost as an after thought. The perfect expression of that was made by Eddie Murphy decades ago and it always stuck in my mind. He talked about kids on fathers day giving dad a tie, and Faberge. You gotta see it; it is hilarious.

I feel good about my Dadness. Christ knows I was not perfect at it. Then again I deserve a fucking award for pulling it off the way I did. I hated my life, I drank a whole hell of a lot, but Keith and Craig were always number one on my hit parade.


When I got home from work my world changed. I got to play with my sons. To talk with them. To laugh with them. To live with them.

It was spectacular.

Both my sons are doing better in their lives than I ever did. Financially, and I think emotionally as well. I think both of them are living the lives they want or very close to it.

I take a little credit for that but not much. I gave them all the love I could, but they did the hard work themselves when they moved out.

The Dad thing is mystical and magical, underestimated and not given enough weight, in my humble opinion.

For me it has always been and always will be a spiritual thing. Deeply felt, gratefully appreciated.

I am rooting for Gonzaga tonight. How can I not? First appearance in the NCAA Tournament finals. That is huge.

I am rooting for Bonifacy Karnowski and his son, Przemek. I want to see the look on Dad's face if his son's team wins.

And I will feel like we are kindred spirits experiencing inexpressible love and pride, because Keith and Craig are everything to me, and my feelings for them run no less deep.

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