I've been trying to figure out how to write an appropriate blog about my dad for Father's Day. He's just so damn cool, I don't know where to begin. I'll start with the basics:
His name is Steve. Stephen, actually. Not Stephauuun or Steffen, Stephen pronounced "Steven." He's the oldest of 5 kids and something tells me he was a pretty awesome big brother. He's the kind of person that has an answer for everything. Not a jerk, know-it-all answer but a real, thoughtful answer. He's like an encylopaedia but more fun to talk to.
Dad and I never really talked a lot when I was in junior high and high school. I think part of it was because I was a teenage girl and he was, well... he was my dad. Teenage girls don't talk to their dads about heavy stuff like crushes and zits. I think the real reason we didn't get along that well until I moved out was because we're very similar. We're both stubborn Germans who rarely admit when we're wrong. When we're interested in something (cars for him, bands for me) we get REALLY into it and find out everything we possibly can about it and then tell everyone we know every detail about it. That's charming, right? Right...??
Dad is pretty much superman. I don't know how much money our family has saved on car repair, plumbing, electrical stuff, remodeling and glasses repair because of him. He knows how to fix everything. I mean everything. If he doesn't know how to do it, he'll find a way to to figure it out. He built over half of our house with the help of his dad and some buddies. He designed it, bought all the stuff for it and built the whole damn thing. Pretty impressive if you ask me. I'll post pictures in the near future. The most impressive part about that is that he got his friends to help him. That means he's likable AND capable. DOUBLE WIN!
One of my favorite memories of daddy/daughter bonding was the day after the 2004 election. It the first time I could vote and I. Was. Excited. See, our family isn't a sports family, we're a politics and religion family. We get excited about local elections and church functions. Anyway, the night of the election, I was at the U of M with my fellow University Democratic Farmer Labor Party members, watching the polls at a bar. This was also the first time I ever got drunk. Needless to say, it was a painful morning after. I had crashed in a friend's bunky bed in her dorm room and I woke up with that horrible, dead animal taste in my mouth not knowing the results of the election. If you recall, Ohio and Florida really effed things up for us and made for a long night of polling. So, with pants covered in Kerry/Edwards bumped stickers, a Women for Kerry t-shirt covered in Kerry buttons and a raging headache, I bussed back to my parents' house. Some jerk in front of me kept lambasting Kerry and rubbing it in that he wasn't going to win even though he hadn't conceded yet. I was too hungover to argue with this guy who appeared to be homeless, hacking up a lung and riding the city bus at 10am (the perfect demographic for Kerry) so I pretended not to hear him.
I got home and sat on the couch with my dad, watching the news, waiting for Kerry to make his speech. I'm not sure if it was the fact that I had worked so hard on the campaign or because I was painfully hungover or because it meant four more years of Bush as our president but I started crying during the concession speech. It was embarrassing. I cry on a fairly regular basis for various, ridiculous reasons and when it gets too hysterical, dad yells at me. I'm sure it's because not only is it pathetic to watch a grown woman hyperventilate from crying so hard, it's just plain annoying. He didn't yell at me this time. This time, he just hugged me and told me about all the elections he's gone through and how disappointing it was to watch Reagan win back in 1980. Then he told me to go take a shower and brush me teeth because for the love of God, woman, you smell to high heaven. He didn't really say that, but he was probably thinking it.
There's so much more to say about my dad. I will never hear the Beach Boys (or Leonard Cohen or Roy Orbison or Jerry Lee Lewis or the Mamas and the Papas or ABBA or anything KOOL 108 played back in the day, really) and not think of him. He helped me fix my car from 1000 miles away while I was in Denver. He's driven across the city at the butt crack of dawn multiple times to save me because I locked my keys in my car. I could go on, but this blog is already really long and I don't want my mom to get jealous because her's wasn't this long. What I'm trying to say is that my dad is awesome and I'll be lucky to find a man even close to being as honest, intelligent, hard-working, faithful, ingenious and supportive as him. I love you, dad!
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