Today would’ve been my Dad’s 69th birthday. Happy Birthday Dad! I wish he was still here. If he was still alive, I’m almost certain he would’ve driven to Dallas from Albuquerque last night and stayed until Monday. He would’ve driven straight through, calling me when he got to the Grapevine Mills Mall outside of Dallas, to tell me he was going to get out of the car to stretch his legs, which in my Dad’s language meant shop. That guy loved to shop. He loved to shop for pretty much anything and pretty much any store.
He also had a fondness for newspapers. He read several every day: The New York Times, The Financial Times, USA Today, a local paper—The Albuquerque Journal or the Dallas Morning News—depending where he was; and sometimes The Wall Street Journal. He’d been known to write letters to the editor of The Financial Times. He wrote a letter about Maureen Dowd’s book Are Men Necessary? He praised that book and spared with some other letter-to-the-editor writer who thought Dowd’s book was junk.
To my knowledge, Dad never read that book. He thumbed through it, got some good passages under his belt to wield into his letter, but didn’t read the book cover to cover. He did however gift that book to me. So it was my job to read it. Dad gave me the hardcover version with the clipping of his letter to the editor messily folded between the cover and the book’s creamy first page. See how I’ll never forget him? He did stuff like that all the time.