As I get older, I realize how much I cherish discussions with my parents about their lives. I love hearing their memories and what they have taken away from the years they have lived -- and despite whether or not I can relate to their opinions or if what I have become as an individual proves to be vastly different, I want to hear their stories.
So, in my plan to document them, I begin with my dad.
My dad is a big story-teller. He has a story or an opinion on everything, with which I don't necessarily always agree. For this Father's Day, though, I bought him a hard-cover book titled "Memento: My Life in Stories" by Michael McQueen.
In McQueen's heartbreaking foreword, where he recalls the series of events that motivated him to write the book, he also makes an interesting claim:
McQueen then fills the book with empty ruled pages listing questions at the top. He asks things like: "Who was your most influential teacher and why?" / "What was your first job and how much did you get paid?" / "What is your favorite sport? Why this one? What game or event was the most memorable to you?" / "Who and what were your biggest political and religious influences?" / "Do you believe in miracles and why?" / "How do you define success? Has this definition changed over time?" / "What do you remember about your grandparents?" / "Can you describe where you were when man walked on the moon, JFK was assassinated, Princess Diana died, and the attacks of 9/11 happened?" / "How did you feel when you first became a parent? What are some of your most vivid memories of your child(ren) as they grew up?"
I am hopeful that the collection of answers will provide a story and a very valuable keepsake. And yes, I realize this is a completely selfish gift, but I hope he enjoys it just the same.
To all the fathers in my life - my dad, my stepdad, my Papa, & my two big brothers -- I love you all.
Happy Father's Day.
until next time,