I never got into coffee when I was in high school. My father gave me a sip of his once late at night in a dinner in the middle of central Jersey, and, as if I found out it was poison, I spit it out onto my napkin, a harsh stain right in the middle where my hack had aimed.
Obviously, that later changed in Chicago, where I grew an almost-dependancy (but really, a love) for coffeeshops, french presses, and late night diner coffee at Clark’s up north, banking on it to get me through another essay-filled night with TJ, Mike, Travis,Emily, etc and all those other last minuters during college. It had it’s ups and downs, but that’s another scene in my life for another day.
And though I only had a handful of cups of coffee with my dad, he was there with me to play my first real rock album (All Things Must Pass by George Harrison, my favorite Beatle), take me to my first concert (Weird Al for the win!), brought me to my first broadway show (Les Miserables, which if you know me, is one of my obsessions…you guys know…)and supported my love for theater, music, and the arts. My father and I are that rare pair that, when I was growing up, I never had to drown out his music, because more often than not it was my music too. I took the old and the current, much of which my dad does as well, and filled my musical brain with endless hours of melodic information.
Besides music and theatre (which I have out-obsessed him with), he was right next to me on my first traveling adventure. We really never did any big adventuring until my mother passed away. I loved my mother more than the sun loves the sky, but in my father and I’s own different ways (him just around 50 and me at 10), we knew life was fleeting, and though he never said it in words, my guess is he wanted me to realize that early.
Low and behold, I’ve found myself accidently swimming in a river next to baby crocs in Florida, in the alleys of Liverpool where my musical heroes grew up, dirt roads up huge mountains that peaked through the clouds over Costa Rica, and roadtripping the Pacific Coast Highway from Los Angeles to San Franciso. Sometimes he had a plan, sometimes he didn’t. Just like life should be lived, and he passed it down to me.
This is just a small piece of the story of my father and me; an outline of a chapter in that book, because the good times and the bad times could fill up a manuscript.
As Father’s Day approaches, I must admit I don’t think of him anymore or any less, because he is constantly on my mind throughout everyday of every year of my life, and will continue to be. But I guess it is Father’s Day, so I will let whoever reads this know that my love for my father is as limitless as life itself.
At Mara’s for Father’s Day Weekend, we have a special menu for the men in your life, including a hardy breakfast, a seriously stacked burger: onion rings and all, a toaster for a perfectly filling lunch, and a very peanut butter-y milkshake (yes, there is a peanut butter bar in it). So come in all weekend long for a good meal and quality time!
Dad, if you’re reading this, here it is. Love you and Happy Father’s Day. “Bring on your wrecking ball”
- Dave Karp