I have a pretty awesome Dad. As a little girl, there was nothing more in my life that I wanted to do but to be like him. I idolized him. This brought about a lot of weird behavior on my part-trying substitutes for the adult things that I saw him doing.
I got to thinking about the silly ways I tried to be like him–which must have made him both laugh and feel honored. Here are a few ridiculous things I did as a little girl to try and be like my Dad.
1. I used to pray for a soar throat so that I may have a reason to carry cough drops in my pockets. Dad’s pockets were and still are filled with paperclips, rubber bands, cough drops, a tiny eraser, coins, folded kleenex and other essential items.
2. I witnessed a daily foot powder regiment with my father. So, I administered copious amounts of baby powder to my shoes–which I thought was the equivalent to foot powder. This created a gooey, sticky mess after running through mud puddles.
3. I memorized every line to every Beatles song ever written, so that we could discuss them on our “days” together.
4. Played simultaneously with G.I. Joe’s and Barbie so that the army guys would have equal face time with me.
5. Learned how to draw Kilroy, because that seemed to be the funniest cartoon ever, for all of mankind and into eternity.
6. Shined my non-leather shoes with shoe polish after watching my Dad buff his combat boots to a nice sheen. My socks, pant legs, hands and household items suffered due to my lack of leather vs non-leather knowledge.
7. Used duct tape to fix anything. And I mean anything.
8. We were timed as we did chores, motivating us kids to complete them “most rick-tick”. Presently, I have absorbed a habit of counting and timing everything I do-from how many times I stir the batter, to how long it takes me to walk across the house.
9. I never believed in Santa, the Tooth Fairy or the Easter Bunny. But, I sure as heck believed in the Clean Room Checker. He brought me a candy bar for a surprise clean room inspection. I still hope Biceps will one day take note of the cleanliness of my bedroom and leave me a candy bar.
10. I always wanted to know, up front, what the rules were and what was expected of me. It was better to get that out of the way, not disappoint or frustrate others and stay within the confines of societal norms. That is, until I reached my adolescence. Then, this knowledge was skillfully used to know just how far I could push the boundaries without crossing the line. I saw this skill as sort of a win-win. Have fun, but stay out of trouble.
They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. I think “they” are right. I love you, Dad.