Your favorite Dad memory.

Happy Father’s Day!

I remember it pretty clearly. I was in first grade, walking home from school, and a strange car pulled up to me. In it was my dad. He told me to get in, and that we had to hurry. Fifteen minutes later we were at the movie theater, watching Empire Strikes Back on opening day.

Years later this sticks out as my favorite dad moment. He is still with me, I see him a lot, and there are no shortage of good dad moments. But back then he worked sixty to eighty hours a week every week, usually at multiple jobs. He had a family to raise and had to make money with effort instead of brains. As a result we’d only see him at the end of the night, or on the occasional Sunday. And then I’d have to share him with my sister and my Mom. This was the first time I can remember where it was just me and dad.

So in the spirit of Father’s Day share your best dad memory.

I know this sounds terrible but here it goes:

Once me and my Dad were on a long road trip. At one point while driving down a long desserted highway my Dad let me sit in his lap and drive the car. He…uh… also let me take a couple of sips of beer that he was drinking!! :eek:
Gotta love them 70’s man…

I have too many because I have a very close relationship with my father but one at the top of the list was my father leaning over the balcony of Krannert Hall to make sure he caught every moment of me walking in and going up to the stage for my law school graduation. He was a grinning like a monkey and didn’t go back to his seat until I walked across the stage (you were allowed to hang out on the balcony floor if you wanted to get a close view).

Sitting on the couch watching The Price is Right with him.
Ah, Papa. I miss those days.

Dancing with dad, with my feet on his shoes.

Chasing down spotlights in the sky. You know those spotlights for car dealership sales and such? We’d go out in the car and try to track down the location based on watching the light in the sky.

For my grandparents’ 50th wedding anniversary, Dad and I got up in front of the party and sang “Unforgettable.” That’s our song, and every wedding we go to, he comes and finds me and asks me to dance whenever it’s played.

Oh gosh, I’ve got a dozen of them. Really though, one of my favorites was the handshake.

Dad would put out his hand for you to shake, you’d take his hand and he’d launch into this speil:

“I’m from the Ajax pump company, we sell pumps, new pumps, old pumps, second hand pumps, bilge pumps, sump pumps, big pumps, small pumps, short pumps, fat pumps, yellow pumps, blue pumps, inflatable pumps, aluminum pumps, black pumps, white pumps, grass pumps, dirt pumps…” etc,etc ad infinitum (or so it seemed)

All the while vigorously pumping your arm up and down in a very exagerrated hand shake. He could go on for several minutes and never seemed to run out of types of pump, made them up, repeated them, whatever it took until you were finally begging for mercy. When he thought he had wrung as much mileage he could out of this old joke he’d end it with one final shake saying:

“Wanna buy a pump kid?”

Loved that bit. We all got it, even some of our friends got the Ajax treatment. We never got tired of it. I have no idea why. In the retelling it loses a bit.

My dad died in 1981 when I was just 21 years old. I’m sorry he never got to use the Ajax Pump trick on his grandchildren.

One spring Dad and a friend of his started sailing every Wednesday afternoon. My folks were divorced, and dad lived in a different school district, so there was no school bus for us and he had to pick us up from school every day. For a couple months before the end of school, he picked up my brother and I about half an hour before school let out and took us sailing with him and his friend. I remember I loved every minute of it. Dad would pick me up from middle school first, and then we’d head to the elementary school for my brother. Once, we got there as my brother’s class was lining up for something. Dad said, “You get his feet, I’ll get his arms.” We slung my brother between us and carried him out of the school as he called for help with a huge grin on his face and his classmates and teacher laughed.

My father was in the navy and he wasn’t around most of the time I was growing up. He was home on leave when I was around 10 or 11 and wanted me to help him hang a hanging planter for my mom in our dining room. My dad is drilling a pilot hole for the hanger and he tells me to go up into the attic and let him know when the drill bit comes through the rafter. So I go upstairs and climb into the attic and dutifully wait for the bit to come through. My dad keeps yelling and asking me if I can see the bit coming through and I’m yelling and answering him that no, I can’t see it yet. After a few minutes of this screaming back and forth, my mom casually asks him if he seriously expects his son to see that drill bit come out when there happens to that whole second floor thing between us.

I was 15 and we were headed for a family outing in the mountains north of the city. It was my dad, mom and little brother.

My dad pulls over on a two lane highway. Puts me in the driver’s seat, sits in the passenger seat and with my mom in the back nearly having a silent heart attack and my brother all excited about the change of drivers, my dad has me drive everybody the rest of the way for like 30 minutes at 50-60 mph.

There endeth my first driving lesson. I’ve loved driving ever since.

When I was a kid, dad and I had a blank book called “The Nothing Book” that we wrote stories in. We also used it as a journal for the vacations we took, and I illustrated the entries. We spent a lot of great times just sitting at the kitchen table, writing, drawing, and laughing together. We had one character in particular that we wrote about named Cowboy Dan. He had some Native American friends, the Red Rock Indians (not the most politically correct name, but at least they were friendly). Once when we were starting a new story, I wrote, “There once was an Indian named Cowboy Dan.” Whoops. We laughed until our sides hurt. I have the Nothing Book now. It’s fun to look through and remember.

I also remember playing computer games with my dad. We had an Apple II GS, but my parents would pretty much only buy me educational games (then they wonder why I’m a nerd). When I did get some non-educational games, I had to play them with one of my parents. It was all about quality time, you know. My dad and I always played a baseball game and King’s Quest.

My home town: at the grocery store with my dad, who was a teacher for many, many years. Walked past a cashier counting pennies; her lips were moving.

Dad leans in close. "15 … 28 … 12 … 36 … 108 … "
Her face clouds, she shoots him a dirty look, and starts from the beginning again. Dad comes back to me, chuckling.
“Who was that?” I asked, shocked.
“I don’t know,” he says, surprised. “One of your schoolmates?”
“No - I thought she was one of your students!”

We looked at each other, and then ran out of the store, giggling like loons.

Christ, I miss my dad so damn much. I’m fogging up even now. Four years on & my heart is still breaking for the old fart.

My tribute to my dad.

A nice thread, HeadNinja.

My dad and mom got divorced when I was five. He wasn’t around very frequently after that, and then he stopped coming around at all. I have no idea what’s become of him by now. This thread got me trying to remember him, and I came up with exactly three memories. One too vague to mention, just a feeling of him being there. Another one was me, him and my brother eating Cheetos and watching TV. The third, and best: I remember one day he took me and my brother to the beach. He took us across the street to a souvenir shop and let us pick out any beach toy we wanted. Apparently he was friends with the store manager; they stood there chatting, and I was under the impression that the manager was going to give us the beach toy for free. My dad had clout!

I’m sure Dad was around more than that, but that’s all I recall. It’s funny, how you never know which moments in life are just going to stick in a kid’s head. A beach toy is my dad’s legacy. :slight_smile:

My dad always gave me the impression that he did not really approve of me or my life. I knew he loved me, but he thought I was weird and twisted and I figured I was probably not the daughter he had hoped he’d end up with.

My favourite memory of my dad (up to this point anyway) is when, at my wedding, in Vegas, on Halloween night, he told me “I’ve…always been proud…that you always did your own thing.” Extremely warm words from him (he’s rather stoic, my dad). Meant a lot to me.

Nowadays we actually hug and tell each other “Love you”!

My favorite dad memory is when my mom kicked him out of the house. That was a nice and peaceful six months. . . .

So I’m enjoying all your stories vicariously.

I miss my dad terribly. He was a great guy. Like others I have so many stories, but one that came to the surface happened when I was 15 1/2.
I was on the swim team at school, and was an avid SCUBA diver. It was Easter week and we were camping at a California State beach campground north of Santa Barbara.
I had been going out and swiming 1/2-1 mile every morning for practice, and I had been doing some free diving.
Anyway this one afternoon, it was windy and cool, so I was hanging out in the motor home. I decided to go get a soda from the camp store.
As I approach the store, I can see a Ranger looking out to sea with a pair of binoculars. He is talking
“It’s a sail boat. It’s swamped, looks like two girls, no wait it’s a guy and a girl.”
Looking out to sea I can see a sail from a small sailboat flapping in the wind about 150 yards off shore.
I turn around and head for the motor home. I go in and change into my swim suit.
My dad asks Whats up?
I tell him that there are a couple in a swamped sailboat.
“Are you going to swim out and get them?”
“Cool” and he gets his shoes on to follow me.
Anyway I go to the beach throw on my wetsuit top, inflatable life vest, and grab my jet fins and hit the water. I swam out to the boat at full speed, and once there, get the sail down. The lack of wind resistance coupled with my additional motive power has us just out of the surf line in a few minutes.
I body surfed in with the girl on my hip, returned and brought the boat and the guy in with it.
Anyway when it was all over my dad came up to me and said words that made me so proud.
He said

He didn’t tell me not to go, he didn’t warn me to be careful, he did’t act worried. He knew I could handle it, and he had my back.
He made me fell 10 feet tall that afternoon.

I’m the oldest of three sisters, unmarried, with no children. My middle sister is married, and no kids.

The youngest sister waited until she was 34 to have her first baby. Dad was ecstatic when he first heard the news she was pregnant, as he was ready to chew his arm off to have a grandchild, although he never asked us “when will I see some grandchildren?”

The night my sister had her baby it was a long wait. Every so often my BIL would come down the hospital hall to give me and my mom and dad updates on how the labor was progressing.

We realized at one point we hadn’t seen him in some time and figured it must be getting down to the nitty-gritty, so my dad and I snuck down the hall and listened at the closed door to the delivery room. Suddenly we heard a baby crying, and it sounded just like it does in the movies. My dad turned to me, with his eyes suddenly turned into 200-watt light bulbs and said "Did you hear that? DID YOU HEAR THAT?"

The look of joy on his face will always be my favorite dad moment.

Isn’t Father’s Day on Sunday?! :eek: