Today is my father's birthday. I've said before, and I'll say again, that my father is my hero. I hope to be the kind of man he is. I hope to be the kind of father he is. I hope to be the kind of brother, son, husband, and friend he is. He's not perfect by any means, but to my knowledge only one person in history has any claim on that. He has made mistakes, and poor decisions in his life, but he's learned from them and grown from them. In the processes he allowed my brother and I to learn and grow from his mistakes, which allowed us to avoid having to make those same mistakes ourselves. Not that we always did avoid them. He's also been wise enough to know that you don't just teach your children, you also learn from them. It's been a two way street my whole life, even when I didn't appreciate or understand it.
But enough with the sentimental crap. I've written it before, and it doesn't get more true the more I say it. There's a lot of fun that I've gotten from my dad as well. My taste in music is largely influenced by my dad. There's a reason that I still think The Who is the greatest rock band ever, and that U2 is as smart as they are savvy. Thanks to him, I appreciate Robert Johnson and BB King. There's very little music that I can honestly say I can't stand, because he taught me that even in bad music there can be fun stuff that makes it worth a listen. Even as he went from working in a guitar store to being an accountant, he never once questioned the "sensibility" of choosing the arts as my profession. (Honestly I think he likes being an accountant though... which makes no sense to me.)
Yes, my dad is everything I want to be... a snob when it comes to beer, music and books; a political didact, opinionated, curmudgeonly, passionate and inquisative (and prone to using large words when it suits him). I'm proud of him, and I'm thrilled that he's proud of me.
Happy Birthday Dad! I love you.