FD 2K7 : Back in Business

June 17th, 2007

Well, it’s been a long old time since I have written anything here, hasn’t it?

I can think of no better time to try to return to a more impressive regularity like unto that of previous eras and therefore I hereby determine so to do.

The reason I have not written anything is not because there was a lack of notable events in my life to document or analyze here. Quite the contrary, in fact. My wife Ruth is no longer ‘with child’ since my daughter Elsie Rose was born almost five weeks ago.

She is, of course, a beautiful and delightful baby. She is not two months old yet and is almost sleeping through the night. Right from the first night she was home she has awoken almost never more than twice in a night and is now down to about one time per night. This amazing attribute is coupled with the fact that she is in general very laid back and happy and very rarely cries.

The boys’ reaction to her has been far better than could be expected of a 3.5 year old and an 8 year old. They both love her and are very good with her. They are gentle and careful around her and sometimes they argue over whose turn it is to hold her. They are also both good helpers. Gideon considers it his responsibility to stand by the changing table when Ruth is changing Elsie so that he will be instantaneously available to put the diaper in the diaper pail.

There have also been a number of post-worthy items which have now grown distant from me in the temporal dimension such as the two field trips I went on with Isaiah’s class, Isaiah going to camp, and my nephew Gryffin’s second birthday.

I was thinking the other day of some of the people I have inspired to publish information on the Internet on a regular basis. To, so to speak (giving in to the overwhelming popular use of the phrase thusly despite my aversion to the shift of the original etymology and bandwagonization of the concept and the term itself), blog. My father, my sister (I don’t know if I can claim any influence here or not, regardless she does so prolifically.), and more than one friend has either succumbed to my nagging or followed after my example. All publish some sort of personal account or commentary with varying degrees of frequency (Dad wins hands down. He was 99.9% daily till he started taking weekends off some months ago. Now he only publishes Monday through Friday, but does so with the same probability mentioned above.)

I used to do so. I have not done so for about half a year now. Here is where that changes back.

Today was my ninth Father’s Day (FD). Isaiah was born in March of 1999 so on my first FD Isaiah was not yet four months old, but this did not stop me from putting my finger to his tiny tongue with a taste of the spicy juice from my Outback steak. He cried, I laughed, and Ruth told me I was ‘terrible’. Eight years later I am still terrible, but Outback steak does not make Isaiah cry anymore.

We’ve gone back there every FD since. It’s become our tradition. This is the first time, though, Isaiah has achieved gustatorial synchronicity with his first experience of the place. This time his reaction was quite different. He’s become quite the bigshot ordering steak whenever it’s available. I did have to offer a bit of guidance when he asked for some ketchup to dip it in. He seemed to take my suggestions against such practice seriously because he did not put any of his meat in the french fry ketchup that was on his plate.

The day started right on time but only thanks to biological programming. My standard practice in awakening in the morning is what I call my five alarm system. My cell phone runs a program that allows me to set a number of alarms. I set five of them with standard times of 5:20, 5:40 am, 6:00am, 6:20 am, and 6:40 am with a possible snooze or two after the 6:40 alarm. (Yes, I know that’s kind of odd, but on the Roger scale of eccentricity it’s not too unusual.) Anyway, I forgot to bring my cell phone upstairs last night due to being very tired after a remarkable day that will be recounted here tomorrow.

It was the daily standardization of these times that allowed me to wake up without external prompting this morning at about 6:30am. I opened my eyes and saw the sunshine. Normally this causes an emergency reaction since I carpool and don’t want to oversleep. Today it produced the same reaction, but the situation was almost immediately reclassified when my groggy mind recalled that today was Sunday and our normal get-up time was much later than my weekday get-up time.

I let Ruth know what time it was and rolled over to sleep another hour or so before getting up to get ready for church. While I continued to semi-doze Ruth put cinnamon rolls in the oven downstairs, woke up the boys, and sent them in to jump on me in bed with their fistfuls of cards and a present. It is a manifestation of the casualization of our society that while the standard FD present a man would receive from his family in antecedent decades was a tie, it is now a polo shirt. At least for me it is a polo shirt. This year’s was a light color of blue that I like but would never have picked for myself. I gravitate almost exclusively towards dark colors in my wardrobe.

As we were driving down the road about half a mile from the building our congregation meets at, Ruth said “Do you think they’ll recognize you?”

“Who,” I asked, ” the folks at church?”


“Why, because I am wearing a light colored shirt, I have a haircut and I remembered to shave?”

“Yeah,” she replied with a grin.

My first FD as the father of three was enjoyable as the day always is to me. I did not take time to think any profound thoughts about what the day means to me, or the responsibility I have, or even to recall previous FDs other than the brief bits above, but it was a good day and I spent it the absolute best way I can imagine– with my family!