Thursday, August 03, 2006

I Miss My Dad

So I was driving back from a lunchtime therapy session (yes I'm back in therapy. Anyone surprised? Hands?) and it occurred to me that my father was a strange, complex individual.
Frank K. drank himself to death. It took a long time but culminated around Christmas in 1977, when his overtaxed liver was put into shock by a bite from a rum muffin. Had this not happened, he was already living on borrowed time - he had been diagnosed with lung cancer previously and was way past the date they had told him THAT would kill him. He was in his mid forties.
Frank often said appallingly racist things, mostly about African-Americans, but he listened almost exclusively to Blues and Gospel music.
He was an ex-sailor with more than a few tough-guy tattoos, and straight as hell, but he went into the hairdressing business. I suspect he was trying to get chicks.
He divorced my mom after a steady year-long screaming-match argument, but he once told me that my mom was the only woman he would ever love.
After his death I found a box in the closet which held his erotic short stories, with illustrations. The illustrations were terrible and the stories, typed on onion-skin paper, were not well-written. But having been brought up by strict angry catholics and leaving home at 15 to join the navy, it amazes me that he could write porn, or for that matter write at all.
Even as a kid I knew this guy was a terrible parent and my best chance for survival would be to move out of the house as soon as I could, but I miss him and I treasure his occasional appearance in one of my dreams. Sure he was flawed. Aren't we all! At least he wasn't boring.

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