Friday, March 11, 2016

About my Pop

Whenever I say let's take a picture he says oh you always make me do this. He can't believe you can take photos with "those things" (phones).

He's a little old American heavily influenced by the Italian man who wears pants that are at least five sizes too big for him held up by suspenders. He wears big glasses and in recent years has tended towards youth sneakers. He humors us when we all bring suspenders to a party in his honor. Or when some of us go rooting through his closet and reappear outside in his clothes.
He drinks red wine in the afternoon and sometimes at 2 in the morning if he is woken up and needs to go back to sleep.

He calls females "woman" and men "boy." He has six kids and many grandchildren and great grandchildren. We have all been called the wrong name more than a few times. His nickname is Hon.

He is a great storyteller and quick to laugh at himself.

He worked his ass off and is fully enjoying retirement - he loves to go to the fishing hole or to McDonald's in the mall food court with his crew of old man friends. They gossip and tell stories and watch women walk around the mall.

He also likes to just sit out on the porch or next to the window and think.

The best tomatoes I've ever had have come from his garden.
When I was sick as a little girl, he was very nurturing. I love Vicks to this day and associate it with his care and kindness.

Instead of saying here you are he says hee-yah.

If you say I love you when you're getting off the phone, he either replies thank you or very good.

He replies very good to a lot of things. It's a habit I've picked up.

If you take him somewhere and refuse the $20 he wants to give you for gas, he will hide it in your car and then cackle when you call him to tell him you found it.

When he wins the lottery he wants me to take the sick kids from St. Christopher's to Disney. He was a sick kid himself. I've talked him out of giving the rest to the church in lieu of buying/building a family shore compound.

He always wants to pay at restaurants and will try to arrange this with the hostess on the way in if you're not looking.

He had to leave school early to work and help support his family. He never learned to read, but he is wiser about the world and the people operating in it than most MBAs I know.

I don't think I'd be wrong in saying he's the favorite person of everyone in my family.

My Pop is 85 today. And I'm grateful I've had him for so long.


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42 comments:

  1. What a sweet post! Grandparents are so special and the older I get the more I treasure mine!

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  2. So sweet! Your Pop's young person shoes are the cutest thing ever!

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  3. Nailed it!!! Pop is winning. Great Blog.

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  4. Just beautiful. All true. Work ethic to infinity and beyond. Caring for G. God bless him.
    When the molestation scandal came out about the church, that cured him of giving money to the Catholics. Another Pop-ism- if God spares us. Little visits from all of us is better than one big party. Godspeed always to him. Love. Your. Momma.

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  5. love this! seems like your pop is a great one. my pop pop always used to drink white zinfandel..out of the box.. that classy man. always from the fridge and always with two ice cubes, no more no less. he also always asked how his hair looked, even though I never knew him to have hair haha
    cheers to your pop and a very happy birthday to him!

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  6. This is such a sweet post! Happy Birthday to your Pop! :)

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  7. How sweet! Happy birthday to him!

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  8. Stephanie, I love this post. It touched me to the core. My dad was 85 when he passed this week and I was blessed to have him that long, as well. Treasure all the moments...they go by way too quickly!

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    1. Very sorry for your loss. We are blessed to have my Dad/Pop and I am glad you could say the same for your Dad.

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  9. Happy birthday to your Pop, he sounds like an amazing man!

    I sure missing having a grandfather in my life and I feel really sad when I think of K never knowing one at all. :(

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  10. I love that you're writing this post on his birthday and not on a sad day. It sounds like he is always the most fun guy in any room. is there a rationale to his skater-esque sneakers? I bet they keep him feeling young.

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  11. This brought the biggest smile to my face. I particularly love the parts about he and his old man friends gossiping and checking out the women and cackling about the hidden $20. Pop sounds like the kind of person I would enjoy knowing.

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  12. Your Pop sounds like an amazing man. What a nice tribute!

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  13. What a sweet post. Your pop sounds like a wonderful man. You are very blessed.

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  14. I literally teared up reading this - made me think of my grandfather - who was also Italian & wore suspenders every day of his life... & grew amazing tomatoes.
    The "very good" at the sound of I love you is the most precious thing I have heard.
    Happy Birthday Pop

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  15. Happy, happy birthday, POP! He sounds like such a wonderful man, you had me tearing up with your sweet words about him. Cheers to wonderful men!

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  16. HAPPY HAPPY BIRTHDAY to your sweet Pop!! Loved reading all the wonderful things about him! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

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  17. I loved reading about your Pop! He sounds like such a fun guy. I have a special place for grandparents and their words of wisdom. Wishing him a very happy birthday and I know for sure he'll be surrounded by love! Enjoy!

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  18. Happy Birthday to your pop! Such a sweet post, and yay for suspenders!

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  19. I had a pop too. This made me rally miss him. It's so important to spend time with our elders. this is such a sweet tribute!

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  20. I love your Pop.

    I no longer have my grandfathers but I do still have one grandmother. I feel so lucky that at 38, I've had her as long as I have and that Erica gets to know her, too.

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  21. This is so beautiful and I enjoyed reading about your Pop!
    Happy Birthday to him!

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  22. Awww, so sweet. Happy birthday, pop!

    I was only close to my mom's mom and she passed away when I was 18 (her husband died when my mom was 16). My dad's parents lived too far away and they were great, we just weren't close. I'm always envious of good grandparent relationships. I'm glad my kids will have that.

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  23. Your description of him is beautiful and so full of love. THanks for sharing him with us! Hope he has a great Birthday!

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  24. They watch women walk around the mall!! That is hilarious! Happy Birthday to him!!

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  25. Your Pop sounds like such an awesome man, and I love that he wears suspenders! I also want to drink red wine with him in the afternoon or at two in morning :)

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  26. Happy birthday to your Pop!

    I love this post! It makes me miss my own grandfather (though I'm very lucky that I had as many years with him as I did).

    Also, the hiding money thing is something my uncle does (and my grandfather used to do it as well). Haha.

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  27. I love this! Happy Birthday, Pops! You are both blessed.

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  28. Happy Birthday, Pop!!! He sounds fabulous! I love that he hides money in your car, my mom does that. Suspenders really need to come back....and to more than just the hipsters.

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  29. All the feels. Happy birthday, Pops.

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  30. This is the sweetest. I love him just from this post!

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  31. I adore this post! I love him in the skater shoes!

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  32. I love him! He sounds like a hell of a man. I love grandparents with character; I smiled throughout reading these because older people are often complicated and without a filter. And you know what? They can be. :)

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  33. This is so sweet. I like that he replies "very good" to when you say I love you. I mean how cute is that? Personally, I think those people who have been schooled by life are much much much more wiser and smarter than the MBA folk. My mother barely graduated high school and I think she knows a whole lot. I could never outsmart her when I was a teen because she was always two steps ahead of me every time. Anyhow, happy birthday to your pop! Now I know where you get your humanistic and humorous personality from.

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  34. awww i know i am late but happy belated birthday to your Pop! he sounds absolutely amazing.

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  35. My paternal grandfather passed away before I was born, so my maternal grandfather was all the more important to me. I miss him. This is such a sweet , loving tribute to your Pop.

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  36. I love this post so much that I had to get on my phone to comment because my desktop wasn't working! Your Pop reminds me so much of mine, who passed away 9 years ago. This was a lovely tribute to him, and brought up some sweet memories for me. Love your blog btw!

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    1. Thank you Laura! Consequently I have no email attached to your name so I hope you check back here!

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  37. Wow - I loved this. Such sweet stories about your pop . . . they made me smile! And 85 - that's incredible! Here's to many more!

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