Observations on quality time with my 84 year old father, day -1
• Before I left he said he found my book on writing book proposals for non-fiction. Uh-oh! I said I was researching it for some friends who had some non-fiction book ideas. Yeah, I lied. What can I say: he’s trained me well.
• Took nine bags of mom’s clothes to Goodwill before I left. “Father has the Plague” sister had about as many. Day before the same. A few months ago eighteen. That’s fifty-four by my count. There are still books, pots and pans, outerwear… Everything’s disposable in the end it seems. I saved mom’s leopard print Snuggie though. It said ‘Wild Side” on the box.
• My dad has a history of making inappropriate comments. My sisters have both had to tell him many times “Do not bring that subject up around me ever again!” One favorite through the years was my mother’s weight. “Do you know how much your mother weighs now?” “No dad, and if she wanted me to know she’d tell me.” By the way: she lost a hundred pounds in the nine months she was sick. She finally reached her dream weight. See, dreams do come true. Since he always has a malpractice suit planned he has all of her medical records. He started to show me a picture of the pressure ulcer at the base of her spine. “No dad, I don’t want to see mom’s ass! Can she die with a shred of dignity please?” He’s done stuff like this for years. One of the worst was when I was working for him on Canal Street in 1984 or 85 and mentioned that I was dating a girl who lived at 7 Mercer Street, less than a block away. He brought me out back to Howard Street and pointed at the building. “That building?” After I nodded, he said “Like father, like son.”
Another Norman Rockwell moment.
© Curt Weiss 2014