Let the other guy be the bastard

daddy-and-meLet the other guy be the bastard. One the many aphorisms my dad, born 103 years ago today, would declaim. It was always one of my favorites. It fit into my world view more comfortably than “if you’re going to be a rat, be a long-tailed one,” with his dubious attribution to my saintly grand father.

I heard hopeful echoes of this sentiment in “love trumps hate.” In fact, I have heard more about “love” in the public sphere recently than I have since I was 15 years old and a participant in the Summer Of Love, albeit from PA. I was heartened by this. It saddens me, but would not surprise him, that another of his other favorite axioms describes what I anticipate most after this election, “Let’s live a while and see injustice done.”

Daddy was an interesting man, certainly the most influential person in  my life. He was brilliant, charming and the most well-read person of his generation I knew . He was completely uninhibited by consistency, without a nod towards Emerson whom he found effete.  His thoughts were delivered with no concern for constancy.

Happy Birthday, Daddy, and as you often said, “You’ll never know what you’ve done for me. You’ll  never know.”

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