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Tomorrow is Father’s Day and next weekend is Father’s birthday, so the old man has been much on my mind. I don’t recall how old he will be. I know one of the reasons why I can’t remember his age is I don’t like to face the fact he is gettnig old, frail, and – taboo word – in the dying process. Not that he is ill, but he has ailments. Father and I are alike as two peas in looks and temperament. When I use FaceTime it is like looking into the mirror of Dorien Grey. “This is what I will look like in twenty-five years”. Someone says he never has to wonder what i would be like ‘when I’m 64″ for he knows this way.  Next weekend is my high school reunion; I am looking forward to attending it, but not as much as a boat ride with Father and what brothers may come in for the occasion. There is nothing Father likes better than being with his family on his speed boat, chasing freighters on Lake St. Clair.  For the occasion I have made him this shirt :

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It is full up of nautical flags. His favorite jacket of all time is made from an old nautical flag. After forty years of wearing it the threadbare spencer is literally falling apart; this shirt is a close-enough thing and I hope he likes it.

I would like my parents to move out here for the climate and the advantage there are no stairs in the house. He is too polite to tell me he would sooner eat rats in Tewkesbury for how can I, his #1 Son (one of nature’s bachelors) ever hope to compete against Sons #2-4 who all have grandchildren? Not a chance.  Besides, he is quite happy where he is. He never complains – ever. He is one of the most content and fortunate fellows I have ever known. So happy Father’s Day and happy birthday too. May this next year be your best one yet.   I look forward to having a snort with him (no rubbish) and taking him out for the obligatory small chocolate cone.

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