Posted by: canaryinacoalmine | November 2, 2005

Secret handshake

He called. He rarely calls unsolicited. I call him back addressing the receptionist by first name,

“Hello (Blank), is XXX in?”
“Yes he is – how have you been? Can you hold, he’s in the middle of something.”
“Of course”

Without fail or pause he will always take my call even if to say, “I’ll call you back”. I picture him, he’s larger in my visions than he is in life. He’s standing in front of a room at a pulpit surrounded by men in suits and dark attire. His phone rings. Grasping at his pants and trying to slam “SILENT” he notices and stops his finger from pushing “IGNORE”. Adoration and love forces him to respond, he can’t ignore me, LOVE won’t allow him.

I’m usually calling for the sake of calling, to ask his opinion on a business situation, and to hear the soothing echo of his voice. I’m fooling the office and pulling a mask over their ears leading my coworkers to believe I AM talking to a client. We hang up and he’ll forget to call me back for hours. HOURS. He’ll hide the smile on his face and presume a starched business manner. Only the smallest smurf or rebel notices its existence then he’ll say,

“I apologize, that was my daughter.”

Yesterday he called, for no reason other than,

“Hi honey – I haven’t talked to you in a week.”

“Dad, Can I call you back?”

“Of course. Remember to practice your jump shot.”

He smiles
I do too, thousands of miles apart.

Growing up I always felt as though you were larger than you are. The man who could save the world and shield me from it’s wicked wrath. As I got older I realized the world you faced every day was scarier and harder than the one you had created for me. I began to understand and experience the sacrifices you made while you and Mom designed our family life. Now, I’ve grown out of the reach of your safety net and away from your watchful eyes. But I’ll always be your little girl.

Happy Birthday Dad!

All my love,
Red Tornado


  1. That was beautiful to read this morning. My eyes teared but it also has me smiling. Hang on to the special that you have with him.

  2. Aww… I hope you sent that to your Dad. Or, does he read your blog? If so, I’m not sure who is braver, you or your Dad!
    Anyway, it’s a sweet sentiment. It’s nice to be close to family. In the end, family is all that really matters.

  3. Alison,
    I am glad I made you smile and remember that special bond.

    He only reads it when I tell him to and it’s always with much trepidation. There are some things a father doesn’t want to know about his daughter.

  4. Aw. Happy Birthday to your dad!

  5. Beautifully written, sister. Just lovely.

  6. Umm…I’m commenting under a different name so you dont know who this is. Yeah, is it just me or does everyone else have something in their eye? I only hope that some day, when life brings my daughter and I a littel closer, she will be able to say some of the same things. As a father, I can imagine what its like to read something like that. As children, we pave our own way and go far, far from the straight and narrow, even though our parents try and stop us. I guess they no weve returned when they see things like this. Thanks for sharing that with me.

  7. Beautiful tribute. I’m sure he’s as proud of you as you are of him.

  8. awesome.

  9. ok jess!! no need to call in the troops…i’m back!!

  10. That is so sweet.

  11. That was for all the great and wonderful dads out there! Thanks Sass, it was so nice to read that!

  12. Very informative site. Good job. think that will make relief: , my parents didnt told me about it , my parents didnt told me about it


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