Sunday, June 16, 2013

Just Me and my Daddy Dean

Today is Father's Day.  After 37 of these things, you'd think I'd get better at remembering to send a card.  But in true Nazworth fashion, I wait until the last minute and always wind up late.  So instead of a card, it will be a blog post dedicated to my Daddy Dean.  That's what my grandmother always said I called him.  I don't remember it, and I don't know where I would've gotten it, but I like it. 

My dad taught me many things in my life. 

He taught me that most things can be fixed with duct tape and WD-40.  And if it can't be, then I should just call him. 

He taught me to check the oil and tires before I leave on any trip and that you should plan to leave by 1:00 if you're really shooting for 4:00. 

He taught me to pitch a softball, make a freethrow, sink the 8 ball, and shoot dice.  He taught me to ride a bike and roller skate and he tried to teach me how to drive a stick shift (or how to read the owner's manual and figure it out on my own). 

He taught me that humor is a common language, and he helped me master the art of a well-timed one-liner. 

He taught me about working hard and playing hard.  He taught me that you have to earn a win and that by earning it, it's even more meaningful.

My dad could shoot pool with either hand, play 18 holes one-handed, or beat you at dominos giving up a 50 point advantage. 

He loves babies, animals, fried fish, and Little Debbie snack cakes.  He always wore a pearl snap shirt, lambchop sideburns, and a baseball cap.  He's still rarely seen without a ball cap. He's flawed, just like the rest of us, but his imperfections and struggles have never stopped him. 

He's been a farmer, a night-club manager, a small business owner, a volunteer firefighter, a pilot, a race-car driver, a long-haul trucker.  But mostly he's just been my dad.  And I'm pretty damn thankful, every day, for that.

This is my dad. 

My dad was the first in his family to graduate from college.  I was the second.  And I'm proud to have graduated from his alma mater.

This is my dad and my mom.  Although it's Father's Day, I feel like she needs an appearance too.  He'd be the first to tell you that without Wanda, there is no Dean.  They just celebrated their 40th anniversary last month.

My mom, dad, and mom's best friend, Aunt Patti. They were not the "stay at home" kind of crowd.

Dean with a beard.  Still looks weird to me.
Cuddling with the catch of the day.

Dean, the farmer.  They're probably just fixing it with some WD-40.

The next four pics are of my dad and my brothers.  The first two are my oldest brother, JD.  And the next two are my other brother, Jimmy Ray.  

 I had to crop this photo to avoid indecency charges. Put a diaper on, man.

One of the things I'm most proud of, however, is that those boys turned out to be pretty spectacular dads of their own sons.

JD and Hunter: Way Back

Hunter and JD: Closer to now.

3 generations of Deans -- James Dean, Roy Dean, and Hunter Dean.  And a Wanda.

Jim and Isaiah

Naptime.  Dads are good at that.

My favorite picture of Jim and his favorite tiny superhero.

My dad is a goofball.  Although he takes great pictures, the ones I love most of him are those with goofy faces.

As you can tell, goofiness -- much like our tardiness -- is a family trait.

My dad can sleep anywhere.  Including in the middle of feeding me.

Luckily, by the time Hunter Dean arrived, he was a little better at it.  Or maybe we just snapped the picture too early.

This is my dad today -- whipping me at dominos. He'll admit that he's not quite as fast or young as he once was, but neither am I and that's okay. Because no matter how old I get, this is how I see us. 
Just me and my Daddy Dean.

Happy Father's Day, Dean-O.  I love you bunches.

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