I decided to take on the NaNoWriMo challenge this year. When I told some friends at work the first thing they said was – “You’re finally gonna write that book about your dad – right?”
My father was the only son of one of the best story-tellers who ever lived on Isabelle Avenue. My Grandmother could tell you the story of her trip to the supermarket and it would be enthralling. She had a sense of exactly what details would captivate her audience. She loved the attention and we loved the stories. I always imagined Pop growing up in her shadow and wanting to have a bigger story.
I was in about 4th grade when I discovered that most of the stories Pop told lacked the ring of truth. He exaggerated details and added “facts” of his own choosing to make things seem both more fantastic and more believable. What Pop never understood was that his life was really the big story. The man pulled off some crazy things. Absurd, irreverent, silly, bizarre – he was all of these things – almost all the time.
In truth, my pop was a complex person. He never grew up, he never wanted to – Peter Pan in all his glory. His escapades were fueled with Budweiser and a group of strange and wonderful friends who were all to willing to follow him on his journey like a modern-day pied piper.
What I want this project to be is fun and ironic – this is not an examination of the difficulties of living with Pop’s idiosyncrasies. I want this to be an exploration of the irony, the wonder, even the tenderness of a man who marched to his own drum (or maybe his own tuba).
Come along with me – there’s a good story in it. I should know, I come from a long line of story tellers.
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So cool! I love this! Now I need to see how much I have missed.
Thank you – I think we both had interesting dads – interesting for very different reasons 🙂
that’s true, but to grow up with them and have these memories is really what it’s about, great stuff here!
I like your photo of your grandma at the Van Nuys Auto Laundry. I would like to ask your permission to post it on my blog, Here in Van Nuys?
That would be great – Van Nuys is where my grandma’s family ended up living after leaving the midwest during the depression and the dustbowl. I think she went to high school there – I have her annual at home. I have always loved that shot, so dressed up at the car wash.