A shout out to my dad who loved foreign films, new restaurants, emerging African nations. He loved to read and was a quiet help to many. Most of all, I thank him for loving me, his bright spot.
As I look at some of the problems in my working class neighborhood, my heart has softened about some of his flaws. Father hunger is a terrible black hole for people to dig out of. If no uncles or pop pops step up, it leaves people vulnerable to corrupt substitutes (Sandusky, Bishop Eddie Long)
So for all the men who are holding it down for themselves or other people’s children, I hope you take the neck ties and colognes, misshapen pancakes and sports items for what they really are: expressions of gratitude for giving us a love beyond valuation or measure. I’ve learned to look for love in repaired door knobs, advice on tires and water heaters and meaningful glances during the game. Regardless of race, sexual orientation, class, or ethnicity, men love as men love. That means that expressions of love from men are all over the map. See it, recognize it, affirm it.
Happy Father’s Day to all fathers and father equivalents, those in the military and those at home, broke and prosperous. If you don’t know who you dad is or where he is, say a little prayer for him anyway. He and your mom gave you something that you couldn’t give yourself. They gave you life.