1. Today, February 15th, 1993, my dad died. He was 48.
  2. I was 17. He got killed in an accident overseas. I remember certain things: my mom calling in the middle of the night, me screaming, going home, being numb, seeing a dead body again, knowing it was my dad...just shock upon shock.
  3. I distinctly remember my mom crying and telling me that my dad had died, and there was this sound of glass breaking in my head, and all I could do was just make jokes for the people in my dorm that had gathered around.
  4. It's why I'm not a fan of Valentine's Day, or any holiday for that matter.
  5. To this day, I remember very specific stuff about his death. That stuff's for me, and me alone, and not for here.
  6. However, sharing that with you all is somewhat cathartic. It is, however, not intended to derive sympathy. I can't stand that.
  7. As I get older, I find myself wrestling with the same set of questions (and I'm only saying this out loud because it's rhetorical for me. It's not intended to provoke a discussion.):
  8. Would my life have turned out better, worse, or the same if he were alive?
  9. Would I have pounded myself into oblivion to finish school early in order to help out the family with tuition?
  10. Would I have fucked off, been lazy, and have done nothing with my education?
  11. Would I have used humor as a defense to the abject cruelty of life, or just let shit happen to me and acted like a schmuck, whining about everything? (like right now, perhaps?)
  12. Would my perspective on life have changed so radically that I wouldn't be the person I was today? Was my dad's influence on my life that powerful?
  13. I don't know. It's been 23 years, and the weirdest thing is that I don't necessarily miss my folks. I miss their counsel and advice, but not them per se. They were troubled people, and I think they're happier now not having to deal with their own problems.
  14. I honestly just wonder if I would been the same.
  15. I wonder about this because I like who I became within the shadow of their absence. I feel like I learned self-reliance, and sometimes, how to live on guts alone. I didn't have to worry about them anymore, as I think that they're in a better place.
  16. So...I hit the hay, and say "goodnight" to you, faithful reader, and to my dad, who would be 71 this September.
  17. Thanks, Pop. I can't say that I miss you, but I can say that I love you, and we are doing okay. You'd either be proud of us for how we turned out, or had something critical to say.
  18. Today, I'm leaning towards: "proud".
  19. Ta-da.