Today is my dad’s birthday.
And my father-in-law’s.
And John Lennon.
And lots of other people too.
But today I celebrate these three.
My Dad was a farmer in an area he described as being rather tilted to one side, served in Hawaii in World War II, mended farm equipment for his neighbors waiting for the factory piece to arrive, and had smile wrinkles. He married late in life and never complained about his young very inexperienced bride’s cooking. Like his father and uncles, he thought about tools to make his work easier.
My father-in-law was an OB/Gyn doctor in a moderately sized town in Wisconsin. He did a lot of cooking, was upset if there was no food left on the table…thinking someone had gone hungry….and enjoyed Pink Panther movies. He also had six children but was fortunate enough to have two daughters instead of the just one of my father. (Maybe I made up for it by being more challenging or creative or something)
John Lennon was born in England and had musical talent. amplified by his band members composing such wonderful music—in my opinion as beautiful as some of the classical masters. His music entered my life in junior high. Although I enjoy many kinds of music, the lyrical quality of the instrumentals continues to captivate my ear.
As executor of my parents’ wills, I had the task of disposing of the household contents. I kept some things my brothers thought commonplace.
One tool was a baling twine cutter. This was a blade from a mower with a loop of re-rod serving as a handle. These were stored on a nail on a beam in the barn. Square hay bales were tied with binder twine, a rough strong twine. Feeding the cows meant breaking those bales apart and putting sections in the manger in front of each cow.
And then there was his forge, the bits and bobs left over from his welding and repair jobs.
Sometimes I pick them up and hold them in my hand, remembering his strong square hands…hands shaped much the same as mine… my legacy from him along with my curly hair.