Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Pac Man

My dad was a creature of habit. He was as predictable as the tide. Sometimes he surprised us, but not often. The structure of his life made for strong memories. It wasn’t just his radio setting on a shelf. It was the radio he listened to every morning while drinking his coffee, reading the paper, and smoking a cigarette. What do we do with it now? My brother and I laughed as we thought about how Dad would have taken this move. There would have been lots of coffee breaks and lots of "thinking" about what we would do next and how best to do it.

He was a letter writer. He wrote letters to everyone – most hand written, but sometimes typed on his old manual typewriter. He never made the switch to a computer. What a blogger he would have made! He would send clippings out of newspapers – anything that he thought was interesting. He would often write a short note on the clipping – sometimes not. Sometimes he sent the whole newspaper and you had to search for what he had found interesting. He was also a packrat – saving lots of those letters and clippings. Most of his collection of clippings and letters had to do with history, family or friends. What do you do with stuff like that? Some of it is pretty awesome stuff. Some of it is silly.

He often made copies of the clippings and made notes on the copies and sent them to everyone he thought would be interested. He copied old photos and wrote out the story explaining the photo. He was the family historian and his collection is priceless. But what do we do with this stuff now? I guess I need to make an album...
Jesse took these photos one of my grandfather’s military papers (the Bernecker papers) and one of things Dad kept for whatever reason – like the letters that I wrote back to him. I don’t know if my brothers wrote letters to Dad, but there were lots of my old letters. I can’t believe he saved letters from a silly little girl.

6 comments:

Inquiries said...

I love looking through old stuff like that. My Grandmother has TONS of it.(my fathers mother) It can keep me entertained for hours. I love to look at the stuff my Grandfather collected when he was in World War II.

The Friendly Neighborhood Piper said...

A packrat i'm not, i streamline alot, yet i do keep old stuff i should probably pitch, but on occasion, once every few years i'll drag it out and remember...which makes me think he probably did the same thing, especially with your letters. I know i would/will...with letters from my girls.

Bag Blog said...

I should probably mention that the Neiman Marcus tag was something Dad would pin on his overalls.

Fire Fox said...

Lou... I started to write a comment here but got out of control..extra long so I just made a post of it on my blog (you inspired me!). My mom recently moved and I certainly can commiserate with you on the things you've been experiencing! Hang in there... best regards,
Alison

Mrs. Bear said...

Ok...more tears...coming from a family like I did..well there was never any family bonding time...you guys didn't know it but when I first met your family I was thinking hummm what is this morning coffee time ( you know my story with my first few coffee pots) Your dad was the king of "Lets set and drink coffee" lots and lots of wisdom and teaching came from that coffee time...I learned much about family and "time together" from your family...keep that radio...in fact I'm having coffee right now as I do every morning reading your blog...I now have a big coffee pot...Blaine bought it for me...and the family tradition goes on....

Bag Blog said...

Anny, You and I certainly had some good coffee times together. I'm glad that our family gave you something profitable. Sandra learned to fight for a window in the backseat of our car. I'm sure that was a good thing.