So I grew up with a dad that always made weird words up for things. For starters, my parents wrote down my first word as “fawbooty”. What, you don’t know that word? It’s totally a real word. NOT. It was what I called a strawberry. Or at least I think that’s the way the story goes. But we call strawberries fabooties regardless of the elaborate story told about it.
A basket at the store-its a buggy. Your vehicle-it’s also a buggy.
Wally World, humdinger, “eyiyi”, strugglin’….. the list is long and, truly, quite funny when put into context. So I thought I would give you a few stories to start your week off.
Also this picture because it may be one of my faves of him. P.S. He made that hat. Because my dad isn’t a normal dad. He’s extravagant.
My sister Emily has down syndrome. She is the epitome of a DS kiddo-even at 27. She’s happy and lovey. She has always been capable of quite a lot of tasks, but her speech is very lacking. There are a lot of words that we know pretty well and she gets her thoughts across pretty well, but along the way there have been a few words that she has used as “all encompassing” words. “Eyiyi” is one of those words. And, let’s face it, we all have some of these right. I mean, “cotton headed ninny muggins” isn’t exactly what most people say when they stub their toe. “Eyiyi” has become a favorite word for anytime we don’t know what to say. Drop something, forget something, mad at something, surprised by something….it really fits all of these scenarios. Try it sometime.
If you have called my dad in the last decade then he answered the phone in one of two ways: “Line open” or Hello followed by “Just strugglin'”. You see, my dad is no respecter of persons and he will give the same old song and dance to everyone. He could even follow the “just struggling” line with a story the could bring you great joy-its just that he can’t allow you to think that things are great from the start. He has to have that control over your emotions. That sounds like a terrible thing as I write it, but I have the same disease to be honest. I don’t start with such a Debbie Downer phrase, but control issues are a genetic trait I suffer from as well. Aside from that realization, it’s a good laugh that we have-and tease him for it pretty regularly.
My dad also has a knack for acronyms. Call it a dad joke if you will but he probably assumes it makes him appear smarter. He will stump you on these and deliver a punchline while being very proud of himself. I smile as I say that thinking of the joy that spreads across his face as you sit there stupefied trying to figure it out. Let me tell you how lasting these are: I don’t remember a single one off the top of my head because it’s all about the delivery and the ensuing laughter. They can be rather elaborate which I suppose is an actual reflection of his wittiness and great example of how he thinks on his toes. Although other times I believe its pure dad humor that he heard somewhere else and waited for the perfect conversation to drop it in.
In reality, as I sit here and think of the crazy things my dad has said that have been annoying over the years, its pretty funny. My mom told me that for years after my graduation I was still blamed for the trash not being taken out or the bag not being replaced. Was this a jab at me? No. It was never my chore to take out the trash-this was an easy way to throw me under the bus to take the pressure off of my brother (whose job this actually was). It was also an “eyiyi” moment. A moment that he wanted to be mad but used a little humor to lighten the situation.
Resilience. My dad was showing me practical resilience. I look around at the way my generation is viewed – as snowflakes. I think we get grouped together unfairly but if I say that I think thats exactly what you call a snowflake so its a catch 22. Anyway, I think each generation has certain things they can’t handle. Whether it be because it is new or unknown or just plain scary. More often than not it’s the fear of the unknown though. Or the lack of control-boy thats coming up a lot…who’s in charge here?! I have been told that I am resilient and that is thanks a lot to my daddy. Don’t get me wrong, I get fired up about plenty of things, but overall it takes me being consumed in stress (which looks different at all times in our life) to be broken down.
And when this happens I am not myself.
I don’t have the humor to release the tension in the room.
I don’t have the ……”eyiyi” to get over it.
But I have a humdinger of a daddy who can GMBOTRF. (Get me back on track real fast)
Love you Daddy.