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So, my dad’s birthday was Thursday. Let’s all agree that he turned 29. He’s the strong silent type.

He was never the type of Dad who could help us fix stuff (although, I take that back…there’s a bookcase that I bought unassembled that he helped me with after I stripped the original screws), but he is the kind of dad who would drive into downtown Indianapolis in the pouring rain because his daughter needed something to be picked up from the Indianapolis Star’s office for an urgent school news paper deadline (because I never, ever managed to remember to request these things early).

He was never the kind of Dad who surprised you with a New! Car! on your 16th birthday (and wouldn’t THAT have been silly, since I didn’t get licensed until I was 21?) but he is the kind of Dad who, while waiting with me at the Department of Motor Vehicles, turned to a staring toddler next to him and told her “Can you believe she’s (points to me) my daughter?!?” (and he’s also the kind of dad who wasn’t upset when I got into a big accident while driving his car five years later).

He’s the kind of Dad who made me the person I am today, and I thought about that every day this week when I poured a bowl of cereal to eat, because that’s what you do before you get to eat the donuts. You have to eat the “good for you” stuff (in this example, Frosted Shredded Mini Wheats) before the “yummy” stuff (although, Mini Wheats followed up by Entemann’s is just a case of win-win).

Happy Birthday (a little late), Dad.

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