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My Dad on Religion, Politics, Boyfriends, Spain, and Tarot

From a very early age, I knew that my dad was different from all the other dads of this world. He encouraged me to read The Exorcist when I was eight. He recited a Max Ehrmann poem to me when I asked advice about boys (Yeah, I know. Who the hell asks their dad for boyfriend advice?!) “Go placidly amid the noise and haste,” he said. “And remember what peace there may be in silence.”

My dad thought it was the height of entertainment to knock on his childrens’ bedroom windows in the middle of the night and tell them all about the ball of fire in the night sky. My dad has given away THOUSANDS of books in his lifetime, read HUNDREDS of issues of National Geographic while sitting in the bathroom, and probably hasn’t missed a SINGLE episode of Jeopardy since, like, 1984.

But it took me several decades to truly appreciate him for all his… noncomformity.

Trouble followed my dad like the smell of cigarettes and stale beer did at one time. He made mistakes. Big ones.