I think about you sometimes. Especially during summer, when families get together for picnics and fireworks. When fathers wear T-shirts that read: “World’s Greatest Dad.”
I like those.
You’re the son I never had. You never existed, but I still think about you.
Mostly, I wonder what color your hair would have been. I have a feeling it would’ve been red—like your old man’s.
My daddy had red hair, too. And even though he died long ago, sharing his hair color makes me feel less alone.
I would’ve taught you baseball. Chances are, you would’ve been awful at it—just like me.
But I love the game. And I love what goes with it. The hot dogs, the twenty-five-dollar beers, screaming in the stands. Fathers and sons.
I’ve gone to many games alone. I would've made sure you didn’t.
I would’ve told you stories. That way, you could’ve had a million to tell your own redhead one day. I think all World’s Greatest Daddies need stories. Good ones. Tales that make their sons proud.
The few I have of my own father are precious.
Anyway, I’m not
a teacher, but I would’ve taught you. Things like: how to play “Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain” on a guitar, how to eat ice cream sandwiches, how to gig frogs, and how to speak slow when delivering a punchline.
I would’ve shown you how to bait a hook, clean a bream, and use words like, “I love you,” too much.
You would’ve learned to open doors for girls, and how to apologize to a woman with heart.
I would’ve learned from you. You would've discovered that I made a lot of mistakes.
But I would’ve told you that this world is not all Memorial-Day sunshine and flowers—even though I wish it were. That the problem is that people are selfish. Every last person. Even your old man.
But, there is also something in…