These Are My People

Claire and I took a trip this past weekend, and I do mean a trip! We drove into the heart of downtown Dallas, Texas to attend the celebrated “Comic Con,” a convention devoted to fans of everything from Star Wars to Superman and X-Men to Back to the Future and every “cool and geeky” thing in between. Claire even dressed up as Wonder Woman!

At one point while we were enjoying the festivities and buying more than a few collector comic books in the grand marketplace, Claire turned to me with the biggest grin and with the most satisfied sound in her voice said, “Dad, look around! These are our people!”

I don’t think I’ll ever forget it. It was an epiphany of sorts that was bubbling around in my teenage daughter’s mind, this sense that different might not be so bad after all, that quirkiness and passion and fun can make for quite a fascinating world.

I remember years ago my wife and I met an older couple who were sharing their life story with us. When he proposed marriage to her, he said, “Darling, would you be buried with my people?”

It was his way of inviting her to join his tribe, his culture, his home, his world. And it clearly worked!

In this massive, crowded world of the 21st century, there is nothing quite like finding “your people”…even if they’re dressed as a hobbit with a long grey beard or are sporting a large red “s” across their chest.

There’s just nothing quite like it.


Father Knows 5-16-14

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Claire and I are headed out to the Dallas Comic Con this weekend, so let’s celebrate some comics today…

1.  Marvel Kids – the OFFICIAL site – With everything from making your own comics to playing a game of Hangman with the Hulk, we like this stuff!

Comic 1

2.  How Did Comic Books Regain Popularity?

3.  Create a Father’s Day Card with your favorite dad-like Superhero!

Comic 2

4.  Official Home of the Lego Marvel Super Heroes – need I say more!









5.  I was a big fan of “The Incredible Hulk” television show of my childhood.  Here is a pic from a scene that stars Eric Allan Kramer, the great dad on Disney’s “Good Luck Charlie!”, as Thor.

hulk_thor_0 (1)



Grandma & Gene Autry

Ber 2

It is the day after Thanksgiving and the kids are everywhere. There are cousins and hide-and-go-seek and stories of our childhoods and food galore and more noise than any of us could handle on a normal day.

If anything, it is a family week around the house.  My Grandma Ber is sitting beside me here in the living room. She is 86 and, always being cold, perpetually covered in a big blanket as we talk together about “the old days.” I have heard most of these stories before, but as we talk she tells me a brand new story. We are discussing an old western comic book that my nephew has opened here on the coffee table in front of us. Something about it reminds her of what she refers to as her “first hearthrob.” She tells me that when she was young she wanted to marry the famous cowboy singer and actor Gene Autry. There was just something “about the way he wore that hat,” she said.

I know I have said it before, but just a reminder here on this Monday morning that stories are everywhere.  My grandma has a history, a life, a brain filled to overflowing with 80-something years of memories…80-something years of stories and loves and passions and anxieties and prayers and questions and wonders.  I bet your family does, too.  There are people sitting right there next to you on the couch with something to remember, a memory that will not leave them, a moment in time that continues to nestle itself somewhere deep inside their heart and soul.  When it decides to live again, it is something to see.

And who knows, you might even have a grandma who once dreamed of a famous cowboy crooner who stole her heart from the silver screen itself.