Totally positive stuff my dad says

Published 12:47 am Saturday, April 5, 2014

There’s a pretty funny site on social media called “(Expletive deleted) my dad says.”

It’s off color and most of the posts read like a man wrote them, but the author claims to be a girl.

My dad’s language isn’t nearly so er, uh, colorful as that dad’s, but he does have a tendency to use the same phrases regularly.

More than a million times he must have said to me, “It doesn’t matter to us what you do, so long as you do your best. If you want to go dig ditches, just make sure they’re the best damn ditches that have ever been dug.”

Ask him “How are you,” and he will counter, “Today’s the best day of my life.”

Hint at a less than perfect day, or complain about getting older and he is quick to remind you, “Any day above ground’s a good day.”

Daddy turned 76 yesterday. He’s in good health, runs two weekly newspapers, and can work circles around most thirtysomethings I know. He loathes taking medicine, but has consented to use special order vitamins recommended by the optometrist.

He loads his own papers every week on the back dock of The Star-News, and takes them to the Post Office himself. Please don’t offend him by trying to help. He still cuts his own grass, except for the times Momma gets mad at him for waiting too long and does it herself, and he keeps physically active in other ways, too. Unlike him, Momma, who’s a bit younger than Daddy, says she’s ready to retire, but there’s too much Daddy would never get done if she weren’t at the office. Perhaps I should rephrase that “Daddy runs two newspapers” sentence.

Despite not being a digital native, he has conquered modern electronics. Truly influenced by the World War II era into which he was born, he is tight with a dollar, and uses his iPhone as a hot spot for Internet service at home, powering his iPad so that he can stay connected in the digital world when not at work. It costs less, he says.

And he communicates with his children – or at least this child – regularly by text.

So on Friday morning – having failed to ship him yet another book in time for his birthday – I texted him a message.

“Happy birthday.”

And he replied, “Thanks. Another victory over the grim reaper.”

I hope that if I have as many victories over the grim reaper as he has had, I’ll be smart enough to keep my mind and body active, and keep the steady pace he’s set for us.

Remember. Every day is the best day of your life. So go around spreading some totally positive messages. It’ll help you outrun the grim reaper.