The nursery rhyme “Little girls are made of sugar, spice, and everything nice” has never applied to me. As a child, I constantly snubbed compliments, shied away from strangers’ cooing faces, and enjoyed my own company best. My well-rehearsed mother would chuckle, look into the camera, and recite her favorite catchphrase; “She takes after her father”.
While most little girls were turning into princesses, I was slowly morphing into a grumpy, old man. My slouchy, lean figure is a carbon copy of my father’s during his teenage years. His pastel English coloring is displayed proudly across the sharp features he lent me. Our perpetually sour mugs are broken for one thing and one thing only: a good joke. Dad blessed me with the gift of quick wit and an elusive smile. When we’re together, you’ll hear us before you see us. Booming laughter and a hearty slap on the knee follow the delivery of every punchline. Once the joke is successfully ran into the ground, the comfortable silence we enjoy dearly returns.
I spent days writing this piece. Not because I wanted to accurately describe a beautiful relationship, but because I wanted to reveal the bitter truth behind a lovely exterior. My dad and I aren’t close. Due to our equally stubborn and lazy natures, we probably will never grow any closer. We’ll skirt the truth with humor and fall back into the safety of silence, indefinitely.