April 10, 2020– Happy 99th Birthday, Giz.
It is hard to forget his birthday. It was drilled into us that “Dad wouldn’t be home to celebrate tonight. We’ll do that after the 15th.”
Father was a Certified Public Accountant. April was his busiest month. Taxes were due on the 15th and, back then, there were no computers- just handwritten preparation sheets, typewritten forms. All of it copied with carbon paper. (Anyone remember carbon paper??)
The entire staff worked overtime every night. The secretaries, the typist, Father and whoever else he had hired to help all stayed until the wee hours of the morning.
Their reward was a trip to Yosemite starting on April 16th!
Father was involved in Kiwanis, city government, and the Presbyterian Church, especially the church choir.
A while back I wrote about his singing. It was his passion.
It is one of the few pictures that I have of him. Second Row, second from the left, yellow and brown vest. Singing barber shop tunes.
The Spouse just walked in and said, “Remember Tavern by the Green?”
I had forgotten. Spouse and I were celebrating our anniversary and my birthday. We hadn’t been married very long at the time. But Father and my step-mother had come up from San Diego to celebrate with us. We told them we were going to Tavern by the Green for dinner.
Tavern by the Green was a ‘fancy’ restaurant at a local Country Club. We sat down to dinner and while enjoying the view of the golf course, we ordered our dinner. Things went pleasantly along when it was time for dessert.
Knowing my father, I expected there to be a ‘surprise’ cake and he would lead the singing of the Happy Birthday song. He would, of course, encourage the entire clientele of the restaurant to join in. It had happened before.
What normally would be embarrassing was, most times, a source of pride to me when his golden voice spread through the air.
But this time was very, very different.
The cake comes in (expected) Father rises (expected) as do six or seven men from different tables. All members of the Mineral King Chorus–barber-shoppers that Father had sung with previously.
A rousing, four-part harmony filled that room.
I was surprised, alright. The spouse was stunned.
For whatever reason, I had forgotten that memory.
The Spouse did not!
Thanks, Dad. Especially for the MUSIC.