- Thank you for picking me up at 3 in the morning when I got scared on the bridge near the middle school and called you on my cell phone.
- Also, thank you for taking my friends home and for not yelling at me or even seeming mad.
- Thank you for canceling that meeting when we were sledding and the inner tube popped and we had to get a replacement. You called from a pay phone in Target and told them that you had to play in the snow.
- Thank you for taking me to soccer camp even though I did cartwheels and picked dandelions instead of ‘bringing the pain’ on defense.
- Thank you for watching me play soccer for over a decade before ever mentioning that it’s your least favorite sport – except maybe hockey, right?
- Oh, and thank you for teaching me how to kick, and for getting excited about dribbling drills, and for learning soccer theory so you could analyze games with me after the fact, for hours on end.
- Thank you for knowing and sharing with me the glories of board games, card games, and made-up games.
- Especially thank you for playing pretend with me, for crawling around on your hands and knees and for being a mermaid or a little brother or a tree frog upon request (or command).
- And ping-pong. Thank you for ping-pong. For the long conversations played while bouncing the ball back and forth. Thank you for playing with me even when I beat you – I’m pretty sure it only happened, like, once.
- Thank you for just saying no (not like in DARE). I read this blog the other day that reminded me of you – I recommend just glancing over the comics (the text is too much). But I mean that you didn’t tell me to stop asking questions, you just said no when that was the answer, and you always answered.
- Thank you for telling me you were sorry when I got my period and I was so angry about being a woman. I’m not anymore. But it helped that you understood.
- Thank you for running with me and for timing me and discussing times with me.
- And thank you so much for being competitive and letting me be competitive.
- Thank you for reading all of the Redwall series with me, and Narnia. Thank you for the funny dragon voice you did when the boy put the ring on his finger. I laughed so long that we couldn’t read any more that night. Thank you for liking My Friend Flicka so much. I still don’t really remember it.
- Thank you for reading Roald Dahl with me, especially the Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar and Six More and especially Danny, the Champion of the World.
- Thank you for being a feminist.
- Thank you for taking me to that art class where we drew the trees in the snow and for proving to me over and over again that people liked mine as well as yours, even though it seemed so messy to me.
- Thank you for listening to all my crazy music and letting me tell you the lyrics.
- Thank you for always saying that my piano-playing sounds good.
- Thank you for getting excited about writing editorials as a competition over Christmas break, and for being the sort of person who writes editorials and cares about the world.
- Thank you for being clumsy.
- Gosh, and thank you for playing football in college. I wish you didn’t have any leftover injuries, but I love telling people that you were a monster with no neck (according to Mom).
- And along those lines, thank you for having even bigger quads in high school than I did. I guess it makes sense, but I tell people that you couldn’t wear jeans because they wouldn’t fit and then I can smile because my quads used to be so big, too.
- Thank you for making pancakes all the time, and other yummy breakfasts, and for burning grilled cheese sandwiches so that when I’m away from home for too long I can just order a grilled cheese and ask them to burn it so that I don’t feel so sad. It’s never exactly the same, but it helps.
- Thank you for letting me come to workshops with you, in Oregon and New York, and for being humble. People love you so much, and I’m glad they understand what I do.
- Thank you for visiting me everywhere in the world and for planning April Fool’s pranks with mom.
- Especially, thank you for dressing up as a woman once (as a prank – I recognize other people read my blog and maybe I should be clear about that). It was incredible.
- Also, thank you for thinking fake poop is funny.
- And thank you for being Uncle Leroy!
- Thank you for being cool enough that when you came to do guest lectures in my fifth grade class, I was proud instead of embarrassed.
- Thank you for being my dad.
- Thank you for loving pastries and bananas. I love them, too.
- Thank you for the memory I have of riding my bike to Paxson in 1st, 2nd, and 3rdgrade. I can see you ahead of me on WaterWorks hill, speeding down with a backpack and helmet on. You were so proud when I would keep up.
- Also, thank you for letting me throw up on you that one time.
- Thank you for letting me be the same as you, and different from you.
I love you, Dad. Happy birthday.
– The Other Lime (Mom was really the first one)