My dad would have been 77 today. HIS dad (Grandpa) also shared this birthday with his son. How cool is that? I was always amazed when my Grandma retold the story. “No, we didn’t plan for your father to be born on Grandpa’s birthday. That was his surprise present.” (Really, Grandma?) Yes, really.

I’m sure Dad would have gone to a basketball game or something for his celebration. Maybe Komets hockey? If the grandkids were there, he would have invited them to go, and then on the way home, he would have taken the “scenic route” (Mom called it) downtown to see the huge Santa lights on the side of the bank building and he would have driven through the neighborhoods to check out the decorated houses. (Do they still have those lights? I wonder. I haven’t driven home yet this year. I’ll check it out next week.)

My dad would have had steak for dinner and chocolate cake for dessert today. (Nobody was brave enough to actually cook.) That’s ok. We still remember the tastes of the savory steak sauce and creamy chocolate fudge frosting on the mouthwatering moist cake.

At last, present time! The kids always made cookies or gave him a king-size Hershey Bar. He would put his goodies down beside his chair for later. No sharing. Never needing anything, we would still get him a car wash gift certificate or maybe a new faucet for the bathroom sink. (“When you get to my age, you don’t need anything.”) We’d laugh and sing in our awful “Simon-would-cringe-American Idol” voices.

Then everyone would get ready and tuck into bed. He’d stay up in his Lazy Boy and watch an old movie. (“Miracle on 34th Street” was on tonight.) Then he’d sneak a cookie or two, when no one was watching.

Happy Birthday, Dad!