Growing up, The Old Man would always impart dumb and sometimes grammatically incorrect life advice to me, such as, "Don't never say can't," and "Stop wishing your life away." I, being the pain in the ass that I am, would say things like, "I can't give birth," or "I wish I wasn't working in this disgusting HUD house with you."

The Old Man has also carried with him through the years, the slang and vernacular of the 30s, 40s, and 50s. You should hear him. He's a barely walking encyclopedia of an era long gone past.

Sayings like, "Boy, aren't you a tall drink of water." I can only assume this means something like, wow, it's refreshing that you're pretty and not a short ugly troll. Or The Old Man using, "Broad" when referring to a woman. Mostly, preceded by "Dumb."

The Old Man is also a master at hitting on waitresses in restaurants. It seems that in the past, women were more susceptible to getting ogled by men. Now, you're just as likely to get maced. For example, this is a standard occurrence:

Waitress: "Hi, my name is Kim. I'll be taking care of you today, how are you doing?"

The Old Man: "Better now!" Our eyes commence to rolling.

Now, The Old Man has a long history of forgetting people's names. He would come up with inventive names to cover for it. The most famous of these names is, Joe Matarotz. No one knows for sure if Joe is an actual person or not. Maybe The Old Man knew him in say, Korea. But here's the usual scenario:

Nameless guy in a store/restaurant/bar: "Hey, Al, how are you holding up?"

The Old Man: Hey, Joe Matarotz, how ya doin'?"

Unfortunately, Sammy thinks this is hilarious and uses the name of Joe Matarotz in every occurrence he can.

The Old Man has spent years speaking broken German to us. As I recall, dad's grandfather spoke German to him. The Old Woman would attest to The Old Man's German heritage. Mom would always say, "He's a friggen' Nazi!" And she always called him a "Nazi bitch" for some reason. Anyway, I have tried to pass on the German phrases I've picked up along the way to Sammy. I would write some of them here, but Craig won't be able to pronounce them. Obviously, my love for all things WWII comes from The Old Man. As far back as I can remember, he would sit there at night with his saltine crackers and sharp cheese watching The World at War. Nothing will make me prouder than someday, Sammy watching Nazis on TV with his son.

So, there you have it. The Old Man is definitely one of a kind. I'm sorry I can't be there, and I wish The Old Man a Happy Birthday.


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