by irms

Santana Olguin Sr.

Santana Olguin Sr. - June 28th 1956 - January 13th, 2003 (46 years, 6 months, and 16 short days)

I regularly  blame my mom and my dad for how I turned out.  I don’t care what people say, this apple fell straight down.  I know this because I remember about a thousand things my dad used to say that made too much sense for me to care about at the time, and now, they’re the same things I tell other people and they think I’m so wise.

When I was young I wondered why my dad seemed to beat a dead horse about repeating these things to his kids (not just his kids, everyone who pretended to listen).  I don’t wonder about that anymore, because the repetition makes perfect sense:  It’s how we learn.

(In fact, they say that the surest way to remember everything you’ve ever learned, is to think about it at the moment you’re about to forget.  Forgetting wasn’t an option with my dad, but the point still makes sense.)

Lessons Learned

  • Just because I don’t like it, doesn’t make it wrong.
  • There’s something to learn from everything, including you.
  • If you haven’t done anything wrong, then you have nothing to worry about.
  • Nothing really hurts, it’s just “not comfortable” and things aren’t good, they’re “not half bad”.
  • It’s not ok to wear a hat in a building, especially if there is a flag present.
  • Not getting “back on the horse” will teach you to be afraid of the horse, and that is not allowed.
  • There will always be someone out there working to be better than you are, and that means you can be replaced.

And Things I Remember

  • He knew the location of every McDonalds in all cities.  It’s how he gave directions, “Turn right at the McDonalds,” he’d say.
  • He’d leave the TV on the channel that played the same Indian music video on a loop for hours just because it bothered us.
  • He encouraged his children to wrestle, much to the dismay of their mother.
  • Our visiting friends were treated just like his kids and were held to the same standards.
  • He watched Star Trek — a lot.
  • When someone would ask how he was doing he’d say, “Better than I deserve.”
  • He wore a Santa hat every year from the day after Thanksgiving to Christmas Day no matter where he went.
  • He loved my mom and his kids beyond reason.

I feel time stood still when my dad died.  Sometimes it still does.  These are my memories, please add yours in the comments.