Cancer took Dad in August 2001.
I don’t want to do the arithmetic on how long ago that was.
Yet I did.
Where is that point of the trailing off of grief and the acceptance of the norm where your parent is gone? It’s not defined at all
I think of him when the calendar reminds me of his birthday or anniversary. I think of him when I am uttering in the yard. I think if him scowling a bit that I do not wash my vehicle on Saturdays like he religiously did. I think of him sometimes when I walk in my shed; are my tools as neatly organized as his basement? That sounds like a lot, actually long stretches of days, weeks go by and he’s at the back of the cortex.
Then there is this photo.
That’s Dad’s Realistic Patrolman 6 radio. I do not exactly remember when he bought it, but I do remember sitting with him as he tried to zero in on the police calls on the VHF lo bands. Maybe we would catch someone far away on the shortwave. Or just static. I think he rationalized having it for “emergencies”. If anything, Dad was prepared.
I think the radio got more use playing FM on the beach on our annual vacations in Ocean City Maryland. That photo at the top of this post is Dad on the beach there in 1981.
Then I do more math. In about 15 months I will be the same age he was then.
That is something that bends my universe.
But back to that radio photo. That was taken in 2011, maybe a week after my Mom had passed away — 10 years to the day Dad went. My sisters and I were at her home seeing what we had to organize. There were so many memory objects. Funny (the wall calendar) and sad (the cookies hidden under a puzzle box).
The “radio” was tucked away in the closet Mom used to take shelter in hurricanes. I took the photo just to have the image of a thing that tied me to a time when they were both here.
For some reason that photo of of Dad’s old radio on flickr has been viewed almost 43,000 times.
That’s crazy. I have no idea why. It’s kind of retro.
And thus I get the Dad reminders when someone favorites it in flickr, or as recently, someone commented they were using it in article.
Dad might not understand exactly flickr was, but he would get a big kick that 43,000 people from different corners of the world looked at his radio. He would get a bigger kick that I am writing about it.
I tried looking up some info on the radio model, and did find an entry in a radio museum site. But almost every other link or image I found was on ebay and other sites that sell old radios.
Where are the Patrolman 6 radio stories?
Well now there is one.
And with great irony, as I am writing about an old radio, my music shuffle brings up a favorite song Getting in Tune by the Who:
I’m singing this note ’cause it fits in well
With the chords I’m playing
I can’t pretend there’s any meaning here
Or in the things I’m saying
But I’m in tune
Right in tune
I’m in tune
And I’m gonna tune
Right in on you
Right in on you
Right in on you
That could be coming from that old radio. From long ago.
The post "Dad’s Radio" was originally assembled from spare parts of a 1957 Chevy at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2017/01/dads-radio/) on January 31, 2017.