Some people have a gift. They can recognize when someone is feeding them bullshit. In the same way that I learned very young how to swear from my old man, I also learned that he had that gift.  I could not get away with anything. And if I tried to lie my way out of anything the consequences were always worse than if I was straight with him. So after pondering the question for what seemed like 20 minutes but was probably no longer than 5 , I blurted out “I don’t know.” because I really didn’t have any idea what he was getting at. And I sure as hell wasn’t going to try to bullshit him into thinking I did.
But I thought about saying, “Well, there are sure a lot of creatures in there that have ears, and as long as there was even just one, they would hear the noise, if there wasn’t any ears in there the noise would just travel on without hitting anybody and nobody would hear it.” But I didn’t say it. I played it safe and said “I don’t know”.

“Johnny, that is the best goddamn answer I have ever heard for that question! I hope you always admit to that to any question that you don’t know the answer to. People can spot bullshit from a mile away, even if they themselves don’t know what they’re talking about. But now, between me and you, what do you really think about that tree?”

And I told him what I thought.

“You know, that’s what I think, too. The sun is going to get high and hot soon, we’d better be getting home, you’ve got fish to clean.”

When we got back to the car, I looked in the back seat and found my worn high top tennis shoes and old dusty stretched wool socks. I put them on, tied up the laces real tight and I haven’t gone barefoot since.







  1. GP Cox says:

    It’s amazing just how smart we now realize our parents were.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. rushmorejudd says:

    Nice reflection that all of us can relate to one way or another.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. iampeacenow says:

    This is all wonderful…. And perhaps just the beginning? Are we looking for page 2? Peace to you

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I love this conversation between a father and a son! Valuable stuff learned! Especially learning that your father is willing to ask questions, listen, offer advice and a pat on the back with words! 🙂

    People have told me they appreciate when I say “I don’t know. But, I’ll try to find out an answer for you”, when they’ve asked my advice on something. I am honest…if I don’t know I seek out others who might know. Then I can take some solid advice back to the person who asked the question. And I am, also, willing to help them talk through their options. I don’t say EXACTLY what I would do, unless they really want to know EXACTLY what I would do. 🙂 The talking through options is always a good way to go. 🙂

    GREAT writing, OC! Precious memories!

    HUGS!!! And Happy Toots-Day!!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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