Monday, February 28, 2011

Monday's Meatloaf - Poncho's Par for the Course

One of the last things my father in law said to me was something I'll carry with me forever. Cancer had ravaged his body and it happened to be the last time we ever played golf together. He was only able to manage 9 holes towards the end and even that was nearly too much for his energy and pain threshold. But he was always ready to play.

Walking off of number 9 one day in July of 2006 I had just missed a makeable birdie putt, then tapped in for par. I was disappointed and I guess it showed. "Every day of playing golf is a good day," he said with a raspy voice that made his voice barely audible. Then he corrected himself, "Every day is a great one."

Normally I would've had to have him write out this thought on his board he carried around to aid with his communication. But this time I knew exactly what he had said. It was one of many lessons I've learned on a golf course. And this one I took quickly to heart. A few months later my daughters' Grandpa and my wife's father was gone. 

Poncho (most who knew him called him by his nickname) also left behind my wife's step mother Brenda. And this past Saturday she remarried, to a man who also had suffered a terrible tragedy to cancer at about the same time. They met while serving at their golf course's annual Highlands-Massey Classic, an event that has helped raise over $1,000,000 towards research to combat today's awful cancer statistics.

As I watched these two families join together in celebrating a joyous ending to what had seemed an insurmountable tragedy, I once again recalled my father in law's words. Saturday wasn't a good day, it was a great one. Two daughters, four grandchildren and two spouses, once devastated by a terrible disease, now celebrating a new beginning.

Congrats, Brenda and Frank!

Today's Ingredients
  • If you find yourself with some extra coin, especially if you're in the Richmond area, check out the VCU Massey Cancer Center and give generously. They are true life changers and are making a difference each and every day.
  • Good news over the weekend on Washaun Ealey rejoining the team in full. I numbered myself among the many who didn't see this happening. So now I'm honestly and pleasantly surprised.
  • the Senator is also pleasantly surprised so far with this off season's headlines.
  • Streit sees Ealey's reinstatement as a big deal and runs down the reasons why.
  • Everyone, meet Coach Olivadotti. "You play if you run to the ball and hit something." Sounds fair enough to me.
  • ecdawg has an interesting read surrounding some comments AJ Green has made about conditioning while at the combine.
  • hoopdawg outlines the success that was Saturday's chicken roasting.
  • And Daugman is pretty excited about Kentavious Caldwell's future in Athens.
  • With Selection Sunday just a mere 14 days away, Kyle updates the tourney hardwood.
  • Once again there's a special promo for hoops fans wanting to go this Wednesday night to see the Dawgs take on LSU in the last home game of the season. "HOOPS" gets you an $8 ticket.
  • The softball team continues to dominate, this time a pretty damn good opponent too. Meanwhile, Perno's squad continues to struggle with consistency in the early part of the season.
  • Landers' Lady Dawgs will be the 4 seed in the SEC Tournament after losing the regular season finale yesterday.
  • The Lady Sportswriter thinks ESPNs latest move towards greater accountability is too little too late.
There are many things I was put on this Earth to do. It just so happens that dancing is not even remotely close to being one of them. Yet, I enjoy spending time on the dance floor with the wife, and especially with my little girls. So there was a point in the reception Saturday when I sought the little beauties out.

They were dressed perfectly of course, and were flying high after getting to walk down the aisle carrying roses on their new (and much older) cousins' arms. They've served on larger wedding parties before of course. But now they resembled young ladies more, not just the little angels you hope don't steal the show by dumping the flower petals on the preacher's feet, or lifting their dress too far to scratch their butts while at the altar.

No they gracefully made it through Saturday's ceremony...and then gracefully turned down my repeated offers for a dance. Running around the reception area with the cousins was too much for both of my left feet to compete with I guess. 

That's okay, there'll be another great day sometime soon I'm sure. And they probably won't have to stand on my feet anymore when it gets here. Here's your fork Reader. Have a great Monday!



the wife said...

Wiping the tears away as I read this. Thank you for that wonderful reminder. And to those readers who find themselves or a loved one battling cancer, PLEASE support your local charity, hospital or ACS. Every little bit WILL make a difference. We proudly support VCU's Massey Cancer center every year in hopes that a cure will be found.

JenniferfromLaJolla said...

My father was also treated at the Massey Cancer Center. Cancer claimed his life four weeks after the diagnosis. He was 53. The Massey Center staff was wonderful.

Thank you for spreading the word Bernie. And congratulations to Brenda and Frank!