"Happy Bar Mitzvah, Bernie!"

We once grew – what seemed like – endless rows of field vegetables, and June was always "weeding month". The long, early-summer days were often coupled with frequent showers, which is the magic formula for getting weeds to grow at an astronomical rate. And of course, Father’s Day always arrived when we were in the midst of our fatiguing war on weeds. 

As a result, Father’s Day was rarely relaxing for anyone in our family, particularly Dad. 

Possibly it was the delirium induced by fighting thistle and quackgrass day in and day out. As my brother and I got older, Father’s Day somehow morphed into a "Monty Pythonesque" event. 

When I was in my late teens, I remember picking-up a "special" card for Dad on Father’s Day and handing it to him during dinner. When he opened it up, and read the card, he initially had a bit of quizzical look on his face. The front of the card said "Happy Bar Mitzvah Bernie!" with "Happy Bar Mitzvah Bernie!" crossed out, and "Happy Father’s Day" written below. A black and white "20% off" sticker was highly visible in the lower corner.

Yes, juvenile, weird, and stupid could best used to describe the card, but Dad couldn’t stop laughing. Of course, Mom just shook her head…which just made the three of us laugh louder. 

We also handed Dad a brand new file to help him keep his hoe sharp. 

No doubt the card and file were silly things to give your father on his special day, but Dad, Bill, and I shared the same sense of humour – or lack thereof.

It’s memories like these that truly keep Dad alive in my head and my heart!

~Jim Hole