What’s Something You’ve Learned from Your Dad?

Mom and Dad in Sicily

Father’s Day is coming up in a few days, so I thought I’d mention an attribute about my father that came to mind recently when I was giving myself a haircut.

When I was growing up, Dad cut my hair every few months through middle school and high school. I’d sit on a stool in the garage as he’d use an electric razor (and scissors, when necessary) to give me a haircut. He had a steady hand and a perfectionist’s eye.

After each haircut, I would vacuum hair off the concrete and myself as Dad cleaned the razor. This is what made me think of him recently after I finished giving myself a trim. Dad wanted that razor to last for decades, so every time he used it, he would do his best to meticulously return it to its original condition.

He treats everything like this: Nothing is disposable to Dad, even in an age where most things aren’t made to last very long.

Growing up, I’d go through soccer cleats every 2 years. But every time after Dad plays soccer–which he does almost every weekend–he sits down for 15 minutes and brushes, wipes, washes, and oils his cleats. He told me almost guiltily on the phone the other day that he only got 8 years out of his last pair.

I’m not my father. If something breaks, I rarely try to fix it–I’ll just buy a new one. I rarely spend the time and care to keep anything in peek condition–I don’t have my father’s patience.

But I think I would have been a lot more careless were it not for my dad’s example. That came to mind as I looked at my electric razor the other day. It was clogged with hair, and all I had was a teensy brush. But I took the time to clean the razor. It’s not good as new, but it’s close.

Happy Father’s Day, Dad! Thank you