On Father’s Day, Recalling a Son Growing Up

Maybe it’s because I’ve been a newsman my entire adult life and I’m a chronicler of life events.

It might explain how I had the presence of mind to write down things my oldest son said and did as he was growing up that were cute, memorable or funny.

The first entry dates to when he was 3 ½ years old and continued until he was about 6 years old.

So for Father’s Day, indulge this old man by letting him share with you a sample of memorable “Michaelisms.”

Happy Father’s Day!


December 1996: Michael soaked Daddy while taking a bath. Daddy was not amused and said:

“Michael, I’m not laughing.”

“But I am,” said Michael.


December 1996: Michael came home with a Jewish star he made in school. It was hanging on the Christmas tree when Daddy got home from work.

“Oh,” said Daddy, “you made a Star of David.”

“No Daddy, it’s mine,” said Michael.


January 1997: Michael for breakfast has taken to eating chocolate-covered granola bars. He calls them “gorilla bars.”


January 1997: Michael and Daddy are heading into school. Daddy greets another parent good morning in the lobby. Michael turns to Daddy and says: “You can’t talk to strangers like that.”


Summer 1997: Michael says that heaven is in Disney World.


November 1997: Michael refers to nostrils as “smeller holes.” And told to put away his toys, he announced: “Let’s take a vote!”


January 1998: Michael goes to Daddy’s doctor with Daddy because Daddy is sick. Michael wants to know if grown-ups are good at the doctor’s, do they get stickers?


January 1998:  Michael tells Daddy that he has had the same dream two nights in a row. But forgetful Daddy cannot recall what Michael had told him. (Michael had described the dream in Technicolor detail the day before but Daddy did not retain it.)

Michael says: “Daddy, your brain works slow. My brain works fast.”

He then put his hand to his forehead and then put the same hand to Daddy’s head.

With that gesture, Michael says: “Here, Dad, have some of my fast brains.”


July 1998: Michaels asks who Dino is. Dino? What do you mean? Michael says: “You know – someone’s in the kitchen with Dino…”


October 1998: Michael tells his babysitter that he watched the Fourth of July fireworks (“America’s birthday”) on TV because he couldn’t look out his window to see America because it was too far away.


August 1999: Michael spots the club Daddy keeps under the bed in case of intruders. Michael wants to know what it’s for.

Daddy tells him if there is anyone who comes to the house who doesn’t belong there, Daddy will greet them with this.

Wisely, Michael asks: “Why would you greet them if they don’t belong here?!”


June 2015: Michael turns 22, and, having just graduated from college, is about to begin his professional career at a job eight hours and five states away from home.

Daddy will miss him.

mike grad


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