Some fathers fish, or hunt, or camp or work on cars, or more sadly, don’t do much of anything together at all. But my Dad, he and I always had three things we shared – Baseball, a love for Chicago sports, and my collecting of action figures.
He never treated my love of this genre as an oddity, or something to be ashamed of, even though it might have been considered abnormal or not over ‘manly’. Throughout my life, he was always there to drive me around on toy runs and share in the enjoyment of this simple pleasure of collecting these childhood mementos. He and I would hunt down the latest GIJoe figures at Lionel Playworld, or go look at the latest Masters of the Universe figures at the Toys By Roy at the local mall. And on occasion when I would go with him on cross country business trips, he would stop at every single store near the interstate that carries action figures to look for Super Powers and M.A.S.K. Or when I wasn’t with him, he would call and ask if I had the specific figure he saw at a store. And every business trip back east he would return with some amazing toy that hadn’t even been released in our part of the country, much to the amazement of my friends. The times we shared on our various toy adventures are the best memories of my life.
To this day, my Dad still supports my collecting, and I’ve passed on that acceptance to my own small son. We now share in the same fun of toy hunting that my Dad shared with me. In fact, last weekend when my parents visited, we all had another toy adventure with three generations searching for Transformers in Wal-mart. So to my Father, who has supported this crazy hobby of mine for a quarter of a century, no matter how silly it was to my family or anyone else – Happy Fathers Day.