I’ve cancelled my plans to run for President.

     Dear Sandy,

     I’ve cancelled my plans to run for President.

     I am tired of trying to be important.

     And I have better things to do.

                                                  Sincerely Papa

Those three lines are as telling as a DNA test - I am undeniably my father’s girl. Just like my Dad, I strive. My ambitions are not as grand, but I do try to accomplish meaningful work. For instance, writing this blog to support my book, and submitting my novel, WHAT YOU CARRY to literary agents and publishers, because getting this book into the hands of readers may have value to people who grew up in the 70’s or have a mentally ill family member or are interested in the Florida wilds along the Space Coast near Cape Canaveral. Vying for a home for my book is kind of like asking for votes. It requires a pitch and a platform, and it can wear a girl out.

For as long as I can remember, my Dad had industrious plans, often thwarted by an array of obstacles that would plow most of us under and eventually did our family in.  Yet, even with a debilitating mental illness, he managed to co-create four humans, hand-craft a working fishing boat, remodel our weird old house, and by himself, in a pair of waders and armed with a jackhammer, build a dock in front of our Cocoa house that spanned 30 feet over the Indian River. 

My “Papa” is exceptional, and incredibly important to me. Letters like this one gave me good reason to bestow the central character in my novel, Lyle Thompson, qualities of my father. And, it’s interesting just how sane this letter seems today, a mere five weeks away from a really important presidential election.   

He only attempted running for President twice, as far as I know. Currently, he is writing a book about his life and philosophy entitled, NO BEGINNING, NO END. Maybe we can team up on book tours.