Friday, 28 August 2009

fathers and sons

It’s a strange sort of Friday evening. A long hard week at work and I’m feeling tired, but relaxed. Well, I say relaxed. I’m veering more towards somnolent.

As I was chilling on the couch, wondering what to eat for dinner...wondering if I could be arsed eating anything for dinner – so not like me – I like my grub – I was watching the repeat of last week’s X-Factor.

First off, I’m not joining any pseudo intellectual queue to slag off this programme. I’m an unapologetic fan of all this stuff. Blame Hughie Green. I was brought up on talent shows and I’m also a sucker for the story. No, not the my wife died and this is for her, kinda story. More the, I’m just an ordinary guy/ gal and I have an uncertain amount of talent and a huge dream, kinda story. ‘Cos basically I am everyman and I want everyone to succeed. And I’m there cheering with all the family members when their son/brother/ daughter/sister gets a row of yes’s.

As usual there were those who were deluded, those who were clearly just there for a laugh or a bet and those who frankly shouldn’t be let out in public on their own without a bell to ring and an armed guard. Call me old fashioned but I have to say I prefer it when the programme makers engineer a situation where we have someone we can laugh with, rather than someone to laugh at.

Interestingly, the wee fella doesn’t like programmes like the X-Factor because only one person out of all those thousands can win. The rest of them, he says, go away with their dreams ruined.

He has a point.

Anywho, there was the guy at the end, Danyl Johnson, teacher, 27. He was soooo good I got goosebumps. I’d pay to see him in concert tomorrow. He could sing, dance and engage the audience. As I write this, I believe his audition has become the next big thing on youtube.

Another young fella turned my ear. Can’t remember his name but he was about 19 and he had only sung karaoke and “in front of like a hundred people”. That’s some karaoke, dude. His song of choice was “Dance With My Father”. This was a song that won Luther Vandross a Grammy and one he was quoted as saying it was the high point in his career. It prompted a memory... son and I were in the car in a shopping mall car park. Dance With My Father was playing on the radio. This was about a year ago and at that time he wasn’t really into music, but something about the song made him stop what he was wittering on about (WWE probably)and he listened...

- what’s that song about, Dad?

- It’s about a man remembering his own Dad and how he misses him. His Dad died a long time ago. But when he was a wee boy his dad used to pick him up and dance him around the house. He’s singing that he would love to have just one more dance with him.

Suddenly, we are both gripped by the emotion of the moment. He turns to stare out the window.

- You ok, son? I just manage to ask.

- Don’t say anything, he answers, or you’ll make me cry.

We sit in silence until the last note faded.

- Want to go for a coffee now, he asks.

- Since when did you like coffee, I say surprised.

- Since never... but you like it, Dad.

So there’s me on a Friday night, with a tear in my eye and the whisky bottle not even open.


  1. ahh, mikey, you touch my heart. very poignant.

  2. Michael that story is so sweet it brought a tear to my eye.Laney

  3. Thea, Laney - glad you like. Have a listen to the song now while thinking about my story. You'll be blubbing in no time.

  4. Wow, that's worth blubbering over. An unforgettable shared moment of love - a rare gift.

  5. I had to come back. That little golden snip in time just serves to remind that the very best things in life can't be purchased, can't be held in your hand. And thank you for sharing it.

  6. Marley, you are so right. And I don't want to take these moments for granted. So recording them here helps me appreciate them. I hope one day, the wee fella sees these snippets for what they are.

  7. My comments on your jottings are usually glib, smart-arsed things. Not this time. Pure lump in the throat magic, Big Man.

  8. Bill...aye see, you pretend to be all curmudgeonly, when you're actually nearly quite nice.