It's Our Turn: Like father, hopefully like son
For those who don't know me, I'm the new guy. And to best tell you about myself, I'd better talk about my dad.
That's because we're quite nearly the same person. I've adopted just about all of his quirks and mannerisms, all his rooting interests in sports and certainly his quick-witted sense of humor.
My dad was born and raised in Seattle, making him a lifelong fan of the Mariners and Seahawks (someday, the SuperSonics again, too). And as soon as I discovered a passion for sports, his favorites became my favorites.
He never pushed his allegiances on me, which opened the door for me to become a young Twins or Vikings fan if I wanted. But even though I was born in Jamestown, N.D., and then moved to East Grand Forks at the age of 9, I was never interested in the hometown teams of the familiar Midwest. My loyalties were set on Seattle because that's what I learned from my dad.
When I journeyed through the high school years, though, I lived in a good-spirited fear of how much like my dad I was becoming. We'd react with the same punchlines, we'd watch the same shows and movies, and more often than not we'd come down the stairs for church on Sunday morning with accidentally matching shirts. He was the one who usually went back to go change.
But as I grew older and wiser (like him), I started to appreciate who I was becoming. I learned kindness and patience and integrity through his example, and I learned that turning out like him was much more a blessing than I'd ever thought it was a curse.
And don't you forget: My mom is an all-star, too.
But with Father's Day circled on this weekend's calendar, I thought it was fitting to bring up my dad. In my life, he's been a coach, a mechanic, a mentor and a friend — among many others.
He's sacrificed a lot just to get me to the moment of writing this column as the new sports reporter for the Echo Press. I can't count the number of weekends he gave up during my three years at Bemidji State University, nor the ones already spent helping me transition to Alexandria.
And he'll never keep track, either.
For years, friends and family have joked and laughed about how similar we are continuously becoming. Each episode of identical mannerisms or matching habits further solidifies their belief that I'm turning into my father.
I hope they're right.
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"It's Our Turn" is a weekly column that rotates among members of the Echo Press editorial staff.