( . Y . )
“Hey Captain!” I said into my phone.
“Hey Sailor!” my dad said.
“How are they hanging?” I queried.
“One in front of the other, for speed!” He’s a fighter pilot, that’s the standard reply. “And yourself?”
“I’m high speed, low-drag sir!” We both chuckled. I’m not in the Navy, just going to college, but I know the lingo pretty good.
“You’re going home for Mother’s Day, right?” he asked.
“Oh yeah, dad. I’m going home, uh, Friday afternoon. After class gets out. Please tell me you sent something?”
We both laughed again. Dad once had the impression that since his wife wasn’t his mother, he didn’t need to get her anything for Mother’s day. That is the wrong impression, believe me! He’d been over-doing it every year since, but I still teased him about it.
He had to send something because he was TDY (temporary duty) in Italy. Dad was a Captain, bucking for Admiral, so he was very busy. The house is in Alexandria, Virginia, so he can be near his job at the Pentagon. I’m down the road a bit at the University of Virginia.
I’m not ashamed to say it; Dad’s my hero. He shot down a MiG-27 in the first Gulf War. He was a Blue Angel for 3 years, including serving as Flight Leader. He was the CAG on the Ronald Reagan, he’s cool under fire, great under pressure, and a fucking funny guy and a great dad.