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    Run For Your Life, Black Hockey Jesus!
    « Dear Pedophile, | Main | The Jasper Strikes Back »

    Sweet Face

    LUCY: Daddy?
    ME: Yeah.
    LUCY: How come you never don't call me Sweet Face anymore?

    Something clicks. I tilt my head.

    ME: But Pink Fishhead. You said at the pool your official new name was Pink Fishhead. Isn’t that what you said, Pink Fishhead?

    She smiles. Nods. Wants me to save her from her own contradiction.

    ME: Wait a second. Something smells fishy in Denmark, little Pink Fishhead. Are you trying to tell me that you actually LIKE IT when I call you Sweet Face?

    She nods.

    ME: I see I see, Pink Fishhead. Well tell me this then. How would you like it if every now and again, here and there, you know, just every so often, only at super special times, I still call you Sweet Face?

    Her face explodes into a carnival of stars and butterflies. It has never dawned on me quite like this how much my daughter starves for my love. And she starves for it in particular ways.

    O Sweet Face.

    If you only knew how carefully I hug you for fear that I might accidentally grind your little bird bones into a fine fine dust from the strength of my love alone. How could I ever make you understand? I would join forces with the moon and overthrow the sun for you. I would carry a big rock on my back across the orange desert for you. I would pluck a quill from an angry porcupine just so you could clean between those tiny little pearls you call teeth. I would suck rattlesnake venom out of your big toe. I’d spit it out and go PAH! I would learn trigonometry for you. I would wrestle crocodiles. Then I’d do a funny dance if it would make you smile. I would hire an airplane to write in big white smoke letters across the blue blue sky: “Daddy loves you Sweet Face”. I would build you your very own castle out of unique handpicked stones and mortar made of sugar. It would be on a big green hill on a remote island in the Pacific where there were no such things as sickness and old age. There would be parades every single day with showy displays of extravagant fashions. Lucy. I will hold your hand through the world’s biggest parking lots. I would leap in front of cars for you. I would shoot up Old West bars for you. I would stay up all night and count the sky’s stars for you. And give you the brightest one.

    But this above all.

    I will be our family’s pioneer and go out ahead to conquer Death for you—if only to explore, sniff around a bit, and check everything out to make sure it’s cool. But don’t worry. I will come rushing back to life and whisper all of Death’s secrets in your trembling ear. Just use your imagination because that’s where your Daddy lives. Remember to be still and listen with your whole heart. When you are a very old woman and you are in your last bed, you won’t need to be afraid. Just close your eyes. I will be there. I promise. I’ll open my arms so wide. Just listen very closely with everything you can muster and you’ll be able to hear me say through those veils of misty silver…

    “It’s alright, Sweet Face. Daddy’s here.”

    Reader Comments (91)

    That is the cutest thing I have ever had the privilege to read in my entire life. As a complete daddy's girl, I could cry.

    July 14, 2008 at 5:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterTwenty-Something

    That post made me cry, dammit!


    July 14, 2008 at 5:54 AM | Unregistered CommenterMereCat

    I'm reading this with my daughter on my lap and she is wondering why I'm crying. Just beautiful.

    July 14, 2008 at 5:58 AM | Unregistered Commenterreneedesigns

    no shit- wtf BHJ? making a guy's eyes water before 9 in the am... and on a monday even... nice!

    July 14, 2008 at 6:00 AM | Unregistered Commentergreezus chrust

    You know you try to convince us you're a cynical old soul licking bibles left and right and then, by accident, your heart gets out and shows the real you. It's amazing how quickly a grown man can melt when his daughter walks in:) Great post.

    July 14, 2008 at 6:04 AM | Unregistered CommenterMary Beth

    You managed to express something really indescribable; put your finger right on it didn't you?

    You should frame these words and give them to her to hang in her college dorm...and then to read to her future husband just so that he knows exactly the level of Herculean devotion that will be expected of him.

    July 14, 2008 at 6:04 AM | Unregistered Commenterthat girl

    Very sweet. And a nice start to my day.

    You'd learn Trig for her ... that's love.

    July 14, 2008 at 6:13 AM | Unregistered Commenterdelmer

    Beautiful! She's lucky to have such a great dad!

    July 14, 2008 at 6:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterJennifer

    At 40, this is how my Dad lives his life for me and my sister (except I was "Squirt," and his efforts to teach me trig just made me cry). It's been one of the greatest gifts I've ever received.

    This is beautiful, and so is your daughter.

    July 14, 2008 at 6:46 AM | Unregistered Commenterfor a different kind of girl

    Very sweet. So is your daughter.

    July 14, 2008 at 6:47 AM | Unregistered CommenterJenni

    Okay, I'm not supposed to cry when I come here...but I was crying at the second fucking paragraph! Urgh.

    Seriously, that was really beautiful--I hope your daughter gets to read that some day.

    July 14, 2008 at 6:50 AM | Unregistered CommenterChristy

    what the HELL dude? Why did you have to make me cry on a Monday morning? Blog foul.

    July 14, 2008 at 6:51 AM | Unregistered CommenterMrsFortune

    I feel there same way. There'd nothing I wouldn't do for Maddie. I tell her that every day.

    July 14, 2008 at 6:52 AM | Unregistered Commenterheather

    You really made me miss my Dad today.

    July 14, 2008 at 6:56 AM | Unregistered CommenterTuesday Girl

    I'm so confused. I thought I knew you, BHJ. I must now go reevaluate everything... He has a soul??? So confused...

    July 14, 2008 at 6:57 AM | Unregistered CommenterCarolyn...Online

    Oh frick and frack. Now I'm all weepy. That was lovely.

    July 14, 2008 at 7:01 AM | Unregistered CommenterJen

    The last thing I expected when I opened your blog page was to be a weeping mess by the time I finished your latest post.

    You most certainly have a way with words. I hope your daughter reads this someday.

    July 14, 2008 at 7:02 AM | Unregistered CommenterFairly Odd Mother

    Ok, between you and Mamaspohr I'm a weepy mess today. Beautiful post.

    July 14, 2008 at 7:07 AM | Unregistered CommenterAnna Marie

    OMG...your are a very sweet man. There is no other love than a parents' for their child.....I love you. There is no way I could let this one go..........

    July 14, 2008 at 7:20 AM | Unregistered CommenterMom

    Now you're writing again. That was beautiful. Having grown up without a daddy, I know the priceless gift a father can give a daughter just by always loving her. Just by being there and letting her know that somewhere in the world there is a man who will always love her, who is always ready to carry the big rock, to face death or whatever else it takes.
    Fathers are incredibly important.

    July 14, 2008 at 7:21 AM | Unregistered CommenterMs. Moon

    Lovely. *sniff* Must give GirlChild a few bearhugs today and forever.

    July 14, 2008 at 7:32 AM | Unregistered CommenterAlice

    That was really beautiful. I wish all daughters could know the kind of love you obviously feel for Lucy. Well done.

    July 14, 2008 at 7:42 AM | Unregistered CommenterCaraBee

    Oh for fuck's made me cry and I DON'T EVEN HAVE HUMAN EMOTIONS! Ask my husband! You may have just pulled ahead of Chag; he better bring his A-game next post!

    July 14, 2008 at 7:43 AM | Unregistered CommenterEliza

    God you make it almost impossibly hard for me not to like you and want to call you names with redeeming posts like this.

    Dammit, knock it off. I really need to go back to being seriously annoyed by you.

    July 14, 2008 at 8:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterAuds at Barking Mad

    I go "PAH" when I suck my coffee from the cup.

    July 14, 2008 at 8:15 AM | Unregistered CommenterTootsie Farklepants

    Wow. Very very beautiful. You have really captured those emotions of a good Dad. And just like at the end of E.T. I cried.

    July 14, 2008 at 8:37 AM | Unregistered CommenterPunk Rock Mom

    This Daddy's girl is moved to tears.

    July 14, 2008 at 8:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterElusive Butterfly



    July 14, 2008 at 8:49 AM | Unregistered CommenterYou can call me, 'Sir'

    I think I can speak for every girl with daddy issues and just say "LUCKY, LUCKY LUCY". I am so glad there are dads like you out there.

    Because you're right - she does starve for your love. I'm so glad you give it to her freely.

    July 14, 2008 at 9:05 AM | Unregistered CommenterElise

    You make me want to go out and smack my dad for never saying anything like that to me.

    Beautiful post. Like beyond Hallmark greeting card stuff.

    July 14, 2008 at 9:18 AM | Unregistered CommenterNanny Goats In Panties

    Enough with trying to make people cry already! I've ben to a handful of blogs this week tat have sent people burstig into tear. Not that I mind a sweet story, but it just makes me feel like I'm an insensative jack ass...for not cryng that is. Though, that is NOT it... am was just born with super-strength really is not my fault.

    July 14, 2008 at 9:23 AM | Unregistered CommenterTentCamper

    That's right.

    July 14, 2008 at 9:38 AM | Unregistered CommenterBackpacking Dad

    Oh, Black Hankie Jesus.
    That made me cry.

    July 14, 2008 at 9:40 AM | Unregistered CommenterPamela

    I guess you don't need the 32nd person or so to tell you, but that was truly lovely.

    Annoyingly so. How can I come here and rant in my head about how obnoxious you can be if you're going to bare your soul like that?

    July 14, 2008 at 9:40 AM | Unregistered Commenteranymommy

    Dammit, Black. I decided I WASN'T going to cry any more today, and then THERE YOU GO.

    Totally worth it though!

    July 14, 2008 at 9:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterAndrea's Sweet Life

    More of these types of posts, please.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:39 AM | Unregistered CommenterManager Mom

    I wish my Dad would write something like that to me. I think it's a rare and beautiful thing when a Daddy acknowledges and answers a daughter's soul-deep need for reassurance and love.

    July 14, 2008 at 10:45 AM | Unregistered CommenterMommy Melee

    rememeber that one time you made funn of that one lady for posting pictures of animals and kiddos on her blog...
    wtf is this?

    July 14, 2008 at 11:25 AM | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

    That was lovely. Still BHJ in character and extremely touching.

    July 14, 2008 at 11:27 AM | Unregistered Commenterscargosun

    Posts like this will only increase the amount of people who stalk you and increase your personal security costs.

    July 14, 2008 at 11:46 AM | Unregistered CommenterMelizzard

    once again, you have not ceased to amaze me with your poetry.

    I am going to go kiss my boopie lips (aka pain in the ass)and my Raymbo (aka jeez ray) right now!

    No-seriously, this was a righteous post man!

    I love when you show your vulnerable side.

    July 14, 2008 at 11:51 AM | Unregistered CommenterSwirl Girl

    Oh, ow. My aching chest and my burning throat and my stinging eyes and nose. Ow.

    July 14, 2008 at 12:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterFern

    Yep... you are wrapped tight! Feels good doesn't it?

    Sweet Face is a lucky, lucky sweet face!

    July 14, 2008 at 12:18 PM | Unregistered CommenterFiesty Charlie

    You suck. That made me cry, dammit. Not fair.

    July 14, 2008 at 12:23 PM | Unregistered CommenterMama Dawg

    Damn you, Black Hockey Jesus, you son of a bitch.

    You are the best ballet dancing wordsmith that ever lived, and if I get a chance, I'll strangle you with my bare hands!

    July 14, 2008 at 12:43 PM | Unregistered CommenterJozet at Halushki

    oh, she owns you, that sweet girl.

    July 14, 2008 at 1:14 PM | Unregistered CommenterKristen

    single tear down my cheek...

    July 14, 2008 at 3:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterKate

    I hope you save this post for her! This is the kind of thing that would make an incredible gift when she's older.
    The kind of thing that even as an adult she will pull out periodically to read and know how fully and completely her dad loves her.

    July 14, 2008 at 3:35 PM | Unregistered CommenterWorker Mommy

    Wow, you had me at "I would learn trigonometry for you."

    July 14, 2008 at 3:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterLotta

    OK dude, you let your wife read this? You are so going to get Monday night lovin. Just sayin.

    July 14, 2008 at 3:59 PM | Unregistered CommenterJessie

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