My progressive - and handsome - father.

My progressive – and handsome – father.

By Jacqueline Bennett newsandviewsjb

Though old-fashioned when it came to boys dating his daughters and granddaughters, I’ve long realized in all other ways my father was progressive.

There was never any question, I was college bound. In fact, one of my earliest memories is of a big, red piggy bank college fund. My father often said, “Education is the one thing no one can ever take away from you.”

I remember too at around age five, on one of our annual summer sojourns from Connecticut to visit my grandmother ( my dad’s mother) in New Hampshire asking him  –   “Daddy – does Gram like having white hair ?” He laughed at length then said to me -“When we get to the farm – why don’t you ask her yourself?” After we arrived he stood beside me and encouraged me to do so. Despite some trepidation, I did. She too responded with laughter and told me “no- not at all.” Having grown up to have a career in journalism, I’ve often thought about my father encouraging me to ask that question myself – my first investigative inquiry.

As well, all of us were inspirited to not only have opinions about politics and world events but to share them at the dinner table. I would not have wanted to have been anyone who told my dad his sons, daughters or grandchildren were too opinionated – in clear voice and diction, perfect grammar and steadfast oratory – he would have put them in their place.

But little did I know that an annual Thanksgiving and Christmas tradition I took for granted qualified my father as a Renaissance man. I can still visualize my father standing in the kitchen holding the holiday turkey up before placing it in the roaster. The “bird” was roasted overnight and my dad would get up periodically throughout the night to baste it.

Now come reports this season of a ‘new’ trend – “Butterball” hiring men to answer calls for their turkey cooking hotlines. It turns out men in the kitchen with the turkey is a growing phenomenon.

So, here’s to my dad – who was clearly gobbles ahead of his time!