August 15, 2013

Good Men

I love older gentlemen (like my late Dad) born, raised, and educated in the 20s and 30s. They had/have a code, a creed. They keep keeping on as best they can. They may lose wives after intense, loving, despairing battles with dementia or other ailments, while dismissing their own ongoing bouts with prostate cancer.

Their buddies of 60+ years pass on, their children die before them, and they cautiously phone "pups" like me in my 50s, to let me know, hoping they're not intruding, though they've mentored me for decades.

They phone because they're not even on email, much less FB, and they would never, ever, whine in public, much less in a forum like FB about how busy or tired they were, or brag about what wonderful things they were doing.

They may call again, a day or two later, because yes, of course they're hurting and lonely, but there's no way they'd let on.

Perhaps the next call my wife answers, and they love talking to "a girl" who gives them undivided attention. They flirt, and tell stories about how at 89, they're watching out for their deceased buddies' wives, taking them to get groceries, and making sure they're OK. Not to mention the 85-year-old "girl" on the third floor with the lovely flowers on her balcony, who has also been enticed to participate in the group shopping trips and outings.

Being a man in those days meant taking full care and responsibility for your wife and daughters, and sons, and neighbours, and they still want so hard to do that.

And yet they're not patriarchal, or hegemonic, or whatever.

They're just good men.

Posted by Paul at August 15, 2013 03:18 PM