Ok, I lied.
I said I was too busy to write this post when I wished you Happy Birthday this morning, but life is too short (as per your favorite rhetorical question “…how long are you dead?”), so I’ll spend a few minutes here on your birthday tribute as promised…
Happy birthday, pops! So glad you’re my dad. Here is to you and the dream of taking back the political process. You have shown us all that it is not only the adventure of a lifetime to tackle the mountains and the rivers, as you did here with minimal trepidation at the ripe age of 70 on a class 4 stretch of the Deschutes river in Oregon…
…but why not also fearlessly venture out to create a whole new way to manage our politicians with your laudable capstone effort, newgov.us?
“Fist in the air! Take the power back from the powerful! Create a movement!” you cry (in your own way, of course).
You will be 80 in less than a decade and even if many youth are too apathetic to take a stand, you step up to the plate. Or perhaps you just realized that the innocent next generation are not so much asleep as they are lacking in the tools to join the conversation with their elected officials about the many problems that plague them.
“No problem”, you say. “I will build it.” You vow. “They will come.” (Yeah. Sure you aren’t a man of faith;-). “No!” you declare. “We won’t wait idly by until some politician or party or special interest with deep pockets is ready to step up and underwrite it. Then it would cease to be a tool for the people”, you reasoned. “We shall do it ourselves.” Spoken like every great leader in history. How wonderful! How sublime!
Anyway. I gotta get back to work. I am still raising a young family and have to focus on one of my many jobs. But I wanted to at least take the time to say thanks for your mentor-ship, camaraderie and inspiration for all these years. I hope to spend many more years paying tribute to your future contributions to humanity.