I never knew my father's father. His name was Chet and he died almost a month before I was born.
All my distant relatives always tell me that I remind them of Chet. They tell me I have the same sense of humor and sensibilities. I love my father to death, but I think those traits skipped a generation.
My father is 29 years older than I am, and when I was home for a couple of days back in January, my father was waxing about turning 69. He started to talk about how he had 19(plus or minus, I really don't know) years on his dad and how different things could have been if his dad didn't die when he did.
Now keep in mind I never knew the man, but what I said to my father when he was getting misty was something along the lines of this:
He died ice fishing, right? (yes) And that was his favorite thing to do, right? (yes) (he fell on the ice and had a brain hemorrhage of some sort and was DOA when the ambulance arrived.) And I told my dad that he died running after a tilt flag, (which he did) expecting to catch a fish. I asked him how much happier could ol' Chet be? My father took a moment, (and I'll say he tossed a log on the fire for storytelling's sake), and my pop said that there wasn't anything that could have made Chet happier. He eventually told me that he'd never thought about it that way. Forty years he'd been mourning, and never thought about the fact that his father died when he was just about the happiest he ever could be.
All of our relatives that knew chet tell me that I'm a dead ringer for his personality. I believe in re-incarnation, but not that kind. Jim Morrison died just before I was born, and I'll bet there would be people who knew him who would swear I was his newest incarnation too, and Jim Morrison and Chet are pretty far removed from each other.
Which gets back to my eventual epic post about being a tabula raza for people and how I've made it through life by being everything THEY think they were, while I never was. But like I said, that's something else I'll write about when the time is right.
Anyway. The entire point I'm trying to make is that I really, really, hope I'm happy as I can be when I die. I'd rather die at the mermaid parade next month with two beauties on either arm, than in the old Mason's home in 30 years. I just don't want to die before my parents. That's the only thing that's kept me from pulling the trigger when I've tasted shotgun grease in my mouth in the past. My folks are pretty good people, and they don't deserve to wonder like my dad wondered for 40 years.