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You talk about your mother being an influential figure in your life but I would like to know in what ways your father has contributed?

Hello, I don’t expect someone who has read only a few of my blog entries to ask such a question. I’m actually feeling resentful that you’re anonymously asking such a specific question.

I love my dad.

I think my love for mother nature and traveling is from him. As a kid, he took the family out on annual vacations to state and national parks. We’ve been to almost every national park on the western half of the United States.

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I have a knack for thriller novels. One of my fictional heroes, Jack Reacher, was introduced by my dad. I’ve read 16/18 books in the series. Bob Lee Swagger and Earl Swagger are also fictional heroes whom I [embarrassingly] attempt to model.

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If it wasn’t for my dad, I wouldn’t be playing tennis. With the exception of a summer training camp, my tennis experience is fully self-taught. My dad was essentially my training partner and advisor. He always asked (rather than demand) if I wanted to play, which also helped him exercise. His insistence led me to go from saying “yes” just once a year, to playing a few times a month. He helped me be able to compete against varsity level folks.

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I’m a born and raised Lakers fan. I watched the NBA with my dad all the time. The We saw the Shaquille O’Neal/Eddie Jones/Nick Van Axel/Rick Fox era, followed by the Shaq/Kobe threepeat, and the disappointing Malone/Payton grand finals. After Shaq went to the Heats, I stopped watching basketball regularly. However, the Lakers brand remains the only team I care about today.

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To be quite frank, your question upset me. I’m ashamed that my dad hasn’t appeared once in this 3.5 year old blog. I’ve changed a lot since I began writing on Tumblr, and my relationship with my dad has improved a dozen times over.

Thanks for prompting me to share how my dad has influenced me. Thanks for your question.

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