Thursday, April 17, 2014

Mr. Allison

After work this evening, I went straight over to Kinsmen Lodge to visit my dad.

I opened his door and walked in. He was laying on his lowered bed, fully dressed (black leather jacket, red shirt, turquoise bolo, blue jeans, belt, socks, shoes).

Me: Hi Dad!

Him: Oh hi! Did you get a good price?

Me: From when I sold my house? Yeah. Pretty good.

Him: Is Drew going to take over Langley Concrete and Tile?

Me: He sure thinks so.

Him: Who died?

Me: No one this week.

Him: Alot of my friends are dead.

Me: Not dead. They're still alive. They're in heaven right now. Waiting for you to join them so they can get the party started.

Him: I'm not going to die. I'm not sick. I feel fine. No pain at all.

Me: I know.

Him: You used to have a plum tree.

Me: Yup. You loved those plums. But I sold that house. I live in your basement now.

Him: You dooooo?

Me: Uh, huh. In that bedroom across from your pool table.

Him: Ohhhhh right. I have a pool table.

The music that is playing on his CD player is skipping so I get up.

Me: Dad, this CD is scratched. Should I put a different one on?

Him: OK.

I open up his drawer and see this:

(Haha. Someone is color coding his DVD cases. Just like my bookshelves. I love this...)

I grab a stack of music CD's and push aside his tower of recently viewed DVD's when he interrupts me...

Him: That movie that you touched, I was single when I saw it....

He keeps talking but I've sort of tuned him out because I'm taking the above photo.

Him: ... and she was single and wanted to see a movie ...

Me: Uh huh.

I'm now looking through his CD's, deciding which one I should put on.

Him: ... and it was a date ...

Me: Uh, huh. A date...  Hey dad, do you want to listen to this?

Him: No, that movie that you touched, that was the first one I took Hil to. It had Robert Mitchell in it.

Now I'm confused. I have my phone in my hand, so I google Robert Mitchell. There are many. None are actors.

Me: Do you mean Robert MITCHUM?

Him: (excited) YES! Robert Mitchum. It was a Robert Mitchum movie.

Me: (scrolling through movies that RM made in 1958 (when my mom was 18 and dating) and later. I list them off.) Thunder Road? The Hunters? The Angry Hills? The Wonderful Country? Home from the Hill?

Him: No. No. No.

Me: (Wondering how I'm going to get out of this whole train of thought we've found ourselves on, I got back to 1957. But doubt my mom would've been allowed to go to a movie with her 21 year old boyfriend at that age.) The Enemy Below?

Him: No.

Me: Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison?

Him: YES! THAT'S IT! I was single. And she was single. And she wanted to see a movie. She's never been to a theatre before. So that was the first movie we saw together! We were on a date!

Me: I never knew that. Wow.

I put all the CD's back in his drawer when I notice, there on the cabinet, on the stack of previously watched movies, Heaven Knows, Mr. Allison. Ohhhh. That's why this is on his mind. I've never seen this movie before, so I ask, "Dad, do you want to watch?"

Him: Sure!

So I turn on the TV and DVD player and it resumes where it was left off.

Me: Whoa, THAT'S Robert Mitchum? Man. He's good looking, eh?

Him: Yes, he is. And he falls in love with Deborah Kerr. She's the nun. And he wants to take care of her. He tells her she is special. And she almost got an award for that role.

Me: No kidding.

Him: Do you have this movie?

Me: Nope. I've never seen it before. Looks like a great movie.

Him. It is! I took Hil to see it on our first movie date. She liked it. She'd never seen a movie before.

Me: Well, that Robert Mitchum sure ...

Him: (interrupting me) Yes, and he has a son that looks just like him.

Me: Interesting.

A few minutes later, the movie ends.
I feel somewhat ripped off.

Me: Oh, we just watched the ending. Is it OK if I put it back on? I'd like to see the rest of it.

Him: Sure! It's a good movie. I was single and Hil was single and she'd never seen a movie before. So she asked me to take her to one on a date...

Three things I'm thankful for:

1. My dad's memories.
2. Gentle visits like this one.
3. I am loved.


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