I talk about myself…a lot. So in the attempt to turn over a new leaf, as it is a new year, I figure it’s time to introduce the world (of 7 followers and approximately 50 readers on a great day) to the family who shaped me. And if in the end this turns out to be more about me than them…give me a break; I just started this new selfless endeavor.
Lawrence Steven Dell’Aquila aka Steve, LSD, Big Boy, Fat Boy (my brother and my take on Big Boy), L.L. Cool Steve (self-given title), and the newly minted Steve Larry, was born on August 21st 1955, to first time parents Eleanor and Lawrence Dell’Aquila. As a young boy Steve was…WAIT, don’t stop reading! I’m kidding. This is not going to be a textbook biography. Besides, I only know my father in the context of the 29 years of my life. Oh boy, back to talking about myself already. Crap.
My Dad is an outdoors man. He is more comfortable with a fishing pole in hand, out on the water, or deep in the woods than he is in any other setting. What others consider roughing it, is his idea of serenity. Dressing up is an un-ripped Carhartt tee-shirt and clean jeans. He sports a full beard and a hair sweater on his back that has in recent years gone completely white. We now dub him the Silver Back Gorilla. One time when I was young he shaved said beard. I cried and refused to go near him. This probably contributed to the decision to never shave it again, since I was his little shadow. Everything he loved about the outdoors, including the always necessary snakebite kit (a bottle of whiskey), he passed on to me. We hiked together, fished together, snowmobiled, shot guns, worked on cars, boated, skied, camped, and played every sport there is together. He says this relationship changed drastically when I turned 13. Maybe so, but we held on and the skills I learned with my dad during those magical years have carried over into adulthood. Oh yeah. He also ruined my fearlessness with his perfect impersonation of a bobcat as I walked out to the boat one fateful night in Wisconsin. Thanks dad.
What other traits and principles have I emulated or inherited that came from my dad’s example? Ahhh…a hatred to loose at anything and the desire to make everything in life into a contest that I must win. We are NOT graceful losers, although in an organized sporting event I participated in, I did develop the ability to hold it in until safely ensconced in the car. A wicked tolerance to alcohol, which I’m sure my grandmother also played a role in. An unparalleled work ethic and the ability to trudge onward through any setback the world can throw our way. The importance of family and the freeing power of forgiveness. And the knowledge that a whole smorgasbord of good food can always bribe the ones you love into spending time with you.
This is only a snapshot…there are many more dirty little secrets to uncover once I give everyone in the family a quick once over.
Well, I think I focused on my dad more than myself…if not, oh well, cause my coolness was a direct result of his cool genetics. And as my Dad so eloquently puts it: “The sun always shines on those that are cool”.