My dad was the Bill Cosby of Napanee. That's if Bill had been white, and moked 2 packs of Players Plain a day, smelled like Old Spice Cologne and cleaned his ear with a nail.
Maybe it was just that Bill and Dad were my soft places to fall. The two men whose ears I could whisper my childish secrets to. At five I told Dad, " I am going to marry someone like you."
At 12 when I told Bill Cosby I said, "I want to grow up and tell stories like you."
I heard Bill Cosby on a reel to reel tape machine. That machine was set up in the living room next to the piano and I would listen to "Noah and the Arc" and "The Lone Ranger" over and over again until I knew each bit by heart. Then, I would perform these sketches and my Dad would laugh like I was the original creator.
My dad had an amazing sense of humor but the comparison to Cosby ends there. See Jim had no ability to finish any joke that he found funny. He seemed not to understand the concept that the joke teller should not be laughing harder than the audience he's telling it to. There is still a joke out there that has the punch line, " Then I shot the damn bear." I have no idea what the lead up to it was or if that was really the punch line. I still see his face fold in half as he tried to eke out the final words. After awhile him just trying to tell the joke was as funny as the joke itself.
Bill Cosby has a star in the walk of fame. After my dad died, they named a road after him.
As my friend and her eight-year-old were driving down Jim Kimmett Blvd., the little girl said, "Jim Kimmett must have been really liked because they named this road Jim Kimmett Beloved."
Yes he was.
So is Bill.
It's been 13 years since Dad passed away and yet when I took a listen to Bill Cosby's tapes this week, I still knew all the lines. And as I was wiping tears from my cheeks I smelled a waft of Player's Plain blow by the window.
Do you have a favorite memory of your dad? Please share below.