Saturday, August 13, 2011

My father

The past 2 months have been a blur. Most significantly, my father passed away last week 4 years after being diagnosed with metastatic prostate cancer. You have to give him credit for surviving so long in such a damaged body. He was bedridden because the cancer had metastasized in his spine and rendered him mostly paralyzed. He also had had a triple bypass some years ago, a stroke when he was 50, and had renal disease and had lost function in one kidney.

A month before he died, his youngest brother died of COPD and cirrhosis. I was with my dad when he got the call; he was devastated.

My father was a science teacher who loved music, particularly rock and roll music. He made his own playlist for his end days, and it's filled with awesome songs. It's all on Rhapsody, which is an evil horrible difficult to use service, so I can't quite figure out how to export this playlist to keep, but when I figure it out, I will share it.

One other thing about my father: he was a devotee of intelligent design and a critic of evolution theory. His criticisms were fairly nuanced and scientific, not based on religion at all. In fact, he was pretty much an atheist, though even that was nuanced in that he was kind of convinced that we all had lives before the one we're living, and as babies we still had memories of those past lives that we couldn't articulate. When he first held my daughter, his first grandchild, he said, "Sophie, where you been?" He would later ask that question of all his grandchildren. :)

My dad posted on talk.origins and later as a blog commenter, particularly on PZ Myers' Pharyngula, from which he was often banned for being a troll. On talk.origins, I believe he often signed himself as "Pookie, the kid from space." That was because his theory of the origins of life was that life came to earth from outer space in DNA, which acted as computer programs of sorts. He believed that the mutations we see as random were actually coded into DNA. Thus, I couldn't believe the irony that this article appeared the week after his death. He would have felt so vindicated.

RIP Dad.

2 comments:

Amy P said...

Rest in peace.

Laura said...

So sorry for your loss. Peace to you.