Happy Father’s Day Via Garden & GunPosted: June 19, 2011
I will get to see my dad again tomorrow, so we will celebrate his fatherhood then. I have been truly blessed with a great father. He is the epitome of the self-made man. An all-around athlete, he put himself through college and law school with athletic, ROTC and every other scholarship that he could find. By taking advantage of his physical abilities, he was able to train his mind and build a well-respected and successful legal career. He is an inspiring example for his children and grandchildren of what hard-work, persistence and determination can create.
My dad is a tough guy by nature. For him everything was always a competition. In an ironic twist of fate, though, he was given three daughters. He raised us well, and I like to think that we helped him find his gentle side, which we have seen him reveal to his grandchildren whom he adores.
When it comes to gift-giving, his present usually provides the biggest conundrum, no matter the holiday. In his mid-70s, he has everything that he wants or needs and, in fact, he has reached the point where he wants to purge rather than accumulate. Though I appreciate this desire, I love giving gifts and am always searching for the “perfect” one.
I am hoping that this Father’s Day I have found it. I’ve mentioned before that my new favorite magazine is Garden & Gun. Well, guess what subscription he is getting? He can recycle it when he finishes an issue, but it is the kind of magazine that many people will want to keep.
The name of the magazine is a bit misleading. Garden & Gun is not all about harvesting and hunting. While it contains its share of odes to the perfect field dog, its pages celebrate the South in all of its beauty and eccentricities.
Though my dad is not a deerhunter and mowing the grass and trimming the hedges is about the only gardening that he has ever done, I do believe Garden & Gun will appeal to him. First, the magazine itself is beautiful to touch and hold. More of a matte finish than a glossy, the pages have physical heft. Second, its contributors include some of the best writers in the South, including Roy Blunt, jr., Clyde Edgerton, Lee Smith and one of my personal favorites, Julia Reed. Jon Meacham, Rick Bragg (with whom I once shared a hilarious lunch), Tom Brokaw, Logan Ward and Dominique Browning have also graced the pages of Garden & Gun with their varied styles and points of view. The stories often contain in-depth portraits of the people, places and things that make the South so unique. I know that my dad will love the spread in the current issue about Chattanooga, where we spent 10 wonderful years when I was a teen.
My dad is Yankee born and bred, but after almost 30 years of southern living, he wouldn’t reside anywhere but in the South. Now a proud and active citizen of the state of South Carolina, I am confident that he will appreciate this magazine, which is published up the road from him in Charleston. Happy Father’s Day, Dad! I hope that you find moments of pleasure in the pages of Garden & Gun. As your daughter, that is the least and yet the best that I can hope to give you.