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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Honoring my father on Father's Day

Today is Father's Day and I have been reflecting on the relationship I have with my own father, Pablo A. Rodriguez. I have been truly blessed to have a father who has always been someone I can admire and adore. My father is a man who has overcome incredible obstacles in his life. He came to the United States, from Cuba, as a very young man, and through the years he has created a life that is all one could ever hope for. He had a solid, 40 year career at the Organization of American States, retired at a fairly young age, and has become an accomplished actor/model/voice over professional. He has the love, respect, and admiration of more people than many people even know. His friends have been his friends for life.

My father is one of the most positive, upbeat and kind people you will ever meet. Is he sounding too much like a saint? FAR FROM IT! He is an extremely flawed person, which he will readily and happily admit. He is more comfortable in his own skin than any person I have ever met. I can count on one hand the days he has been in a really "bad" mood. He is blessed with more personality and pizazz than most people in the professional entertainment business; and yet he invented and should have a patent for road rage. Inside a moving vehicle is the only place on Earth where he becomes an extremely unpleasant person. Go figure. I guess everyone has to have their place or activity to vent  anger and frustrations.

We who know this side of him do our best to avoid being passengers for too long of a ride. But, he is always ready, able, and willing to drive any of us anywhere, anytime and never complains about the trouble we put him through. I feel sure that in his day, he has driven his children and grandchildren the distance twice around the circumference of the planet. At least it seems like it. My father RARELY complains. If he is unhappy about something, he deals with it. He doesn't easily hold a grudge, and if he does, it is for a VERY good reason.

My father has been a "dad" to more kids of single parents than I can even begin to name. They know who they are. He is godfather to half a dozen children. I can remember him coming home from work in the evening, and all the children in the neighborhood would flock to him like he was the Pied Piper. To this day, he is loved by children and animals. He has a gentle, loving, kind expression and shows affection and tenderness easily. He is "Papi" to a multitude of people, young, and now, old.

I know everyone thinks their father is great. I KNOW mine is! He isn't a hero, a statesman, a millionaire or a perfect husband, but he has ALWAYS been a loving, accepting, patient and generous father. More so than I can ever in a million years give him thanks for. He inspired in me a love of learning, reading, the outdoors and culture. My father has inspired and support me through thick and thin. Sure he has been mad as hell at me, and we have had our share of hot blooded arguments. We are both Taurus and Cuban, so you can imagine that we have butted heads in our day. But he is a tender and gentle man with the soul of an artist and has more grace, dignity and thoughtfulness in him than an army of men.

It has taken me half a century to really understand how lucky I am to have Pablo Rodriguez as my father, my friend and my loving supporter. I thank him and praise him for all he has been and continues to be to all of us who love him so dearly. Happy Father's Day, Papi. Te amo mucho.


  1. He is known as Papi to so many it makes me proud. I love this man more than I could ever show him. He made me breakfast for years, drove me to school, made me laugh when I was down and even paid for braces. He is truly a father to me. TE AMO PAPI!

  2. Very well said, Diana... everything is on the mark!

    Lisa :)

  3. Great piece. Your dad has a lot in common with my dad.

  4. WOW!!! Your father sounds almost identical to mine... weird... :D

    Another excellent piece, DianĂ­ta, linda!!! xo...

  5. Oh, btw, that last comment was from Lisa Dols :)

  6. We have been very blessed to have such a wonderful father. Thanks for your sweet comments. I love you!