My father’s gone

Logan Music: Uptight

Louis Lo and Alison McCarthy Lo
My father passed away exactly 90 days after my wife did. How’s that for a kick in the head?

Suppose I’ll write more on that when I sort things out. Whenever that’ll be. For now, let me tell you a quick story:

When my father first met Alison, the two somehow got on the topic of hard-boiled eggs. You see, he was an amazing cook and a chef in his younger years.

He asked her if she knew how to keep the shells from sticking to the egg when they cooked. Alison said she didn’t know.

So he pulled her aside and whispered into her ear.

Her: (laughing) Really?
Him: (smiling) Yes, it’s true.
Her: I’ll try that next time.
Me: (to Alison) So what’s the secret?
Her: (laughing) If I told you, it wouldn’t be a secret. That’s between your father and me.

She never told me because secrets are special things between people. But her hard-boiled eggs always came out perfectly while mine always came out like crap. Still do.

If there is a heaven, hope they’re hanging out, trading recipes. She always loved to see him, and he, her.

Which makes sense – to know them was to love them.

My son’s favorite song right now is Uptight by Stevie Wonder.

The thing is that this is the song always made me think of both Alison and my dad. Probably why I play it for him so often.

The lyrics are below.

My father came here with nuthin. I was definitely born a poor man’s son.

But he refused to stay poor for long – people with talent rarely do – and I’m forever grateful for all he sacrificed for us.

He taught me how to be a father by being such a good one.

You know, I think that the dirt poor kid from Queens in me makes up more of my soul than I’d care to admit.

But it doesn’t matter. Not really.

Cause my dad and a beautiful girl named Alison McCarthy loved and believed in me. That means I must be somebody. Even if I was born a poor man’s son from Queens, New York.

I dunno what I am without them. Now, I’m forced to find out.

God, I miss them both terribly.


Baby, everything is all right, uptight, out of sight
Baby, everything is all right, uptight, out of sight
I’m a poor man’s son, from across the railroad tracks,
The only shirt I own is here on my back,
But I’m the envy of every single guy
Since I’m the apple of my girl’s eye
When we go out stepping on the town for a while
My money’s low and my suit’s out of style,
But it’s all right if my clothes aren’t new
Out of sight because my heart is true
She says, “Baby everything is alright, uptight, out of sight.
Baby, everything is alright, uptight, clean out of sight.”
She’s a pearl of a girl, I guess that’s what you might say,
I guess her folks brought her up that way,
The right side of the tracks, she was born and raised
In a great big old house, full of butlers and maids
She said, “No one is better than I.” I know I’m just an average guy,
No football hero or smooth Don Juan,
Got empty pockets, you see, I’m a poor man’s son
Can’t give her the things that money can buy
But I’ll never, never, never make my baby cry,
And it’s all right, what I can’t do,
Out of sight because my heart is true,
She says baby everything is alright, uptight, clean out of sight
Baby, everything is alright, uptight, clean out of sight
Baby, everything is alright, uptight, ha ha ha ha, yeah,
Baby, everything is alright, uptight, way out of sight
Baby, everything is alright, uptight, clean out of sight

Location: hell
Mood: dark
Music: I’ll never, never, never make my baby cry,
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4 thoughts on “My father’s gone”

  1. I started reading you some fairly large number of years ago. I think via 72nd to Canal. Over the years, I dropped off, just checking on what’s going on every year or so. I’m very sorry for the recent trials you’ve been going through – from what I’ve read in the past though, I know you’re swinging and kicking; from what I’ve seen you’re strong as steel, and smart enough to know it always gets better. Wish things were better for you Logan, but we all wish a lotta things – so instead I’ll say that as a total stranger on the other side of the country, you got this man…if anyone has got this, it’s you.

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