helmetforsaleA friend of mine and I were chatting today when he remarked that he had just picked up a set of World of Warcraft figures as a gift for his dad…

“Wow!” I said, “That is so cool that you’re dad’s a gamer!”

“Naw, he just likes the action figures.”

Still cool.

One of those things I really envy are those guys who have that shared hobby between father and son. Carpentry, sports, cars… Lots of guys have this. My dad and I both had a connection through art, but it wasn’t a hobby. He was an architect and I was an art major. It was never anything we did together.

Sadly, I didn’t really groove to my father’s passion – hunting – until after my dad died.

Guys like Wil Wheaton and GeekDad have it goin’ on. Truly.

Thinking on this today, I was reminded about an afternoon many years ago…

I was in seventh grade spending much of my summer playing DnD. Dad had been hearing the ridiculous press that the game was receiving. You know what I’m talking about: kids somehow getting ahold of real swords and crawling through the city sewers killing each other while the survivors rededicate themselves to their one trule master, Satan. So Dad was curious.

“I want to play,” He said one Saturday afternoon.

At once, I ran him through character generation. He decided on a human fighter. Dice rolling followed. Dad was a numbers guy being an architect and all, so he grooved to it. The problems came when he was purchasing gear.

“Okay, you bought a suit of chain mail,” I said showing him the price list. “Do you want to buy a helmet, too?”

“Doesn’t that come with the armor?” Dad was incredulous.


“Are you kidding me?!?”

I looked up from the rule book, confused by his reaction. “No, sir.”

I recall his next words as if it were yesterday: “Isn’t that kind of like buying a car and having to pay extra for the tires?”

My inner GM was newly formed at the time, and not near the jack hole that it would one day become. Still there was enough of the EvilBastard in me to answer him with: “That’s the way it is.”

And that’s as far as my Dad got with Dungeons and Dragons. I annoyed him far too much for him to proceed any further.

That memory tickles me.

My dad died several years ago.  We never shared a passion for any particular hobby, but I am so thankful he tried one of mine.

I miss you, Dad


This article originally appeared on my November 2, 2007  personal blog