On the afternoon of December 31, 2011 I started work on this blog, eager to jump in and discuss political philosophy, pipes, tobacco, and anything else that came to mind. I was working on lining up other authors, and making something that I thought would be interesting to write, and something interesting for others to read. I journeyed on toward my family’s New Year’s Eve party, eager to tell my father about the ideas I had for this blog, and to discuss my vision for how it might have fit in with my life and growing business. At 9:00PM that very night, before I had even had the chance to say hello that evening, my father passed away in my arms. The cancer he had been fighting for over a year tore loose from his chest, and the greatest man I have ever had the pleasure to know, left this world behind at 47 years of age.

Not surprisingly, Of Pipes and Patriots was shelved as I made my way through the process of burying my father, and grieving his loss. Yesterday, on March 7th, my daughter turned four. As I sat there with her, thinking over the first four years of her life, my mind wandered to the relationship I had with my father. My father was an amazingly warm, patient, and caring man. During his funeral, even the pastor commented that he had never known someone with so many “best friends”. At least 6 people came up to him with such sentiments, and had I been of mind to note, it would have been 7.

At some point during my reminiscence, my thoughts turned to the pipe that I gave my father for his birthday, and the intentions we had of smoking together out on his patio this spring. I thought about my great grandfather, who was the only pipe smoker I ever knew before I took up the hobby, and I thought about the power of seemingly mundane connections to be found in such habits and behaviors. I am of the mind, that it’s the little things that often color and define the parameters of life and living, and that the small things are often the most cathartic. I would like to be of the mind that such things may also be copacetic. I guess time will tell.

My Father, My Son, and I

Donald E. Wyatt 1964-2011 A great man by any measure conceivable to man.