Saturday, September 20, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Blame life in general for the white mustache

By
From page A2 | June 28, 2014 |

The ‘stache might finally have to go.

“Who has a mustache anymore?” notes the younger daughter.

“I do,” I say.

The last, worst reason to have a mustache is that everyone else has one, as they did in the 1970s, when I first grew mine. TV detectives, porn stars, ballplayers – in the ‘70s, everyone had the big ‘stache, thick as crab grass. Back then, I cared more about the latest trends. And didn’t hate change quite so much.

“It’s even whiter now than the last time I saw you,” my daughter says.

“I’ve been under a lot of stress,” I explain.

“Really?” she says.

I know, I know. I seem to lead this whimsical, anything-goes life, the Pied Piper of silly suburban obsessions. But my days are not all rainbows and unicorns. I have serious concerns as well.

First, I can’t understand why liquid soap suddenly became “body wash,” as it has in hotel showers. I mean, really? It’s like when beer became “ale” or financial advisors became “personal wealth specialists.”

I pay one bill, and another comes due. I seem to spend more on insurance than I do for such necessities as food and foot massages.

Meanwhile, our overpriced kitchen appliances last about five minutes past the warranty before the repairman has to replace a $600 component. And cars are far too expensive as well, even the cheesier Asian sedans.

A white mustache? Sweetie, it’s amazing I’m even alive.

I counteract what might be a steady diet of disappointment with humor and funny friends. Minus that, your kids will kill you. They will kill you, then eat your brains for breakfast.

I have pretty good kids, thankfully. Yet that white in my mustache? That’s mostly from them.

But they have help.

My bosses also drive me crazy, insisting on a day’s work for a day’s pay, and so do politicians and the pundits, none of whom has the slightest idea of what working Americans are really going through.

So, yeah, all that bothers me, and manifests itself in my mustache, the graveyard for a father’s cares and concerns.

The other day, I’m walking – I have no car now, an odd and vulnerable position to be in here in Los Angles. I gifted my car to the youngest daughter after she moved out, a sort of pre-dowry, and I hate buying cars so much I’ve just put it off and put it off, till one day I thought to myself, “Hey, maybe I don’t really need a car, L.A. public transit being so magnificent, its tentacles reaching almost everywhere.”

Hence, I walk a lot.

Anyway, the other day I was walking along, enjoying these first initial bursts of summer, wonderful as a sloppy kiss, and admiring the work the tree trimmers were doing on a nearby jacaranda tree – or maybe it was a eucalyptus. As with dog breeds and prime ministers, I can only identify two or three trees.

The important thing is that the trimmers were surgically denuding this tree, shearing it like a sheep, the way they frequently do in Los Angeles, lest we have any shade whatsoever, as if shade were some sort of urban eyesore, like graffiti or abandoned shopping carts – which shade decidedly is not.

I started to get a little upset by this, when I thought back to what my buddy Jeff told my son’s baseball team the day before.

“All we ask from you,” Jeff told the team before another loss, “is to greet each day with a level of exuberance never before witnessed by mankind.”

Coach Jeff was quoting another coach, of course, who was probably quoting another coach before him. Nothing said on a ball field is ever original; it is cribbed from other coaches, field generals, madmen and zealots.

Point is, in the face of all the things that can do us in – bad plays, lousy landscaping and life’s inevitable errant bounces – the only hope we have is an unrivaled exuberance, “the kind never before witnessed by mankind.”

I like the wry playfulness of that, the American sense of resilience that little inspirational quote captures.

Dads don’t live forever, you know.

So be sure to capture whatever you can.

Email Chris Erskine at chris.erskine@latimes.com , or follow him on Twitter at @erskinetimes.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Solano jobless rate drops, jobs rise

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1

 
Parsons files FPPC complaint against Bertani

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1

 
Memorial focuses on hope, healing from addiction

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Vacaville High graduate shines at tech event

By Brad Stanhope | From Page: A2

 
Vallejo man faces deportation after guilty pleas

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A3

New law aimed at urban water district reports

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Travis celebrates KC-10′s 20 years at base

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Highway 37 detours in place

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Maintenance begins on Rio Vista Bridge Sunday

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A4

 
Mother gives late daughter a voice by helping others

By Susan Winlow | From Page: B8 | Gallery

 
Fairfield police log: Sept. 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

Suisun City police log: Sept. 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A9

 
.

US / World

Record-setting retardant used on California fire

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
UC campus chancellors granted hefty pay raises

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Brown vetoes diaper changing-station bills

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Oakland mother charged in cocaine death of son, 2

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

California man accused of killing fellow gym-goer

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
California school gender equity ruling upheld

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

State to ban smoking at home day cares

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Driver of stolen van that hit dog gets prison time

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

License plate scanner networks capture movements

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Feds approve California’s immigrant license words

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Fence-jumper makes it into the White House

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Florida town knew shooter had troubled past

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Daughter calls Utah doctor a monster at sentencing

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
3 guilty in Ga. salmonella-tainted peanut trial

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Fierce fighting in Yemeni capital kills 120

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Sierra Leone begins 3-day Ebola lockdown

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Ambush suspect could be aided by dense woods

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
France joins US against Islamic State over Iraq

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

After vote to stay in UK, Scots must heal divide

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
.

Opinion

Lots of services available for Solano veterans

By Ted Puntillo | From Page: A8

 
Cheers, jeers for the week of Sept. 14-20, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8

Editorial cartoons for Sept. 20, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Fairfield Ford boosts animal adoption efforts

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8

.

Living

Today in History: Sept. 20, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Sept. 20, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: Sept. 20, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A7

 
Make sure you get educated during Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A7

Signs indicate California recovery will last

By Thomas Elias | From Page: A8

 
.

Entertainment

 
Fallon to pay up, broadcast show in Chicago

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B9

 
.

Sports

Big plays in second half lift Vanden past Center

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1

 
Legs power Mustangs in win over Falcons

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Indians score late but still fall to Panthers

By Marcus Lomtong | From Page: B1

 
A’s Lester holds Phillies to 5 hits in 7 innings in 3-1 victory

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Stewart slogs through tough day at New Hampshire

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Rio Vista gets easy football win over Delta

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

Keselowski wins pole at New Hampshire

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Gordon has suspension reduced to 10 games

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

After NFL, baseball addresses domestic violence

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Goodell: ‘Same mistakes can never be repeated’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Kershaw gets 20th win as Dodgers pound Cubs 14-5

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Raiders could be down 2 starters on defense

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Sharks open with new vibe after playoff collapse

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
49ers’ Davis, McDonald questionable for Sunday

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
This date in sports history for Saturday, Sept. 20, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

.

Business

The Kuro taste: Peppery tang and hint of squid ink

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Pabst Brewing to be sold to Russian company

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

China fines GlaxoSmithKline $492M for bribery

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Procter & Gamble cancels on-field NFL promotion

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

California adopts olive-oil labeling standards

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4, 1 Comment

 
Yahoo rakes in another jackpot from Alibaba’s IPO

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

Alibaba stock soars in jubilant trading debut

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Obituaries

Allie M. Zell-Jones

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
George Junior Rhode

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Charles Randolph Orr

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
Corazon Libunao Thompson

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
.

Home Seller 09/20/14

Average US 30-year mortgage rate at 4.23 percent

By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR2

New Standard Pacific models in Vacaville

By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR3

Real estate transactions for Sept. 20, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR3