Hidden Talents

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One of the things my dad had the ability to do, which always amazed me, was watching TV with his eyes closed; while snoring! It was one of those hidden talents. You know…the talent you hide from the rest of the world.

If he was at home we were watching some sort of sporting event. I’m not just talking football and basketball either. If there was a man and a ball involved and it was televised – we were watching it! In the event of multiple sporting events my dad would take the 19″, black and white, TV and place it on top of our console TV. The 19″ would have the volume turned all the way down and the big console displayed the main event. On really special days, when we were lucky enough to have 3 events of importance he would have his little AM/FM radio on beside his recliner.

When these sporting day extravaganzas rolled around I was usually stuck in my room bored out of my mind. You definitely had to become creative with your day, which might explain my ability to type 72 wpm on my mom’s Remington manual typewriter.

Mom's Typewriter

As I would stroll through the living room, I would occasionally (okay a lot), find my dad all kicked back in his recliner. His eyes would be closed tight and snoring. It was during those nap times I would uncover this hidden talent he possessed.

Quietly, I would approach the console, turn it down and gingerly I would change the channel. Slowly stepping away, sitting down in front of it and enjoying, roughly, 2 minutes of whatever show I had found. Without skipping a snore, eyes still closed, he would say, “Hey, I was watching that. Turn it back.”

It was an absolute annoyance! Every single time!

Annoyance or not it is a memory that brings a smile to my life as I remember it. Knowing it probably brought my dad just as much joy doing it to me.

As I sit here and write out my story I find myself being amazed at this uncanny ability. The ability to be so tuned into something you can sense when it has changed. The ability to sense a change in the atmosphere around you and to be alert enough to recognize, even with eyes closed, that someone was altering your surroundings.

In a time when it has become popular to blame our parents for our bad behaviors or lack in life, I am choosing to see the legacies of success and growth and strength passed down to me through my dad’s life. I believe all situations have lessons in them, you just have to be willing to look for them. Although this little story has many, I find myself drawn to this…

In looking at others talents – hidden or not – we can find something there needed to help us navigate our own journey. 

So today, my prayer is simply this,

Thank you Heavenly Father for giving me eyes that see and ears that hear when someone or something is changing the atmosphere around me. Even in my sleep!! (Matthew 3:16)

This is part of series honoring my dad called “The LESSONS of a Cowboy”


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  1. Carol LaRue

    June 22, 2015 at 5:46 am

    What a great awareness love your writingswould have loved your Dad!

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