A Father and a (Southern) Gentleman

June 14, 2016

10  comments


Gentleman rules. Leslie Anne Tarabella-blog
If your father is a gentleman, consider yourself blessed. And if he’s a Southern gentleman, you won the big prize. But more frequently, we’re seeing a new kind of Southern daddy. One who migrated here from parts unknown.

 

I was introduced to a regular, run-of-the-mill gentleman when I was in my twenties and first traveled to New York City. Battling a snow storm and lost as last year’s Easter egg, I did the Southern thing and spoke out loud to everyone, but to no one in particular on a street corner. “Can someone please tell me how to get to Lincoln Center?” I sweetly asked. The crowd ignored me and wouldn’t even look me in the eye so I could mesmerize them with the smile and eye-bat I’d been taught to use when in dire need of help.

What is a gentleman? Leslie Anne Tarabella - blogWhen the “walk” sign flashed, a man, who was my father’s age, glanced at me and jerked his head indicating, “this way.” Not wearing appropriate shoes for snow (but looking very cute, I must say) I slid, slipped and scampered after him as we turned first down one street, then another. After several blocks, the man lifted his chin, and said, “There.” I looked, and sure enough, my iconic destination was straight ahead. “Thank you! I really do appreciate your kindness and . . .”  He was gone. A gentleman indeed, but not anything like the men I knew from back home.A Southern Gentleman Father - Leslie Anne Tarabella - blog

Had I been lost in Birmingham or Savannah, a Southern gentleman would have helped me find my destination, but by the time we arrived, we would have discovered we both loved fried squash and he taught tennis to my sorority sister’s little sister nicknamed Sister.

Leslie Anne TarabellaMy own father set a good example of what a Southern gentleman should be. Daddy’s an outdoorsman who also appreciates . . . click HERE to finish reading the story.

  • I needed this delightful post. It’s been a sad week here in FL and here it is Father’s Day coming up and I’ve pushed it to the background. Both of the gentlemen in your life sound like my kind of people, Leslie Anne. My own father would have liked both of them.

    Happy Father’s Day to them,
    Dewena
    P.S. Oh the men I used to see in church wearing their seersucker suits on Sunday! A white haired gentleman was my favorite. His suit looked ancient and soft as candy cotton.

    • You have had a rough welcome to your new state, haven’t you? So much tragedy these days, and I hope you are hanging in there. You are so right about the seersucker getting better over time. My seersucker dress was looking just right, and then somehow, it just shrunk right up! Now, how in the world did that happen? I’m holding on to it and hoping it somehow gets larger again soon.
      Hope you and the men around you have a happy weekend.

  • Leslie Anne, your Dad sounds just like my Dad! I feel so blessed to still have my almost 86 year old precious Daddy. It seems that your wonderful Southern heritage has definitely rubbed off on your hubs! Happy Father’S Day to your men!

  • Your daddy’s adorable Leslie Anne, and I’ll have to remember that descriptive cranky Yankee term! Have fun with the dads on Father’s Day-

  • Wonderful post! My own late Daddy was a gentleman, too, although not as polished as some. He was a self-made man in every sense of the word, though, and I consider myself fortunate to have been his daughter, even though he drove me to distraction sometimes. You were a lucky girl indeed.

    • Being polished isn’t always a sign of a gentleman. As you know, there are some rough looking farmers who are as well mannered as Rhett Butler.

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