I have said before I enjoy movies, especially older films. This week I’ve been tickled because Maverick season 3 arrived! Last year they released the first few seasons of Maverick (1957-1962) on DVD. For those who don’t know, Maverick is the story about two brothers: Bret and Bart Maverick, both gamblers and cardsharps. It is the story their travels around the American west in the antebellum period. Bret was portrayed by James Garner and Bart by Jack Kelly.
Among the many things I enjoy about the series; is the habit of the brothers to quote their father, “My pappy used to say…” Usually they were proverbs most people have heard with a humorous twist.
Never cry over spilled milk, it might have been whiskey.
Faint heart never filled a flush.
If at first you don’t succeed, try something else.
A man who sticks his head in the sand makes an awfully good target.
A coward dies a thousand deaths, a hero dies but once. A thousand to one is pretty good odds.
This phrases make me laugh, and think. One of the greatest things we have is our father’s advice. I’ve talked before about the importance of the handshake in the rural culture, that’s the result of learning from my father. Though mine may not put his bits of wisdom as eloquently as the Maverick’s pappy, over the years my father has dispensed his grains of wisdom generously to my siblings and I over the years.
What I think is special, and important, about phrases like these are their ability to keep our father with us wherever we go. If he is living, dead, or absent, his words are with you for as long as you remember them. Guiding and directing, offering insight when they can. Theodore Roosevelt once said that during the his presidency he didn’t make a decision without thinking what his father would have done.
Sometimes, especially in our current generation, it seems like we take the advice of our father’s for granted. My father and I are extremely different, and we have differing opinions on some aspects of life. But when it comes down to it I’ve learned what I know about character from my dad. I find it comforting that though we may not always live in the same town, or even in the same state, his advice will be there for me when I need it.