South Pasadena City Council member Bob Joe wondered out loud how many fathers and grandfathers were in the audience during Friday’s Father’s Day BBQ Luncheon at the local Senior Center.
“Raise your hand high,” he said, speaking into the microphone.
“Are there any great-great grandfathers?” he added, looking into the crowd.
A few hands shot up.
Joe, a jovial soul, who brings out the most of every opportunity, was enjoying the fun, encouraging guests to laugh and enjoy Father’s Day, and laugh at their dad’s jokes.
“No matter if they are funny or not, just laugh,” insisted the smiling Joe, before passing along what he called a ‘Dad Wisdom’: “Why in a country of free speech are their phone bills?” he asked, hearing laughter, following that up by saying: “A man knows he is growing old because he’s beginning to look like his father.”
The councilman then enjoyed a more serious moment, noting: “No man stands taller when he stoops to help a child” – Abraham Lincoln.
Next came, “My father gave the greatest gift anyone could give – another person. He believed in me” – the late Jim Valvano, basketball coach.
And, one more from a late legend. “The most important thing in the world is family and love,” recalling the words of former UCLA basketball coach John Wooden.
Joe told audience members that the first Father’s Day was celebrated on June 19, 1910 while Mother’s Day was initially recognized on May 10, 1908.
Those on hand enjoyed the fun, laughter and poignant messages. DJ Ben Rushing, busy spinning tunes for the seniors, provided entertainment. Golden Oaks Apartments and Anthem Blue Cross donated the food.
Dodger Historian Mark Langill, a longtime South Pasadena resident, provided free Dodger t-shirts.
An ovation followed the offering by the Major League Baseball team. “If you’re not a Dodger fan, you’ll become a Dodger fan,” joked Liliana Torres, the community services supervisor, recognizing the generosity on the team.