Dear Future Stella,
Current Stella has two great-grandfathers that are alive and they both recently had birthdays. Despite both of their blindness due to macular degeneration they are still kicking and it is my understanding that someone reads them my blog each week. I just want that on video.
I already told you about Gopa’s 80th birthday party in this post. Your other one, Popi, recently turned 91!! Ironically, the two great-grandfathers that Current Stella has left are the two that are not genetically related to her, which isn’t looking good for our overall genetic longevity probability. Here are some of my favorite pics of Popi, just doing what he does best- dancing and sleeping.
I love talking to old people, wait- no, I actually hate it. They make absolutely no sense and they tend to smell odd. I only like talking to old people who are part of my family. Those kind of old people are awesome and so in honor of your Popi’s 91st birthday, I decided to ask both of them some questions for you to read in 20 years, you know, just in case they are not around to tell you themselves.
1) Do you still enjoy your birthday and how do you feel about getting older?
Popi- I enjoyed my birthday celebrating with Uncle Rick and Gigi. I am thrilled to be alive.
Gopa- I enjoyed my birthday a lot. Getting older is better than dying as long as I’m healthy.
2) What about your life are you the most proud of?
Popi- My children and their families
Gopa- Knowing Jesus and Goma
3) What hopes do you have for Future Stella (and all of your future great grandkids)?
Popi- I want them to have good health, be successful and live a long life
Gopa- Good health and a good education
4) What is your first memory?
Popi-My mother buying me a doctor set when I was about 6 and I wanted to play doctor with all the girls
Gopa- Catching fire flies in a mason jar in the backyard
5) Is there a special/favorite story about Current Stella that you would like to share with Future Stella?
Popi- The best quality time that I spent with Stella was at her Tia’s house at the pumpkin patch and the goodbye kiss and hug that she gave me after our last dinner together before you left.
Gopa- I loved the tea party that Stella and I had at Christmas at Gma and Grandpa’s house.
6) What is your most favorite meal?
Popi- calf’s liver and onions
Gopa- The one I am eating and the one I am thinking about next
7) Is there anything majorly different you would have done in your 20’s?
Popi- I should have gone to Canada instead of serving in WW2
Gopa- I could have been a better parent — spent all my time working and in college
8) Who in your family is most like you and why?
Popi- My son Rick because he lets stuff roll off his back and saying it is what it is
Gopa- My son Monty because he has the same sense of humor
9) What is the most spectacular thing you have seen in your life thus far? Is there any place that you would say is special or sacred to you?
Popi- The most spectacular thing that I have seen in my life is when I made a hole in one at the golf course on 6 different holes. Special to me was going back to Italy for our 50th anniversary and taking my pictures from WW2 when I fought in Italy and comparing them. It was 50 years since WW2 and the entire tour was watching while we visited some of the sights and compared them.
Gopa- Hydrogen bombs going off when I was in the Navy at Bikini Atoll. Yosemite National Park – both special and sacred
10) Finally, make one prediction about what you think life will be like in 2035?
Popi- I am concerned for my great grandchildren. In 20 years from now there may be another war to end all wars and most likely there will be another 9/11 since our security is so lax.
Gopa- Climate situations could be pretty extreme. Also, there could be extreme religious confrontations.
Having the answers to these questions will ensure that their stories will get passed down and their lives remembered. Family urban legends happen all the time when stories get twisted and exaggerated from generation to generation, so to further clarify I have added some additional information about their answers- the cliff Notes, if you will.
My takeaway from this is that your Popi is a pimp ladies man who eats completely repulsive food and favors his son Rick. He hates America and he regrets defending it. He’s most likely a Canadian terrorist spy who is helping plan the next 9/11. I find it suspicious how many hole-in-ones he said he got. I wonder if he knows that just because he couldn’t find the ball (you know because he’s blind) that it doesn’t mean it went in the hole. He said that his favorite time with Current Stella was at the pumpkin patch a few years ago, but based on this picture- the only person getting quality time with him was his bride of 66+ years.
Popi is a delightful man.
I also learned a lot about Gopa from this interview. Your Gopa apparently had a hispanic lover named Jesus that your Goma knew about and was cool with. He also mentioned being incredibly worried about climate change. This really hit home for me, because I too am worried that global warming is just a sick joke and I won’t actually get to wear shorts year round like they are predicting/promising. Gopa is bummed that he won’t get to experience permanent summers before the end of his life and that is really sad. If for some reason he meant the religious Jesus and not a Mexican boyfriend, then the only “religious confrontation” he should be worried about in your future is going to be the moment this blog goes live and Popi (who is Jewish) gets all cray with the Torah and battles Gopa on the very existence of this Jesus person. Its going to be epic and I can’t wait for it. Two super old blind dudes dropping bible verse bombs from across the country to once and for all settle the big question for Future Stella- What would Jesus do if he was partying with two ancient, vision-impaired great-grandpas?
Future Stella, I love you. Current Stella, in a complete lapse of judgment the other night I somehow agreed that I would sleep with you in your bunk bed for a night if you ate all of your dinner. You sleep on the top bunk and I never, ever go up there. What I found was terrifying. You had 30 dolls, 12 pillows, 3 blankets, 6 books, 2 water bottles, a protein bar, a hairbrush, a cell phone and 2 flashlights. What in fucks name are you planning for up there? I am no longer concerned about you in the case of an earthquake. You will be just fine up there for roughly 3 weeks. How do you sleep amidst all that rubbish? Also, it is absolutely frightening to sleep with your face 1/2 inch from the ceiling. How do you do it? At around 3 am I eventually had to leave because I kept rolling over on your talking Olaf. He says some strange shit, like old people strange. At one point he said, “What am I looking at right now? Why are you hanging off the earth like a bat?” What does that even mean and why does he say it? Do you have any idea how freaky it is to hear that sentence in the middle of the night? I shot up and slammed my head into the ceiling. Thanks for not having a first aid kit up there.
Here are some photos of your other great-grandpas who were not alive to answer my questions.