By the end, by the time my father's journey stopped some 40 days short of his 77th birthday, we had only a couple of topics of conversation we could discuss without tension or disagreement.
We both loved the Indiana Pacers and Tiger Woods. We could talk Pacers year-round. My dad listened enthusiastically to all my Pacers-inspired rants, and barked a few of his own. Father's Day weekends were spent on the telephone dissecting Tiger's US Open rounds.
This weekend felt empty. Tiger never led or really contended. My dad was just a memory. He died the last day of May. We eulogized his life five days later, buried his body next to his brother's and then partied at his beloved Masterpiece Lounge until nearly midnight.
I've spent the past 11 days examining our 46-year relationship, wondering why only Tiger and the Pacers survived the past decade.
My parents divorced when I was young. Their eight-year marriage crumbled because my dad wasn't quite ready to settle down. He liked to gamble....