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Der Überbertsch - De File
Does Collecting Make You Feel Dirty?
Der Überbertsch
Today is my father's birthday. Despite mild mellowing, his steely blue gaze continues to burn fiercely. Especially when it's time for something to happen, the happening of which has been delayed. Like lunch, for instance, the wait for which is captured in this shot I took at the Smithsonian last summer:

While it's not always easy to be on the receiving end of this look, I am ever so happy to have it in my life. He's a good man, my dad, and a shining beacon of Bertschness to boot. "Herzlichen Glückwünsch!"

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7 comments or Leave a comment
art_thirst From: art_thirst Date: June 14th, 2007 12:49 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Without you saying all that I wouldn't have read that much into that image but, he does have a look that I do, of course, recognize. My father sounds much the same way although, it was my grandfather that gave the looks. I also practiced the look and became pretty good with it as a way to get some control of my space. I don't do that now though, at least not consciously. I felt vulnerable and picked on a lot in my youth.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: June 14th, 2007 05:39 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Me too. Vulnerable and picked on, that is, though not at home. I like the fact that there's such a presence in the photo.
art_thirst From: art_thirst Date: June 14th, 2007 06:38 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Well, I felt picked on by my father about little worthless stuff. We finally got over it but, I was in my twenties by then. Even though it came at the time of my mother's death, that was really the turning point in our relationship. He reached out to us siblings in a way that was honest yet vulnerable himself and gave me some sense of control in our relationship. Otherwise, I felt kind of ignored and not special at all, except when it came time for any kind of punishment. And, thankfully, he has said if he could live his life over again he would definitely do things differently in regards to raising his children. That's not to say we were unhappy but, he could have been more attentive and hands-on (in a good way). You know, touch can be a small but, powerful sensation for children and their sense of acceptance. Don't think?
susandennis From: susandennis Date: June 14th, 2007 01:38 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
omg... my father had the same look WITH the arms crossed exactly like that. one of the funniest things in the world was my mom who would lovingly mock that very look. it got to be family shorthand - 'daddy crossed arms over that one.'
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: June 14th, 2007 05:40 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Yes, it's a look my mother, my sister and I know well. My daughter knows it now too.
celebrian_3 From: celebrian_3 Date: June 14th, 2007 02:21 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Yeah, you're not kidding about that "steely blue gaze." That man looks fierce--I can almost see his nostril flaring. :-) I'm surprised he allowed you to take this picture.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: June 14th, 2007 05:41 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Me too. I think he actually smiled afterwards, though the anticipation of lunch made it a very short, compact smile!
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