Fatherhood and sports are  a good mix

Guy Dossi

Now that I’ve been married to the lovely Mrs. Dossi for over a year, the questions that we are being asked have started to change. For the first 12 months it was always, “So, how’s the married life?”

That question has been replaced by a much different one. It seems that nobody really cares about how our relationship is; rather, they want to know, “So, when are you two going to start having children?”

I’ll be honest; the thought of having children does freak me out. It’s not that I don’t want kids, I just have no idea what to expect. But I’m still young … ish … and have plenty of time to start a family. I don’t know how I’ll be as a father, but I do know that I’ve had a good example to watch in my 30 years.

The older I get, the more I find myself turning into my father. Maybe not in every way, but there are some obvious similarities. We both sound alike. We both are sarcastic and never seem to miss an opportunity to insert a joke when appropriate. And we both enjoy sports.

My dad and I both played high school football, but unlike me, his athletic career continued into college. From what I’ve been told, my grandparents did not want him to play football when he attended Loyola University in Los Angeles. He agreed. However, instead of playing football, he decided to give rugby a chance.

That’s right. Grandma and Grandpa thought football was too dangerous, so he went to an even more dangerous and barbaric sport. He played rugby his entire college career and I think he still feels some of the pain from it to this day.

My dad introduced me to baseball and football. For 30 years he was a teacher at Sonora High School, so many Friday nights in the fall, we would go watch Wildcat football. In those days, the area behind the visitors’ bench was roped off, but because he was on staff, he could go in the restricted area. During the games, Dad would talk to some of his teacher friends while I ran up and down the sidelines watching the game. I loved going to watch games with him.

It wasn’t just high school football that we watched together. Maybe 17 years ago, we had season tickets for Stanford football. Now before you start thinking that we would pay for season tickets to anything (I believe “Dossi” is Italian for “cheap”), we kind of stumbled upon our Stanford tickets.

A friend of my great-aunt had recently become a widow, and her husband, Harold, had season tickets. Now, Mrs. Harold wasn’t going to go to the games, so she offered them to my great aunt who gave them to us. The tickets came with a parking pass, which made me feel like a king.

When we arrived to our first game, we were excited to find our seats. They were located on the 50-yard line in row F. I started counting the rows: A, B, C, D, E, G, H. There was no row F.

After asking around, row F was the handicapped area. Evidently, Harold had some trouble getting around. Nevertheless, those were our seats and we sat down. A few minutes later, a security guard came up and asked to see our tickets. We showed him and without missing a beat, my dad said, “Uncle Harold recently passed.”

Harold had been going to Stanford games for years and everyone knew him. After that, we heard plenty of Harold stories and were never asked again why we were sitting in the handicapped section.

I might not ever get tickets like that when I have my own child, but I am looking forward to one day bringing him or her to a game and telling them that, and many other stories that involve their grandpa.

Happy Father’s Day.


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