Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Yesterday my dad, Tom Hayes, aka Dr. Tom, the Silver Fox, Der Alte Mann, turned 82 yesterday. Here he is with his adorable wife of 28 years, Geneva. For those who don't know him, he had a fifty year career as a physician and is the son of one and the brother of two more. If you ask him about his illustrious career, he will probably modestly tell you that he is a product of a trade school, albeit an exclusive one (UM), and that he is largely self-taught in all other areas out of necessity. He devours books, particularly history books, and maritime books like those of Patrick O'Brien (don't get him started!!)--but also sci fi, biographies and nonfiction. He searches for obscure documentaries on Netflix and he asks a lot of questions. He designs and builds HO train engines and wears jeweler's glasses to add the tiny little lightbulbs and wheels. When I was a kid, he developed a system for developing color photograhs and won awards at the Camera Club shows in St. Joe. He golfed like a madman.
His greatest love, though, has always been music. He plays the trumpet and is in two bands: The Bend in the River Brass Band and the Shrine Band, both in Evansville, Indiana. The BRB just narrowly missed a gold medal at the huge regional competition of brass bands. If things had been different, he would have made a great music teacher or professional musician. He practices most every day. It brings him joy to make music. He went to Interlochen summers and there are pictures of him, an elementary kid with big pink cheeks sitting next to a bunch of big kids. He played second chair.
He wrote me an email yesterday:
Just checked your blog and thought you would be interested in learning that I danced in the chorus of the "Firebird" at Interlochen under the direction of Martha Graham in 1937 - the summer that she was on the faculty at the camp (which became a full-time boarding school after WW II.) I did real good - didn't fall down or anything. She was a totally impressive person.
This of course doesn't surprise me. He is still very much alive and has a lot to share.
Happy Birthday, Dad. I love you.