Blame Cal Ripken

My boys call me Pop. Not Dad, Daddy, Father, Papa, or Sir, but Pop.


Some of it may be my deep need to be different. Another part could be by disdain for people using “pop” when they mean “soda.” (Though not as bad as when I grabbed a burger to go in central Ohio and was asked if I wanted it in a “sack.”  . . . Ew.) But mostly, it comes down to my pure love of America’s pastime.

Baseball has been in my life since I was seven, and was reborn with the introduction of HDTV. Seriously, being able to see the rotation on a pitch as it travels 60’6″ reinvents the battle between the pitcher and the batter.

One day I was listening to MLB Radio in my car. My wife was approaching the due date of our first son. I was thinking about my future toddler looking up at me with loving eyes and a minimal vocabulary when I heard Cal Ripken talking about his own father and calling him, “Pop.”

My heart half melted. I smiled and simply knew. I would be, “Pop.”

A low maintenance name for a high maintenance reason.


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