Soup of the day,or comic Relief V

The last time I saw Pidge Watson I told him, “Not a day goes by that I don’t teach my students something you taught me.”
That was right before I told him I loved him.
He died two days later.
I worked for Pidge at his newspaper from the time I was 17 until I was 40 and accepted a position as a full-time journalism professor at the community college. In addition to a mentor, he was a second father.
As my 30th year of teaching winds down, I still find myself sharing all the things Pidge taught me. I also find myself sharing many of his jokes.
I had not quite realized until the past few years that during the time I spent working side-by-side with Pidge, he must have told me a thousand jokes, few of which were off-color. Most were the kind today’s kids call “Dad jokes.”
“Know why we only have two kids?” he asked me one day. “Because Gloria heard every third child born in the world is Chinese.”
Stuff like that.
I never know when one of Pidge’s quips will pop into my head, but I can be sure one will.
Such as the other evening when I was ordering take-out food. “Soup or salad?” the person on the phone asked, and there was Pidge right on cue.
“I love soup du jour,” I can hear him say. “But the only thing is, everybody makes it different.”
Pidge died nearly 30 years ago. But to me, he’s never really gone.


Ed Ackerman