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Father's Day Memories, Hollywood Mediums
And Our Disintegrating Culture

By Patrick J McShay

On Father's Day, I watched Tyler Henry - Hollywood Medium. Appropriate I thought, because he connects people with their dead relatives, and I wish I could connect with my Dad today. Dad's are important. Tyler is the new E star, who only does sessions with famous people, most of whom, he has no idea who the hell they are. It's understandable. He's only 19, and the way his Mom gushed about meeting Lil John, on a previous episode, was a little creepy, and said a lot about how all parents are a little odd in some respects. I've never heard them mention his father on the show, so I'm not sure if he's around. I don't think Tyler has seen a lot of TV, and that's not all bad. So the kid from the Brady Bunch shouldn't get to excited if he doesn't know who he is. When my kids were young I would quiz them about trivia constantly on actor's names, song titles, lead singers, lead guitar players ect... Good exercise for the brain.

Over the years the questions got more difficult,  and today they are more up on useless trivia than all of their friends. I'm sure they're thrilled. Alas, not a medium in the bunch. I really like Tyler, but I don't think he knows anyone who was on TV before 2016. He goes to the house and these people are sure he will  remember them from this or that. It's like, dude, his mom was in junior high when you were on TV, and frankly, no one who was alive when you were on TV, would recognise you now. They open the door, hilariously expecting recognition. They cut to Tyler saying. "I had no idea who that person was". The former stars always surprised  he doesn't recognise them.  He did recognise the freaking Kardashians, however. From their driveway, before he even got out the car. Figures..

Tyler then drove to Drag Queen, Rupaul's house. Rupaul started talking about growing up in a house full of women, 3 sisters and Mom. He said he loved performing for them, wearing frilly dresses and singing like his boyhood idol, Miss Diana Ross.Tyler even confirmed that mom was giving a thumbs up from heaven, or wherever she is now, This kind of behavior would have gotten the shit beaten out of you in my neighborhood, but, no matter, that is not what lingered as the most disturbing memory from his childhood. It was his strained relationship with his father that left the deepest scars. He began his harrowing story, in a trembling voice, about his difficult relationship with his father. He said his father made him  do things that made him uncomfortable. I was thinking, shit we knew something was messed up RuPaul, please go on.

Then he said, "He would pick me up and every day he would take me".... yes, yes where did he take you Rupaul? Some place really messed up right? cause, well, you know.... Tyler's eyes were as big as saucers by now, with a,"what the hell's next", look on his face. Please go on Rupaul... He'd pick me up and he would drive us to the to the Racetrack, where we would spend the whole day. Horrified Tyler blurted out, "A horse  track"? Yes cried Rupaul. They both had that Macaulay Culkin, palm to the face, oh my god look, like he just told him his father took him to a donkey show in Tijuana and forced him to perform or something. I'm like, wait just a G.D. minute Rupaul. You mean that's the shit that traumatised you the most?  

Like Rupaul, I first went to the Racetrack with my Dad in grade school, at JC Ellis Park in Henderson, Ky, not far from our home in Evansville, Indiana back in the 1960's. I loved the racetrack. He showed me how to read a racing form and always knew who the hot jockey's were. He loved to check out the horses before they'd race and seemed keenly aware of perceived injuries to horses, that he was sure would keep them from the money. "You see that"? Not really Dad. "See this jockey, Gary Stevens? Yes Dad. "I always put a bet on him no matter who he's riding."  OK, Dad. He always seemed to win, and he'd always give me money to bet . We'd go to the window together  and I learned how to bet a trifecta, an exacta and a quinella box before I was 10. You're not gonna get that kind of education at a G.D. Diana Ross show, Rupaul.

I gambled with him on the golf course, because he couldn't enjoy it without wagering on every hole. Hell, every shot. Closest to the pin, longest drive, Skins, Nassau, you name it. He got us kicked out of a crap game and the casino at 4 in the  morning in Vegas. Angry Dad,  angry pit boss. No matter, it was time to go. I once pulled him away from an increasingly hostile situation during a poker game after a golf tournament, to avoid an altercation that was about to get ugly.  I could write a book of stories of our times together. There was never a dull moment around Jim McShay. He loved to play golf and drink Scotch, which My Grandmother blamed on the Air Force. I was never embarrassed by him. He was the smartest, toughest guy I've ever met. My friends all loved him. Sometimes it was tough being his kid. I much preferred our adult father son friendship. We argued about dumb things. Sometimes after, we didn't talk for a while, and I regret that. The older you get, you begin to understand how quickly it all goes by. I still miss him everyday.

My Dad would hate what's going on in this country. He was definitely old school. He played football at Cathedral before they wore facemasks on their helmets, and was a proud Air Force Veteran, who loved this country very much. He played on a National Championship Squash team representing the Indianapolis Athletic Club and was a 28 year old delegate to the 1960 Democratic National Convention, where he met with JFK. We still have pictures of their meeting. U.S.Senator Vance Hartke loved my Dad, and, endearingly called him Jimmy.  He seemed to know everybody. Years ago, I was a witness in a case involving a good friend. After I was sworn in, the Judge turned to me and said, "can I ask you a question?" I said sure. He said, "Do you know Jimmy McShay"?

My Dad never believed Lee Harvey Oswald killed Kennedy and neither should anyone else. He never believed the official version of 911, and would hate the ongoing loss of liberties due to this manufactured war on terror; . He would denounce  the media censorship and these Neo Con led wars, and he would still hate John McCain, but maybe just a little more, as should any good Arizonan. He would wonder where we are going as a country, and would hate Trump continuing these senseless wars. He would hate the moronic decision to turn the Pentagon over to a warmonger nicknamed "Mad Dog," and he would definitely question Trump turning the Middle East Peace negotiations over to his Orthodox Jewish son-in-law, who's family is a driving force in the internationally scorned and reviled Israeli Settlement Program. He would surely hate this long planned, globalist led, refugee and illegal alien invasion of our country.

I still wonder If Cannabis Oil had been more accessible then, would he have beaten his cancer? Jeff Sessions now, insanely, says he wants to make criminals of Medical Marijuana patients.
 Before he could no longer leave the house, because of his terminal condition, my Dad wanted to spend the day at the track. We went to Turf Paradise in Phoenix. Got there early, bought race forms and all the tip sheets, and started breaking down the races. He won as usual. Hell, I think Gary Stevens was even racing that day. It was good day at the track. They all were.   Thanks, Dad.