My father, Phillip M. Lipscomb Sr. was a Renaissance man. He knew a lot. This wasn’t by accident either. He was always reading a book or newspaper, he taught, wrote, understood calculus, played cards, golfed, and practiced martial arts. He could repair cars, fix radios, and build. He spoke French, played the clarinet, saved/invested money, and was always ready for a good water fight in summer. More often than not, he was serious and unapologetically a firm believer in higher education.
He was the no man when I was growing up. When I really wanted something, it was best to ask my Mother. What I learned from this, was to be independent. He lectured us to no end when we asked questions. In summer, we read books EVERYDAY. He even made us memorize paragraphs for homework. When he was a fireman, he only worked 9 days a month. Summer vacation was ALWAYS a learning time for my brother Phillip and I. Even when he became a fire inspector and teacher at the academy, Captain Lipscomb had expectations for the family aboard his ship.
I remember feeling I had had enough of the public school environment. For a period of years, my brother and I attended St. Mary’s of Redford in Detroit. The expectations and set up of the parochial school system was quite different from the public schools we’d attended. I learned from both.
Excuses were not tolerated in our home. My Dad meant business. He didn’t want to hear about a teacher liking me or not. He didn’t accept homework or classroom assignments not being turned in. On parent teacher conference days, I knew he would be marching the hallways talking to each one of my teachers. I knew they better only have good things to say.
I am grateful that he took the time. I am grateful that he chose to be present.
He told me that as long as I’m living, I should be learning something new. Being a lifelong learner is what he lived and taught. Something New was born from this philosophy. That was his gift to me. That is my gift to my clients and audience. Thanks for reading my blog…