What fantastic memories, folks! I particularly like Bibliognost's because it reminds me of a similar, though not as elaborate MacGyver fix. My dad was a chemist, although pretty much retired by the time he had me and my brother (we were the second litter).
My brother had a trumpet concert one horribly rainy evening and we went out to a fancy dinner before hand. In the parking lot, we realized the gas tank had a leak in it. My father, plopped down on the soaking cement and assayed the situation. He said "You guys eat and I'll be back."
He drove all the way home, went into the garage where he mixed together various bonding agents and plug-leaking doughs and ginned together a plug for the tank. He showered, changed clothes and returned to the restaurant as we were having dessert. Despite his shower, he couldn't get all the gasoline smell out of him, and you should have seen heads snap around in that restaurant as he walked in. Everyone thought the place was about to blow.
Happy Father's Day.
My father was not having a degree of engineer but he used to do all the things like a an engineer, which help me to think like an engineer and become engineer.
Thanks a lot for mentoring me to become an engineer dear father.
As a child I had a Mattel 'Creepy Crawlers' toy -- basically a hot plate with steel molds & bottles of different colored thermoset plastic liquids with which you could make all kinds of different bugs. Dad used to make the "plastigoop" liquids for me at his work, and on a few occasions he took me there to show me how industrial chemistry was done in the business world.
He taught me a love of science, and especially chemistry, from a young age. I almost became a chemistry major too, but my interest in electronics prevailed. But his influence in encouraging me to study math & science had a profound effect on the course of my education and my career choice, and for that I will always be grateful.
RIP dad, and happy fathers day!
riventree: your background reminds me of mine, only the places and details are different. My engineering experience has helped me understand the physics behind electronics, an interest that my father instilled in me from his constant curiosity of everything new; he was curious about the world around him till his last days. I attribute my curiosity about the world to him.
I remember my father for giving me Carte Blanche for dream to persue what I think is best for me. He supported them best he can. But it us my Mom who has more real and indepth influence on our upbriging, motivation and bright future.
My Grandfathers had only an elementary level of education; as does my Dad.
But, for those generations, and those times, this meant little. WW1 had the family scrambling around Europe as refugees - hardly a good setting for formal education. They immigrated to Canada as either farmers or miners - the only door open in those times.
As luck would have it, the entire family attitude is "learn all you can, knowledge is light to carry". Autodidacts, all of them. Self motivated lifelong learners.
So I ended up an EE. Flipping back and forth from pure design to FAE positions. I can't think of a more enjoyable calling then that of an engineer. Learn all you can ...
An attitude that I am afraid is rather rare, nowadays. What has been your experience?
Well I am a big fan of my father. He is not an engineer but he motivated me to become one. His thought process of approaching evrything with logic and continous curiosity of how things work had influenced me to keep asking why and how? he motivated me to learn maths especially geometry when i was a kid and always been a role model for honest and sincerety. Happy Father's day to all.
My father was a working poor siding applicator and did other types of carpentry related manual labor tasks. He was also an alcoholic, a strict disciplinarian, and at times physically abusive. Despite his flaws, he ensured that I would not fall into his footsteps. I remember learning multiplication around the time I was entering kindergarten. He would work with me on flash cards and I would have to get everyone correct before I could go play or go visit other friends. In addition, I remember learning geometry at a very early age (elementary school). He also taught me how to type on a manual typewriter by the time I was in elementary school and remember getting our first computer in the late 1980’s (a commodore 64 at my grandmother’s house and a MS-DOS based IBM PC at our house). He would say that I needed to learn computers, since they were useful for an ‘office job’ and the ‘wave of the future’. In addition, to the obvious forced learning, his love of science fiction, especially Star Trek, heavily influenced my love of science, astronomy, and engineering. We actually recorded (on VHS tapes) every single episode of the original series of Star Trek and then Star Trek the Next Generation. I fondly remember those times watching science fiction shows and science based documentaries with him. He also, as best he could with limited funds, encouraged my love of science by getting me a telescope and other items.
I am now a senior embedded systems software engineer at a large aerospace company and studying graduate level aerospace engineering and applied mathematics at the local university. I doubt I would be where I am today without the strong influence of my father and I know he would be proud of me if he were still alive today.
My dad was a chemistry professor, but he said he did more EE and CS work for his research anyway, so when I was in high school, he changed careers and became a software engineer. I kind of went that way, too, starting college as a biochemistry major and quickly switching to EE. I can remember the two of us putting together the Heathkit capacitive discharge automobile ignition kit (didn't work all that well) and the electronic dimmer/lightswitch kit back in the 1970's. Now I'm the dad and trying to get my 6- and 7-year old boys interested in electronics. I figure it's already predetermined; one was born on Kirchhoff's birthday (March 24th) and the other on Maxwell's birthday (June 13th)!
As a Greek growing up in New York, I soon learned that many of my landsmen were in the restaurant business. My father was no exception. At the age of 11, I was "encouraged" by him to help in the family business, and started washing dishes on weekends and sometimes after school. I was paid a wage of $1, which at the time was not bad, as minimum wage was $1.15/hour. After working at the restaurant for a year and watching my father working 14 hours a day, six days a week to take care of his family, I realized that education was my "key" to escape the family business. i went to college (first in my family) got an engineering degree and the rest is history.