But some are very, very good. We all know some of them, even if only by name. But they are fewer on this planet than just your run of the mill good human, and now the world has one less.
If, by chance, you have read of a blogging father that recently succumbed to cancer, you might already have read of one of my oldest blogging friends, Oren. He was probably my second blogging friend, third at the outside.
If you read about him in the Huffington Post or the Baltimore Sun or on his own blog, you already know that he helped people, that he fought for causes that he believed in with all his might, that he loved his family beyond belief.
Oren will be remembered by fathers everywhere. He is well known for his work in building community among fathers, advocating for fathers, and even encouraging fathers to improve their parenting. I knew he was building this community and I admired him for it. Yet I only skirted the sidelines on occasion because...not a father. Obviously.
I remember the day Oren announced his qualifications for what would become a major part of his life work. Just as I couldn't believe my eyes from my own pregnancy tests, I looked at Oren's picture on my computer screen over and over as if it couldn't possibly be JUST a plastic stick with some pee on it. Because a pregnancy test never seems like the thunder claps and confetti and general hullabaloo that should accompany the announcement of new life.
I can't say anything about anyone with 100% certainty, because hearing or reading a person's words is the closest one can ever come to crawling inside someone else's head. But I know that there were some things Oren wanted.
So I, with my measly, practically non-existent media influence (it is thanks to Oren that I even know how to tweet), will do whatever I can for his causes:
Oren wanted the media in general, and some companies in particular to stop portraying dads as imbeciles, dependent on their wives to make every last parenting decision.
He wanted Amazon to change the name of their mom program to include dads.
I hope this works so people can just tweet it. Because despite Oren teaching me to tweet...I wasn't such a great student:
Click to tweet about changing "Amazon Moms" to "Amazon Parents"
Hey @amazon we need your support! Please change #AmazonMoms to #AmazonFamilyUS in honor of Oren Miller #Dads4Oren pic.twitter.com/PwXaRTs66SApparently he also wanted people to go for a walk and tag it #lovewalkforOren. I'll be way better at that than at Tweeting:
— Brian Reasoner (@SBellasBigDaddy) March 3, 2015
I could go on a long, long time. And I could proofread even, but I've already made myself late for work.
So I only have this to say: Beth, Liam, Madeline, I am so very, very sorry. Oren's mother whose name I can't remember but distinctly remember arguing with Oren over Israeli politics, I am so so sorry. And the same for Granny Franny, who I never met even on Facebook, but I think must be Beth's mom.
The world is so unlucky to have lost him, but so lucky to have had him in the first place.
If you'd like to read more kind words about and for Oren:
Eulogy for Oren Miller
This is another of Oren's great stories. There are way too many, but here's one: Chicken Nuggets.
A tribute to Oren in the Chicago Tribune.
A tribute on The Good Men Project
And I almost forgot - the tribute video from his funeral and reception: