20 AD (After Dad), letter to my father 2018

(past year's letters can be found at https://www.ryanmercer.com/?category=dad )


Well, dad... in just 5 days you'll have been dead 20 years. TWENTY YEARS. You've nearly been gone 2/3 of my life. Let's see, where do I start this year...

I'm inactive as a Freemason. I didn't even bother demitting, the Lodge I transferred to was a mess and never even sent me a request for dues until I was several months past due sending me a handwritten, in red ink, note on the back of a scrap of paper claiming I was late on my dues and needed to pay them.

I don't know what's going on with Doug but Curt lives in Arizona I believe with his daughter now. I've still not produced an heir and, since the girl that ultimately shot and killed herself, that hasn't really been anyone. 

Adam West died last year. I remember the day I found out, my friend Jeremy broke the news to me. There's this thing called twitter on the internet. Adam had 'followed' me on this platform for years and years, he still does in death, he didn't follow too many people and we were friendly with one another over the years. I cried and cried and cried when I found out. I shut myself up in the bathroom and just lost it. I think I took it rough not because television's Batman had died but because when I'd come home from preschool and kindergarten you and I would watch him fighting crime on tv when we weren't watching Hogan's Heroes, The Beverly Hillbillies or Andy Griffith. I told Adam about you once, that you and I would sit there and watch him on the television. I miss you both. 

Mom and I are moving to Plainfield in a month. Into an apartment. I still have the mushroom, your droopy horseman, and that droopy dog. They'll be proudly displayed in my room when we move. 

In April I'm taking a test for the Customs Broker license. Depending on what source you look at, it usually has something like a 3-11% pass rate. It's an open book test, however, the material is 6,000-7.000 pages. It's multiple choice but yeah... I bought some training material for it but I really don't know how I'll do, once we move I'll have a little over 2 weeks until the test and I'm going to take a few of the past years' tests as the publish the questions and answers to see where I stand. I hope I pass it as it will be beneficial at my current employer and open up options at other companies as well (or I could even hang out my shingle and have a go at it solo but I wouldn't likely do that). 

The remade Death Wish, with Bruce Willis this time, and I saw it last week. It was alright but the two detectives in it were terribly unrealistic.

There's also a man called Elon Musk. He builds his own rockets and is designing one to take man to Mars but earlier this year he took his electric car, oh yeah he makes electric sports cars that are pretty amazing, he took his electric car and put it on his newest rocket and launched it into space. He put his sports car, in space. What a world you've missed.

 Oh! On the internet last week I saw a police patch that I bought. It was the same shape as the State Police patch, a similar font and a blue background but said Indiana State Police Free Mason' and had a square & compass on it. I had to add it to the collection, you know?

Indiana State Police Freemason.jpg

Well, dad. I miss you. Until next year.

19 AD (After Dad), letter to my father 2017

(past year's letters can be found at https://www.ryanmercer.com/?category=dad )

Well dad... in just 8 days it'll have been 19 years since you passed. It seems like just yesterday I was writing last year's letter to you.

A girl I went out with a few times last summer, she was amazing...she made me smile and she just had this light in her eyes and was curious about some of the same peculiar things that I am... she shot and killed herself. That, that was something I wasn't really equipped to handle. We'd met through a mutual friend and I'd come home from work and watched some television then was getting up to head to my room to read a bit before bed when word came from the mutual friend that Stephie had shot and killed herself earlier that day. I sat down at my desk and effectively went catatonic for several hours. I didn't go to Lodge the next day because I was so tired and just generally out of it. For weeks I was a shell of a man trying to process it. I'd not spoken to the girl in a couple of months, she basically vanished after our three dates and to be honest I'd all but forgotten her and moved on. 5 months later and I still try and rationalize what she did even though I know there's no point. A week or two before we'd put down the dog we got after we had to put Mila down.

I've been on vacation this past week and honestly I didn't even realize it was so close to your anniversary. A young woman I am friends with on this thing called Facebook that is like a digital bulletin board recently lost her father and some hours ago I found myself poking through her posts to see if I could judge how well she's coping and then I went about my evening putting no more thought to it. Sitting here taking in some videos I thought I'd share with her that I write you letters every year and I looked at the date and realized wow, 8 more days until your anniversary.

I left Speedway Lodge last year after they voted to change their number from 729 to 500 after Oriental Evergreen merged with another Lodge and the Grand Master at the time offered it to them. I was against it, I was the only person against it, so I transferred my membership to another Lodge. Here it is March and that Lodge has yet to send me a dues request and I'm just done. I'm done with Freemasonry. They can't be bothered to send me a request for dues so I'm not going to go out of my way to pay them. If they mark me as NPD oh well. To be honest I only pursued Freemasonry because it was a way for me to connect with you and your grandfather, a way to have similar experiences as the two of you while death separated us. I suppose it gave me something in common with Joe too, I know he was alive for at least my EA although he was in no condition to come down for it... I don't recall if he was still alive when I was raised. It has always been my understanding he nudged you towards the Craft.

I don't know how Curt, Doug or Dick are doing. For that matter I don't even know if they are alive. I'm still painfully and chronically single. For all intents and purposes I am the last Mercer. I turn 32 in 20 days and have yet to have a meaningful relationship in my life so as things go I am most uncertain as to if the Mercer name will see another generation. I fund a college savings plan for a future child even though I have no one to even have a child with.

As the years pass I wonder more and more if I'll ever make any meaningful contribution to society, or even a single soul.

Memories are starting to flood back, like when we sat in the dark on your bed... that moment when with unspoken words we both told each other we knew you weren't long for this world. It was so long ago, I was 12. It was 19 years ago. I can close my eyes and be in that moment as if it was happening now though. I've long forgotten what your voice sounded like but everything else is crystal clear.

I miss you dad.

Mark Allen Mercer - Ryan Carl Mercer

Update March 24th: Curt has moved to Arizona with his daughter. Dick died more than a year ago and neither Rhonda or Brad bothered to tell us. My birthday was mostly uneventful. I worked and watched television. My co-worker bought me a really neat tin litho elephant that was made in West Berlin between 1945 and 1950, they key does not wind the action but if you push the scooter down a bit and move it forward it springs to life still. That was the only thing that remotely made yesterday feel like a birthday.


Letter to my father, 2015. Year 17.

Well dad, in 3 days it will have been 17 years since I watched you draw your last breath and you'd think by now writing these annual letters would be easy but they are still rather difficult.

Not much has changed since last year, I started CrossFit which is a fitness regime that's a lot of chaotic repetitive stuff combined with Olympic lifting. I also made more money last year than any year before by a long shot and probably more than I'll ever make in any year to come. Sadly I'm in the process of shutting down my business (well, at least the part making all the money) for various reasons and realistically I don't see myself ever being able to make the kind of money I am from it again.

I honestly don't have much else to say. Every day is basically the same in my life and honestly they all seem to blur together. It's quite boring and absurdly repetitive. I miss you dad, maybe I'll have something better to share next year.

Letter to dad 2014

Well dad, tomorrow marks another year that you've been gone and I still miss you. This past year I suppose I've done a fair amount of things... where to start...

Well I've met mom's oldest son a few times, he seems alright. I started an LLC late last summer, I sell peptides online like melanotan and PT-141 and it's been doing alright, I also link to some products on amazon.com with my affiliate link in my various blog posts.

I had to part ways with your truck last year, it served well for 18 years before something in the transmission finally went leaving it stuck in no, or every, gear. It was a hard thing to do, I went out and bought a slightly used 2013 Chevy Impala and it's been treating me well but I really miss the truck. The last day she was in my possession I cried like a baby just sitting in her, cleaning her out, and walking around her to get one last look at her. The truck was one of my last major ties to you and memories of things we did. If my business had been doing better I would have kept it and fixed it with the intent of restoring it but alas I just didn't have the resources (and really still don't).

That's really all that comes to mind. Write to you next year!


Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am in a thousand winds that blow,
I am the softly falling snow.
I am the gentle showers of rain,
I am the fields of ripening grain.
I am in the morning hush,
I am in the graceful rush
Of beautiful birds in circling flight,
I am the starshine of the night.
I am in the flowers that bloom,
I am in a quiet room.
I am in the birds that sing,
I am in each lovely thing.
Do not stand at my grave bereft
I am not there. I have not left.