My Dad turned 70 this week, wow! We’re all getting older. We had a party last night at my sister’s house here in Florida, celebrating his and every other September birthday in the state- Theresa Taphouse, Eddie Livingston, Carole Taphouse, CJ Livingston, Sarah Livingston, Gail Clifford, even my dog Belle. My brother-in-law the chef cooked 24 live lobsters and a whole filet mignon, it was a great party. If I was in charge we would have had meatballs and ziti, something I could have prepared the day before, haha. The only thing that could have made it better would be to have had it in the Catholic Club or the Mayor’s in good old Roxbury with an additional hundred family members and friends. After the party I could have taken a walk to the Barn or the Bozos to see if anyone was out.
Topping off the party my brother Rob and his wife Theresa made the announcement that they are expecting twins in April 2011. Congratulations! The furry of phone calls began, people were texting, putting notes on facebook and hiding in the bathroom on the phone, shouting out the news. Fun!
I took some time to put together a decade by decade presentation of Dad’s life- alot can happen in 70 years. I also included a little of what was going on in the world, but since it ran into a 40 something page powerpoint, I’ll spare you those details. Email me if you’re interested and I’ll send you the whole thing. I told Dad I think he should write a memoir- there’s alot of stories and family history that shouldn’t be forgotten. That goes for everyone – it’s a gift to your family if you can get it down on paper.
- September 22, 1940- Edward Robert Taphouse was born in Astoria New York to Dorothea and Howard Taphouse. He had an older brother named Robert called “Howie”, and his mother called little Edward “Robert”. Already the Catholic Nuns have had an impact on his life. He has two younger sisters, Dorothy and Janet.
- Robert grew up on 46th Street in Astoria and attended St Joseph’s elementary school and served as an altar boy.
- Robert attended Brooklyn Prep and graduated in 1958. After graduation he joined the Air Force.
- His brother Howie tells stories of his teacher embarrassing him by having his younger brother come in and solve math problems in front of his class.
- Bob worked as a paper boy and at the counter in Taphouse Candy Store in Roxbury. He likes to tell us how he would wake up in the morning and serve himself a handful of ice cream for breakfast in the morning.
- Ask him about blowing up the cesspool behind the candy store
- Robert left the Air Force in 1962 and worked at Republic Aviation until joining Xerox in May 1963.
- He married Carole Ann Elk in 1964 and they moved into an apartment in Kew Garden Hills.
- They had their first child, Debra, in 1965, the same year they bought their first summer home in Roxbury at 226 Roxbury Avenue.
- Bob also worked part time bartending in Roxbury barn and selling real estate for Command Realty in Jamaica.
- He and Carole bought their first year-round home in Oceanside, NY in 1967.
- In 1969 their second daughter, Jeanine, was born.
- Ed continues working at Xerox. Bob was elected Mayor of Roxbury. This was most impressive to his children.
- He was also President of the People’s Association of Roxbury, served on the Board of Directors for the Breezy Point Cooperative, and was President of the Northeast Civic Association of Oceanside.
- In 1976 Robert and Carole had a boy, Robert, and they moved the family to a larger home in 1978, in Wantagh.
- Ed continues moving up in his career at Xerox. He enjoys boating, working on motors, his own and others, and golf.
- In 1987 he and Carole buy a new house at 391 Bayside Ave in Roxbury. Bob is busy tearing down, planning and rebuilding the house.
- Ed retires from Xerox in 1995 after 30+ years of service. In 1997 he starts working for Danka, a competitor.
- His daughter Debra is married to Franco Turriziani in 1995, and the whole family travels to Italy for the first of 2 ceremonies.
- In 1998 his daughter Jeanine marries Craig Livingston.
- Both of his daughters buy their first houses in Roxbury, and he spends many hours helping them with home improvements.
- In 1999 his first grandchild is born- Sarah Mae.
- In 2000, Bob and Carole buy a home in Venice Florida
- A second grandchild, Stephen is born.
- Their son Robert gets married in 2001 to Theresa Thompson.
- In 2001 Bob leaves Danka, they sell the house in Wantagh, and start enjoying retirement. He serves as President of the neighborhood association in Florida.
- 3 more grandsons arrive at the end of the decade- CJ in 2006, Charlie in 2007, and Eddie in 2008.
Here’s to 100 years more of living it up with my Dad and the whole fam damily! CHEERS!
I solicited a few comments from people via email last week. Here they are:
“ So one time Uncle Rob drove Jeanine and me to a party at one of her friends house, in his Camaro. After we got out of the car he peeled away – screeching tires….leaves flying….. Jeanine’s friends thought he was the coolest….lol”
“After everyone turned around to look someone said to me Was that your boyfriend? and I had to say “No, my father!””
” Uncle Bob taught me how to snap my fingers. I remember laying in bed all night practicing.”
“When we were in Disneyworld we were spinning in the teacups, so fast, and he had this teeth clenched in a smile, laughing evily as our heads were plastered to the back of the teacup.”
“He got me an interview at Xerox, and someone asked if I was Ed Taphouse’s neice- I told I didn’t know Ed Taphouse, I had an Uncle Bob.”
I also used to like to tell people my uncle was the Mayor.
“When I was a kid a bunch of us used to play on the West-End platform during the summer. I remember Uncle Rob wearing skin tight beige shorts on the back deck while working on his engine. At a quick glance we always used to think that he was naked from the waist down!”
– Thomas Durante
“Uncle Rob used to stand on the deck and make fun of Danny and my friends as they would try to get the boat back on the mooring. My friends named him SUPERMAN because he would stand on the deck with his hands on his waist turning his head side to side just like the original superhero!! Enjoy the party. On behalf of our family, tell him HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!”
– Chereane Durante
It is funny that your friends called him SUPERMAN, when I was a kid of 10/11 years my brother Rob was 19/20 and wore black framed glasses…all my friends used to call him CLARK KENT…(Superman without the costume).
I also remember waking up one very early Christmas morning to him playing silent night on the bongo drums.
Well………there are many nights when I happened to be with Mom Taphouse out dancin’ and drinkin’ at the platform on Mardi Gras…late! AND, sometimes, Mr. Taphouse would come to get her…I felt like I was in trouble with Jeanine again! Thanks for treating me like your other daughter…and for letting me sleep on the couch in the back porch!! =)
“ I remember Dad working for Xerox and bringing home the 400 pack of blank paper for me to draw with.
He let me pick out my own carpet when we redecorated my room- it was some sort of a red and blue swirling design, it used to make you sick to look at it too long.
I also remember my bicycle being put up on the roof because I didn’t put it away one time too many.
He used to tell me he was saving all of his toenails for soup- along with the lint from his bellybutton.
Dad took me to auctions to buy pinball machines and we had an arcade in the basement- nobody was cooler than us!
– Dad you always made me feel better whenever I got in trouble you’d say you were worse!
I appreciate the wonderful life you gave us from the pinball machines in the basement to the exciting vacations to Hawaii, Eastover, Hershey Park, California etc… You worked hard and provided us with the best of everything and I thank you for that. I am lucky to have you for a father and my kids are lucky to have you for a Grandfather. We love you!!!
In the 90’s when I was taking summer classes at college- I overslept and didn’t go to school. Dad came home when I should have still been at school. He asked me if I went I said yeah I got out early. He then went out side and came back in and said you’re full of sh*t the hood of the car is still cold. Damn he is good.
Another funny thing was when I was younger and I would fart he would say you know when you bring a girl home I am going to fart in front of her. Well Theresa is thankful he didn’t follow through with that.
I could probably go all day telling different funny stories about things Dad has done and said, I could also go all day talking about all the great things he has done for me in my life and Theresa and I in our marriage and relationship. Dad we both love you very much and I thank you for everything you have done for me and when I do become a father I hope to be as good to my future kids as you are too me. Honestly if I do half as good you I will be in good shape.
When I asked my Dad for a story he said most could not be published but he did mention that when he was in the Navy Grandma would send pictures with her letters and your father was always wearing my Dads clothes!!
” I had just started dating Ronnie (so this happened in the late seventies) and I was just getting to know all his relatives……I worked in Manhattan and saw your Dad on the street with some of his business associates…..I said….and I quote……”wow you look different with your clothes on”…….needless to say…..I meant that I had only seen him in shorts and flipflops……but from the look on his associates faces I think they thought something entirely different….I was so embarassed that I just walked away!
I would just like to add that being married into this family has been pure joy and happiness for me. I love you all very much and wish your Dad the happiest of birthdays!”