Blog Post # 255 – Family, Family, Family

Family, family, family.

The boys and I went to Guns & Hoses last night, a boxing fundraiser for the families of police officers and firefighters killed or injured in the line of duty.

Our host – Mr. John Simon, my old boss and always mentor – always rents out a big suite at the event.

John has taught me a lot about being a lawyer over the years.

But last night, he taught the boys and I a different kind of lesson.

John’s dad, George, passed away about six weeks ago.

George Simon and John’s mother raised 7 daughters and 3 sons, including John.

George was an immigrant from Lebanon.

He ran the Simon Produce Stand at the Soulard Farmer’s Market for decades.

John and his siblings are some of the most successful people in the city.

John himself is the best lawyer that I know.

He’s also one of the greatest human beings that I know.

Maybe there is a connection there.

Whenever John finishes a big trial, he goes down to the Produce Stand and sells produce.

He is super humble.

Last night, John and the boys were talking about how much the boys fight with each other.

John laughed and said “that’s ok, that’s ok.”

He explained that he used to fight with his brothers and that John’s own sons fought all the time.

But then he said, “boys, I want to tell you something.  The great thing about the Arab culture is its focus on family.  Family, family, family.”

He asked the boys if they understood and they nodded a bit solemnly.

John said, “your parents will always have your best interest at heart.  Other people won’t, but your parents always will.”

He again asked them if they understood and they nodded.

It was the same way that John explains complex things to a jury.

John continued, “so when you don’t know what to do, ask your mom or dad and they will set you straight – every time.”

I could tell that John was missing his dad.  His dad always came to Guns & Hoses.

John said that in one of the last conversations that he had with his father, John was complaining a bit about a family goofball.  

George explained, “help him, John.  Help him.  If he were not a goofball, he wouldn’t need your help.  And he’s family.”

John asked the boys a third time whether they understood.  They said that they did.

Solemn lessons on the evening before Thanksgiving.

Family, family, family.  

That is what it’s all about.