Lou Ferrigno from “Lou Ferrigno’s Guide to Personal Power, Bodybuilding, and Fitness”.
I’d just gotten a new bicycle from my grandfather, and several neighborhood toughs had encircled me and were pushing and punching me, trying to get me to let go of my prized possession. Suddenly, they froze. Noticing that the rain of blows had subsided, I looked up, and there was Dad in a skintight T-shirt walking down the stairs of the tenement house where we lived. “Hey, what d’ya think you’re doing to my kid?” he queried, his voice stern and direct. “Do you think you can push my kid around because he has a hearing problem?”
He was growing angrier by the second. One of the kids piped up, “You don’t frighten me. If you do anything, I’ll tell my dad and he’ll sue your ass!” My father’s eyes lit up at that. “Oh, yeah?” he responded. “You go get your old man and I’ll beat the shit out of him too!” With that, all of them took off — and they were legitimately scared. I don’t remember a time when I was ever prouder of my old man. He actually stood up for me. He had shown me, not just in words but in deed, that he actually cared for me and about me, that he would protect me if he felt I needed it, and that he cared enough about me to do it. Although he never told me that he loved me, that was the closest thing to it that I ever felt from him. And, for the time being, that was enough to get me by.