When I first became a grandfather, my daughter asked what I wanted my first grandson to call me. “Grandpa” made me feel too old, as did “Pops” and “Gramps.”
I finally settled on PhilPa in honor of JoePa — Joe Paterno — a role model for me. I graduated Penn State in June 1966, a few months before Paterno became the head coach, though he had already been an assistant there for 14 years. Virtually every fall Saturday since I have graduated, I have been glued to my radio or television listening or watching the Nittany Lions. When they win I am thrilled, moody when they lose.