You know the great thing about this photo? That kid will still be doing things like that in 50 years. At least if he’s anything like the people I know… Let’s all hope and pray he doesn’t grow up and have the stick of maturity inserted into his ass by a bunch of earnest assholes with tucked-in shirts. Shit! I just had a full-body shiver.
Our son just called from college, and said it’s “weird.” There are lots of activities going on, and he says he’s taking part in them, but the whole thing feels like he’s away at camp. He’s wanting to know if I’ll come get him and bring him home for Labor Day weekend. You know, from camp. I’m not sure if that’s a good idea, or not. Toney and I will have to discuss.
I never went away to college, and don’t know what would’ve happened if I had. My gut reaction: I would’ve partied, never gone to class, and wasted my parents’ money. On the other hand… I might’ve felt the weight of the situation, and been compelled not to let anyone down. It could’ve gone either way.
I mean, I’ve always taken my jobs seriously — even the shitty minimum wage gigs I had when I was 20 or whatever. If somebody has expectations of me, I REALLY want to come through for them. So, if I decided that was the situation, I probably would’ve done the work.
But, I went to West Virginia State College for a year — which was like 13th Grade — and another year at Marshall University. My parents told me they’d pay my tuition, if I wanted to go, but there was never much importance placed on higher education at our house. So, I wasn’t really prodded along by solid expectations. Therefore, I hung out in record stores more than in class, and… wasted my parents’ money. Pass the beer nuts.
With our boys there’s no ambiguity about our expectations. So, hopefully that’ll pay dividends in the long run. There are no guarantees, of course. Neither of our kids have gone the extra mile when it comes to schoolwork. Both are plenty smart, but do the minimum to stay out of trouble. Just like I did. We’ll see how it goes.
As we were driving home on Wednesday, sad and teary about leaving the boy at school, I started thinking… He’s just at college, two or three hours away. I can text him whenever I want, and could even drive down there and have lunch with him tomorrow, if I’d like.
Just think about the 18 year olds who went off to fight the Nazis during the early 1940s. Can you imagine being a parent back then?? Holy shitballs. Or… even worse, parents who lost their kids to accidents, or illness, or war or whatever. I’ve got a lot of nerve, I decided.
So, I put in a Tom Petty CD, buried my booger-hooks into a sack of trail mix, and tried to wash away the sins.
What are your feelings on trail mix? I love it, but only the original version. I don’t like the fancy-ass kind with coconut and dried fruit. When we were at that bizarre Amish Wal-Mart, I bought a giant sack of the stuff for $4.98. The shit is fantastic! And perfect for car trips.
And let’s just make that the Question of the Day: What’s your favorite snack while driving? I also like jelly beans, if you can believe it: the kind with a million “gourmet” flavors. Some are good, and some are breathtakingly horrible. It’s almost like Russian Roulette, without the threat of actual death. It’s great fun!
What about you? If you’re heading out on a long car trip, what kind of snackables will you take along? Tell us about it in the comments. Also, what’s the most unusual food you’ve eaten from behind the wheel? Anything that would surprise us? We’ll need to know about it.
And I’ll see you guys again on Monday.
Have a great day!