I have a cool Dad. This is beyond debate – he played Marathon, Quake 2 and Half-Life with me, let me watch PG-13 and R rated movies with him before I was old enough, introduced me to the glories of playing music way too loud, gave me a cache of classic comic books to read when I was pretty young, stuck me to the side of the car sweeping curves “about 10 to 15 mph above the recommended speed is the sweet spot”, came or took me to midnight movie premiers (I think the first seven midnight showings I saw in my life were with my dad in company, regardless of other friends I went with) and even now is a sure bet for seeing movie that is loud and fast but maybe isn’t the best thing ever. There is more, but that was getting to be a pretty epic run-on sentence.
One episode that recently resurfaced in my mind was the stereo for my ’89 S-10, the trusty (and only slightly rusty) truck that I had for my first couple of years of high school. I had recently discovered Metallica and wanted a CD player in the worst way, walking to the back of Wal-Mart and looking at the head units wistfully. If you know me, you know that I was drawing up a mental shopping list and figuring out how to maximize my purchase based on the current contents of my checking account. I didn’t have a ton of income at that point, and when I brought up my shopping plans, Dad said “No.” You know, in that firm, brooks no debate way dads have. I think I mentioned that I was freshman in high school, right? Well, I got one of my buddies who was sixteen to drive me Wal-Mart where I bought an entry level Pioneer head unit, some truck boxes for 6″ * 9″ speakers, wire and an install kit.
Of course, Dad saw me sneaking these bags of goodies down to the lower (my) garage and in typical fashion it all went *boom*. I am sure I was in tears of frustration and he told me to take it all back, and back it went. I am not totally clear on the timeline now, but here is the punchline to the story.
He said, “This is the sort of thing a father buys for his son.” True to his word, he took me to Wal-Mart and fixed me up right. The truck boxes were re-purchased but this time the nicest Pioneer 3 way speakers were bought for them instead of the cheap Jensens I had brought back. He bought 6.5″ speakers for the door and head unit that was a couple steps up – it even had a color display! Then we went to Norby’s and bought a hole saw to make room for the speakers 🙂 That was the best sound system I had until my most recent car. Thank you, Dad.
The pioneers are still in their truck boxes in that garage when I refused to leave them in the mini-me S-10 when I traded it in. I hope that someday they will be pounding out the tunes in the Chevelle.
Oh yeah, my dad bought a muscle car for us to restore and didn’t say a word as I stripped it down to the frame as much out of curiosity and the desire to make it all new as it was mental therapy.
Yeah, my dad’s the coolest – and I don’t think he even tries that hard. It’s just who he is.