Wednesday, November 27, 2013
GETTING A WHOOPIN'!
I posted earlier about the validity of a Mother's statement, "This is going to hurt me more that it is you." I think we can all say it is a matter of perspective and which end of the switch that you are on.
People often daydream and ponder what they would do if they could live their lives over again. Become a famous doctor or lawyer or some other 'high' title. Write a best selling novel, invent the ____________ and become rich beyond dreams. Travel to far away places. Gold, sliver, adventure, love, all dreams, just dreams.
Me, naaa, none of that crap. My dream would be to have seized just one of those many moments when we all(and I mean all) traveled to where ever in that 1952 Chevy. Mother, Daddy, two bothers, two sister, and at the time, my skinny ass little self.
I have no doubt that Mr. John Hines of Hines Motor Co./Citizens Bank fame, or Mr. Ralls of Ralls Ford Dealership, both drove air conditioned cars back in those days. The families of most cotton mill hands did not.
So we would be off on a trip some where. I am sure that we traveled in winter as well as summer, but some how only those hot, sticky, Death Valley days of summer stick in my memory. Three in the front, Daddy driving, Mother by the passenger door, and usually more times than not, PRINCESS, in the middle. This left my two brothers, older sister, and myself to eek out our territory a back seat that would barely seat three comfortably. There was lots of squirming, "he/she keeps touching me"(how could you keep from it), and many other things that Daddy found annoying.
Usually after less than 10 minutes on the road he would cantilever his right arm over the front seat and snap his fingers. It always had the chilling effect and volume of a .22 pistol being fired in the car. I always flinched at the report. No words, just one loud SNAP! To this day I can not snap my fingers that loud. I used to think that it was something the men learned in the cotton mill as a way to get someone's attention due to the loud noise those machines made, so loud you had to 'talk over them' even outside the mill.
The tingle from that warning shot would last about 10 minutes, then it was back to business as usual, complaining that if you were not by the window you could not breath, even though all 4 windows were down all the way and all the air scientifically possible was rushing in. Of course it kept escalating and Daddy kept boiling.
The next thing you know, he would look in the rear view mirror and you would swear that you were the only one he had eye contact with. He would then utter those words that every Father that is not a candy-ass liberal would say, "Do you want me to pull this car over and whoop your ass?"
THAT! THERE! THE MOMENT! The moment I wish I could relive! No, not because I actually wanted passing strangers to see me getting my 'butt torn out of the frame' by the side of the road, but I have always want to answer my Daddy something other than a squeaky little, "no, sir."
I have long wished that I had the courage(or maybe insanity) to give another answer. One like: "Why yes, Daddy, I think I would! Could you possibly find a good stopping place under one of those shade trees so as Mother and the rest can stay cool. And could you spare a few whacks to my lower lumbar region, I have a nagging backache and that might just do the trick."
All the jaws of my siblings in the back seat would have sprung open as if jet propelled, all the while recoiling from my vicinity so as not to catch a missed blow sure to come. All the while envying my bravery and simultaneously pitying my stupidity. In a single, ballerina-like movement, the Princess would spin completely around, landing on her knees, clutching the seat back with both hands, grinning like the Cheshire Cat at my oncoming demise. My Mother thinking the Communist might as well invade the U.S., as her world just went to hell. My Daddy, both beaming with pride at his baby boy's lack of fear of death, while glowing white hot with anger that I would challenge him.
Yeah, it's fun to relive your life with different scenarios. But the truth is if I HAD that amount of courage/stupidity the reality is that Daddy would 'seized up', white knuckling the steering wheels, and involuntarily pressing the gas pedal, causing us to run of the road at high speed, killing us all, resulting in me not being here to relate this fairy tale.
Sometimes it best to just keep your mouth shut! Strange though, it never occurred to me to make that statement to him when we were not in the car. Hmmmm, could it be that CARS make you stupid?