Auto Repairs

Among his other talents, my father always repaired and maintained his own vehicles when possible. He can literally listen to a car being started via telephone and tell you what's wrong with the thing. Me? I don't know jack about cars. I can do the basics like changing my own oil, changing a tire, replacing headlights & windshield wipers, add coolant or wiper fluid, but that was all self taught. My dad never taught me anything about vehicles....I never stuck around long enough to learn.

Within 5 minutes of popping the hood, a tirade would begin that wouldn't end until hours after the car was repaired. I tried to stick around and watch him so that I could do most repair work and maintenance on my own vehicles when I came of age to do so. But as a child, my father terrified me when working on vehicles. He'd cuss, growl, scream, throw heavy tools, slam things and shove people who got in  his way such as my brothers and mother, and he'd occassionally kick the dogs.

When I turned 16 and started driving, my father constantly berated me because I knew nothing of the inner workings of a car. He'd belittle me and say, "You shouldn't even be driving because you don't know the first thing about how a car works." I listened to this for years until one day, at the age of 25 or 26, I'd heard enough. He spouted the same crap that he'd said countless times over the years. I was in no mood to listen to him and said, "You know what? You're right, I don't have a clue. Wanna know why? Because you never taught me anything! You were too busy throwing wrenches and kicking the damn dog! I was too scared to let you teach me anything!" I figured that would shut him up, but it didn't. His reply was that I had no excuse and should have put forth the effort to learn on my own and that I should park my car until I know more about what's under the hood.

What the hell?!?

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Mar 28, 2009