It was probably around 1982 when I was in high school. The car I was sitting in was being driven by my driver’s ed partner and she was pretty unsure of how to tame the big block that was in the retired police car donated to my school for our class. We were looking at the cones, that didn’t seem spread out enough for our car to pass through and certainly not with my friend behind the wheel.
I decided to break the rules because starting and stopping the way that we were had lost it’s novelty. I reached over and turned on the radio. Don Henley’s “Dirty Laundry” played and the car started moving with more confidence. I suppose my partner needed a distraction to keep her foot from mashing the break. We began passing through the cones without any fear. She was doing a great job. All things end, though, and it was all good until the wrestling coach, our instructor, yelled on the walkie-talkie from his ground control tower to turn the radio off.
We went right back to the herky-jerky ride as before.
Tonight, I was sitting at the computer and struggling to come up with ideas. I’m so far gone that I’ve resorted to trying to figure out what is going to happen with the start of school and there is still a month for the most recent plans to be amended. I’ve lost it.
Then, a couple of things happened. First, my wife shared some great stories from her family that were passed on to her by her aunt and uncle. They were new to both of us and we could only smile because they seemed so unbelievable in our lifetimes. It seems that even though we grew up many states apart, it is entirely reasonable to believe that our families have been paralleling each other for a couple of hundred years. Crazy, huh?
The second was “Dirty Laundry” coming through my little JBL speaker. The coincidence of the song, matched with the myths and facts of a family history was too much for me to ignore. My mind is racing and the floodgates will be open for the next couple of days.