Fasten your seatbelts ... we’re in for a bumpy ride
Updated: April 18, 2012 5:28PM
My son is on a travel basketball team and well, guess what? We travel. A lot. In some cases, to a gymnasium in Slovakia.
No complaints, though. My youngest is thrilled to be a part of the team. Today, we are en route to Kenosha for a tournament.
We speed along on expressways. My oldest, a burly 16, is at the wheel. Those in nearby suburbs can tell, because of all the civil-defense sirens.
He endures lectures from his grumpy backseat father. I can only manage a panicked squeak. For example, after the near-miss with the semitrailer. My lungs stopped working and I had to be peeled off the passenger window.
My husband yells. “He didn’t have his turn signal on.”
“He had it on. You just couldn’t hear it over the screams.”
I am unsure whether I can remove my white-knuckled hand pasted to the seat. I may require the Tin Man’s can of oil.
Meanwhile, an insecure look flits across my son’s face as he weaves slightly, trying to correct a lane change. My heart goes out to him. He’s trying so hard.
I peer over my shoulder at my husband, who could out-shout Earl Scheib.
“You know, the poor guy’s getting yelled at in stereo,” I say. “You get up here and I’ll hook into a respirator back there.”
This new seating arrangement calms my husband down, and my oldest begins to drive with more confidence. We stop to fill up the tank, and there’s another moment of joy as my husband launches a tirade about gas prices.
We prepare to exit. “We’ve gotta be careful.” My husband fastens his seatbelt. “We’re in Wisconsin. The second they see ‘Land of Lincoln’ on the plates, they’ll double the speeding ticket.”
My son steers around a pothole-riddled parking lot. “Prepare for turbulence,” he cracks. “Hey, Dad, want to do some sightseeing?”
“We’ve seen plenty enough.”
We arrive at the new Boys & Girls club facility for the tournament. It strikes me: We could do a road trip scene out of “Animal House.” My husband could be D-Day; my oldest, Boon; and my youngest, Pinto.
And I would be Kent Dorfman, also known as Flounder.