Throughout the years, people have been telling me to put my life and events down in book form. And, while I'm not nearly in a headspace to do that now -- or, realistically ever -- I figured I'd start jotting some recollections down, with no planned frequency. I figured the one below would be an amusing one to start off these writings.
“The thing about driving is…” “you never know what you’re going to hit…”
My father has such a weird way with words. His mannerisms have such an ability to catch me off-guard. Combine that with the variety of personalities contained within my group of friends and the interactions that might occur between them, and there’s plenty of gold to mine.
Back when I was recording at my friend’s house in Queensbury, I was greeted with just such an occasion. To understand the situation, one needs to know the layout of my friend’s house: a completely accessible basement lay in wait for any that chose to drive around to the back of the building. In order to do so, however, one also needed to navigate the gauntlet of trees and a swimming pool that served as the circuitous path’s borders. On top of that, right on the other side of the trees was a steep – at least thirty-five foot – drop off that looked like Death waiting on the other side for any that might slip down it.
While this may seem fairly doable, it was a feat in and of itself to anyone driving something larger than a compact sedan – and certainly more of a feat for someone in a larger-sized minivan. Yes, I know, scooting around in a minivan doesn’t exactly SCREAM “rock n’ roll” aesthetic, but it’s necessary and works well for my family and I, goddammit.
Anyway, one night of recording in particular – or perhaps it was for a party being held there; the mind fails to recollect – I ended up going over there with a friend later than normal, and the usual aid of sunlight wasn’t around. On top of that, the trees and bushes hadn’t really been maintained over the course of him living there, so the path continually got smaller. Before long, I started hearing a really “neat” scraping sound along the side of our car. It was one of those sounds where you instantly know what it was without having any experience telling you beforehand what it would sound like. The tree line was wonderfully fighting with the paint on the side of the car, and winning handily. In addition, it had rained the night prior, so the entire pathway was muddy, leaving navigation to be quite delightful. Before long, the car starts sliding and having a mind of itws own. As we’re nearing the final stretch before the basement door is within view, we start slipping right into the beginning of that aforementioned embankment. I believe at the time the Beatles’ “She Loves You” was serving as a very surreal soundtrack to what looked like our demise. We had just gotten SiriusXM and I played the shit out of that particular radio station (Channel 18 forever!) Somehow, however, the car righted itself and we were able to escape death that night.
After we finally park near the basement’s entrance and prior to me going into the house, I turn to my dad and before I can say anything, he just calmly says, “The thing about driving is…” and before he could finish his sentiment, my friend in the back seat replies, “You never know what you’re going to hit?” “Yeah, you never know what you’re going to hit,” he exclaimed. And, somehow, it just really summed up something about the experience that I couldn’t help but laugh. I’m still fucking laughing at it.