Driving with three sons is a teensy bit different than driving with one daughter. First of all, my daughter works at a flower shop so there are no nose plugs required. She also doesn't try to teach me how to duggy from Pocatello to Malad, so there are no ear plugs required. She also doesn't feel inclined to swap childhood excrement stories, so there is no need for me to smack her upside the head while shouting, "who raised you, again?"
The biggest difference, however, between driving with my daughter and driving with my sons is that I didn't get lost on I-15 with my sons. Mostly because I had already been there, done that with my daughter.
Which, if you think about it, is the best thing about getting lost, right? Not getting lost again?
See there is this one road that runs through New York. It's called Boston Post Road. Post road to those of us who knew it well. Like the back of my hand.
I was convinced that Post road would take me to infinity and beyond if I stayed on it long enough.
Either that or it would take me to China.
See I'm kind of a one road sorta gal. When I meet a road I like, I get clingy. And I commit. I'm just loyal like that. And at 18 years of age, Post road met all of my needs. It got me everywhere I desired to go. At least to the more important destinations, like church, Nathan's hot dogs, and Friendly's ice cream.
I'm only admitting this now because of a comment I received from Stephanie @ Diapers and Divinity on my post about how I thought I-15 was like the iron rod. She said, and I quote: I can't even explain why that is so funny to me. It's like there's something metaphysically true about that (to some people).
Darn straight! To (some people). Like me.
To the (other people), who are capable of having no-strings-attached relationships with the streets they drive on, it's hard to understand those (some people) who do.
Take my boss for instance. My poor poor boss. He was Italian, bless his heart. Italians have a way with words, that's alls I'm sayin'. My Italian boss was like the Cake Boss, only he didn't bake cakes. And I never heard him say the word fondant. Actually I never heard him say much. Unless something disgusted him. Like if you put mayonnaise on your hot dogs. Or if you said, "Oh my heck!" while doing jazz hands. Or if you drove up the driveway too fast in his BMW and knocked his alignment out of whack. He really had a way with words in those instances. And also when giving directions. He knew how to turn a phrase or two when giving directions. Especially if you stuffed your fingers into your ears and said, "La la la la la. I'm not listening unless you tell me how to get there from Post Road,"
Those words had a way of making my Cake Boss boss feel like drinking raw eggs and punching brick walls. Not in a bad way. It's just that Italian guys always think there is an easier way or a faster way or a better way to get where you're going, you know. And usually it's called the parkway.
At least that's what he always said.
But to me the Cross County Parkway and the Hutchinson River Parkway and the Saw Mill River Parkway and the Bronx River Parkway seemed like the hard way. I mean, if you got off at the wrong exit, you could never change your mind and get back on.You just started going in a whole nother direction.
Keep in mind that this was during the stone age when the GPS was just a twinkle in Gad's eye. Before GPS we used to drive uphill both ways in the snow. And sometimes late at night. In fits of tears.
And we liked it like that.
We liked it like that because all those late nights spent driving around (in a fit of tears) (uphill both ways) (in the snow) taught us a thing or two. Like where to go, for one. But mostly where not to go.
But most importantly it taught us how to find a way. A lost art if you think about it. (Get it? Lost art. (Ah, sometimes I crack myself up.)
Eventually I took my Cake Boss' advice and broke up with Post road. It was one of the hardest things I ever did at 18 years of age, in New York. But it was one of the rightest thing I ever did too.
There's a moral here. There's a definite moral here. There's more than just one road on the Atlas of life. And even if you miss a turn or two, you can always find a way to get to where you're going.
Which is exactly what Merril Hoge, of the Pittsburg Steelers, wrote to my kids on the football he signed after coming down the stairs from his weight room above the garage at his cabin in Island Park where we rent from him for one week of every summer. (inhale/exhale). He's never been there before and he'll probably never be there again, but for some reason this year he was there at the exact moment we were packing up our garbage, aka crap, to take to the land fill. He heard us shoving our crap into the back seat of our car and took pity on us.
I kid not. Merrill Hoge descended his staircase, much to our shock and awe, like a regular prom queen, and threw our garbage into the back of his truck.
And then wrote some swell advice on a football.
FIND A WAY!
That's what it said.
Whaddaya know! Not only do I have a knack for bringing famous people into my life, it appears I also have a way of getting them to take my crap (ba dum bum) while simultaneously giving me swell advice on a football.
Seriously folks. Merrill Hoge gives great advice. On footballs. It's almost like looking into a magic 8 ball when you read the stuff he can dish out on a stinkin' football.
FIND A WAY!
FIND. A. WAY.
See what I mean?
It really makes you stop and think what advice you would give on the side of a football, given the opportunity to take someone else's crap.