After Philly: 2 hours in the car with Dad

While I was in Philly, my family suffered two losses. Sunday, in particular, was an awful day.

On Monday, once it was clear that my father was doing well post-procedure and would be released the next day, my mother made the trip north to Scranton while I stayed behind to wait for Dad‘s discharge. Her departure ensured that I got to watch The Bachelorette in the hotel.

On Tuesday, Dad was beyond eager to get home. After six days in a narrow hospital bed, being awakened at all hours for checks of his vital signs and numerous needle sticks, who could blame him? Dad desperately wanted to put on his own clothes and escape, but he still had a heart monitor on him and an IV port for medication delivery. While we waited for final orders, I used a lime popsicle to get him to behave and sit still.

Are all men children for life?

When he got sprung from jail the hospital, we made a break for it.

Together we drove up the Pennsylvania Turnpike in Mom’s Cadillac. Traveling by car with Dad is better than driving with my mother (sorry, Mom). He lets me control the radio and doesn’t criticize my driving.

In fact, he typically falls asleep for approximately 49% of any car trip. It’s only weird when he raises an arm and points zombie-like mid-snooze. Given how much he uses his hands when awake and talking, this should not have surprised me. Dad blames being Polish for that (and lots of other things).

We spent most of the drive tuned into XM-Sirius 90s’ station. Dad didn’t know TLC’s No Scrubs when it came on, but I noticed him tapping his toes to the music and took that as an invitation to give him the history of Chilli, T-Boz and most importantly, Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, as well as to explain the concept of a ‘scrub.’

Dad is now fully on-board with the fact that women don’t want or need no scrubs. A scrub would get no love from him should I accidentally date one.

Telling Dad that Left Eye was the one who burned down Andre Rison‘s mansion really put the whole story into focus. He seemed appropriately sad when I told him that Left Eye died in a car accident in Central America.

I was about to tell him about T-Boz’s battle with sickle-cell anemia and Chilli’s history with Usher, but then Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch’s Good Vibrations came on and I had to keep up.

Dad had never made the connection between the actor he likes, Mark Wahlberg, and the dude who “sang” with a funky bunch and lifted cinder blocks on a barbell.

I don’t own this image

I didn’t bring up the wonderful Calvin Klein campaign. There are limits to the things I will discuss with my father. I did, however instruct Dad never to call Mr. Wahlberg “Marky Mark” should he ever meet the actor. Can’t have Dad’s handsome face getting punched.

After passing through the Lehigh Valley tunnel, we hit construction-related traffic. Neither of us were bothered. We had great tunes and even better conversation to help us pass the time.

I intend to drive my father around again when I’m back in Scranton in a few weeks. We haven’t yet exhausted the possibilities of 90s on 9, but there’s still the 80s station.

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9 thoughts on “After Philly: 2 hours in the car with Dad

  1. about100percent

    Car rides with dads are memories well made. My dad and I drove cross country together fifteen years ago and we are still telling stories about it, the songs we listened to, the food we ate on the trip. So glad you have these memories with your dad!

    Reply
  2. Lance

    When I finished college and did a brief stint as a sports reporter in Philly in 1992 and 1993, I quit my job in May 1993 to runaway from a bad relationship. I had two weeks before reporting to my new job in my hometown of Atlanta. My grandparents asked me to drive a car from Atlanta to Minneapolis and back for my grandfather’s side business (car dealer). The ride back, 1K miles worth, I listened to my grandparents stories about the great depression,, WWII (grandfather was in the Phillipines), and all of the years since. I learned a lot. I was a smartass, punk 22-year-old who thought I knew everything. It helped me grow up

    Good post…and thanks for following me on The Twitter

    Reply

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