Sunday, July 09, 2006

Sunday! Sunday! Sunday!

Number One Son Jordan informed me yesterday that he wants to start racing again. Bike riding has been on a hiatus since he's more preoccupied with girls, football, girls, weight lifting, girls, the old Toyota in the driveway, and girls. He's taken a keen interest in girls. I think cycling is a primarily a means of staying in shape for football through the off-season, but he was interested in trying cyclocross again this year. I spent the morning putting an old Giant together for him.

This could mean we'll both be racing cyclocross this season! You didn't think I'd let him ride alone, did you?

"Sunday! Sunday! Sunday! Two hundred and ten pounds of ground-pounding POWER!!!"

I'm told those ads are called 'pukers' in the radio trade, but I don't know why. If vague reports of earthquake-like tremors start filtering out of Oklahoma, that'll just be me hitting the ground - again.

I'll press the old Centurion back into service as a 'cross bike, this time as a single-speed. I know I'm not competitive with the fast guys, and I'm certainly not going to make the attempt. Cyclocross is aptly described as a mass start event that quickly devolves to an individual time trial, as us slow guys watch the front-runners pull away. The last time I did this, I was lapped twice. I have few illusions.

Jordan, on the other hand, is not on the same planet as the rest of us. Like I said, he's thinking about that old Toyota, a 1985 Celica with 250,000 miles on the odometer. It's safe to say the car is almost used up, but it's perfect for a teenage driver. I paid $250 for it, so you know it's hardly pristine.

Jordan went on-line one day, and when I got home, informed me that all the body parts are available, as well as a new interior, hot-rod engine, turbocharger, racing suspension, and high-performance wheels and tires. "It's kinda expensive though, Dad." he noted.

I pointed out that the battery doesn't hold a charge for long, and it needs a new one. "Do you have fifty bucks for a battery for your car?" I asked.

"Fifty bucks! That's a lot of money!"

This may be one of the factors bringing him back to bicycling. The kid can be tight with a dollar when it's his dollar being spent. I've tried to point out that Dad is not a bottomless pit of money. I'm hardly even a shallow puddle of money. So when it comes to fixing up HIS car, it'll be HIS cash doing it. That changes things!

Of course, if it needs tires, brakes, or suspension, I'll take care of it. Those are essentials to vehicle safety and I clearly wouldn't want my son driving an unsafe car. I just won't TELL him I'll take care of those!

Jordan will be 16 and a freshman at the beginning of this school year. The Owasso school district changed the driver's ed curriculum and won't offer it until the sophomore year. Jordan was held back one year, so he desperately wants to get his driver's license and he doesn't want to wait until next year.

I made a deal with him. If he comes up with half the money, I'll pay the other half for private driver's ed training. The private instruction costs $300. He's been cutting grass and scraping together all his pennies.

Learning the true costs of automobile ownership is a good lesson for a kid.


Blogger Fritz said...

My son turns 11 this summer and he's starting to notice girls. I've seen that the girls are noticing him also. What do I do??

1:06 PM  
Blogger Ed W said...

I wrote to Fritz and recommended he get his son interested in amateur radio, and outfit him in the complete geek attire that seems to come with a license: short sleeve white shirt with pocket protector, black glasses held together with white tape, and the optional calculator (or in my case, a slide rule) in a belt scabbard. It's not an image that women find compelling.

My kids laughed hysterically at my high school pictures.

8:43 AM  

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