Drug testing

Son, Can I Use The Car Tonight?

I recall somewhere in the recesses of my aging brain a time past when kids actually asked to borrow the family car for the evening. Heck, I even recall myself uttering that request to my folks many times. In fact, it was a science. If you had a hot date (in my case that was more a generic term for any reason to get away) you waited all day for the right time to pop the request.

Sometimes doing those little chores you normally avoided just to put the parental decision-maker (knowing which parent to ask was most important) in a good frame of mind. And then once you asked the question it was important that you grovel a bit and look sincere as the one granting your wish dangled the keys like a carrot on a stick while reciting the familiar drive-carefully-and-pay for the gas-you-use-and-I-want-you-back-by-eleven speech (sometimes with future 'chore' clauses you had to promise to accomplish). Without a doubt it was the artful application of psychology, persuasion, and negotiation, spawned by greed and selfishness, which in the end resulted in loving extortion. But it was the right of passage when you were a teenager.

Well, my friends, I am sorry to say that all that has passed into history like the Model T. Why, you ask? Well, for us it seemed to have all started when our three charming offspring entered high school. One of the 'advantages' to living in suburbia is that the school is generally on the other side of town. My wife and I hail from a large urban area and all the schools were within walking distance. We never complained about the walk because our parents had to walk 5 miles to school everyday butt naked in a blinding snowstorm during The Great Depression. But not our kids. They wouldn't even wait a block away for public transportation on a pleasant Summer's day (that's so un-cool). See, the problem is that thing in high school called 'extra-curricular activities'. It doesn't matter what sport, club, or activity it is, they all get out at different times. As a result my wife and I have spent our formative middle aged years schlepping our young not-so-innocents to and from the school.. sometimes multiple times a day. Couple that with catering to their social requirements of being dropped off or picked up at friends' homes (also across town)it's no wonder we were too weary to go to PTA meetings.

So one day as I sat in front of the school on slow burn as the fencing club was again going into overtime I vowed that this would all stop when the kids got their licenses. We are far from rich but I decided there and then to make sure all three of them have a car even if it was just rust and duct tape. I had more important things I could be doing, like earning money and paying bills and other fun adult things. Since my kids are all close in age they all pretty much got their 'passes to freedom' at the same time and all three were chomping at the bit at the idea of their folks buying them each a car. They were even quite willing to provide their own input as to their preferred vehicle of choice, even if it was going to be something used.. oh, maybe a year or two old. But, much to their chagrin (and much to the ease of our budget) we managed to provide three 'wonderful' vehicles from the previous decade with mileage to match; basic transportation. Alas, I was free! Three vehicles for the kids and one for my wife and myself!

Life was wonderful. Oh, sure, trying to fit our family fleet of four vehicles in the driveway or on the street was a challenge, as well as the inconvenience of doing the car shuffle to 'unbury' someone who had to leave the driveway (always the buried one who has to leave right away).. but it was worth it. But then one day the inevitable happened.. the parental vehicle broke down. This was not supposed to happen in my grand plan. I had a 'hot date' planned for that evening.. my wife and I were going to dinner and a movie. So I approached my oldest in some instinctive groveling manner, "Son, can I use your car this evening?"

I put on a face of empathy and sympathy as I listened to a tirade about how this was going to cramp his evening's social activities but in the end he dangled his keys on front of me and gave me the drive-carefully-and-make-sure-you-pay-me-for-the-gas-you-use speech, adding that I owed him big time for this 'favor'.

As I reached for the keys in his hand I found myself almost saying, "Thanks, dad!"

About The Author

Doug Burkland is degreed in the behavioral sciences and writes articles regarding family life, parenting, human sexuality, entrepreneurship, and current events. An aging baby boomer raised in the Mid-West and having liberal-conservative attitudes, Doug is an admitted 'survivor' of public education who thinks he has something to say that people might like to read; sometimes using a bit of healthy satire, mixed with friendly sarcasm, and at times tempered with thought provoking common sense. Along with being an entrepreneur (having had three businesses of his own), Doug has a broad perspective on balancing life and family.

http://www.dougburkland.com or email doug@dougburkland.com

In The News:

The current heatwave in the British Isles has revealed a host of long-hidden historical sites that have suddenly become visible through the parched earth.
Archaeologists in Ireland have uncovered a megalithic tomb containing two burial chambers, complete with elaborate carvings.
A team of scientists made an enormous discovery when they recently uncovered a "quadrillion" tons of diamonds,buried more than 100 miles below Earth's surface, according to a new study.
Doctor Richard Harris was thought to be the one who decided which boy was saved first, but new details have emerged.
Astronomers in Australia are eager for a special celestial alignment this week that could tell them more about one of the most intriguing candidates for hosting life beyond Earth.
Attention, anglers in Pennsylvania: A northern snakehead, also known as “frankenfish,” was found recently in Octoraro Creek in Little Britain Township.
As hurricanes continue to cause greater impact from factors such as climate change, NASA's new hurricane-tracking satellites could be up and running by as early 2019.
Scientists have discovered 12 previously unknown moons orbiting Jupiter, and one of them is a real oddball.
Once again, scientists have shown that Albert Einstein's theory of special relativity is right — this time, thanks to a particle detector buried deep beneath Antarctica.
Scientists searching for sea snakes never expected to stumble across this find.

Parenting: 6 Observations on Fatherhood

Just the other day my oldest son asked:"Daddy, am I... Read More

Dealing with Lying: The Dos and Donts

Jason Roberts listened to his son's explanation of the missing... Read More

Diet Sodas And How They Can Affect Kids

Many of us have grown up drinking caffeinated diet sodas... Read More

Helping Your Child Develop

Here are some things that you can do to help... Read More

Navigating in the New World: Parents and Teenagers Growing Together

One of the most prevalent myths of our modern culture... Read More

Bad Company

Here we will come to know who are the most... Read More

Five Ways To Build Super-Strong Relationships With Your Children

One of the questions I ask in parenting presentations is... Read More

Frequently Asked Questions About Reading To Your Child

Are you worried about your child's reading habits? Perhaps you... Read More

Delightful Defrazzlers

I will cherish this moment. I will not let it... Read More

Muscle Pain And Children Do Not Mix

I am in pain. I've been in pain all day.... Read More

Working Moms: Too Busy for Your Children?

17 Quick Ways to Strengthen the Bonds of LoveOn Mother's... Read More

5 Ways To Help Your Kids Do Math

Uh oh.Your kids arrive home with their school reports and... Read More

10 Reasons Why You Need to Ditch the Super Mom Syndrome

For any of you Moms out there that are doing... Read More

Ultimate Airplane Themed Games & Activities for your Childs Birthday Party

Are you looking for the Ultimate Airplane Themed Party Games... Read More

Use Encouragement Instead of Criticism to Help Children Improve

Criticism is punitiveOur children judge themselves on the opinions we... Read More

The Parent Teen Relationship: How Effective is Yours?

It was the homework that did it. Each night became... Read More

5 Ways To Tell If A Preschooler Is Living In Your House

1. You reheated the same cup of coffee three times... Read More

Life Lessons Learned in My Underwear

For several years now, I've told the following story as... Read More

New Baby ? Relax and Become a Yummy Mummy

Lets face it becoming a mum is a bit of... Read More

Playful Parenting - More than Just Fun and Games

Early childhood educators have called play "children's work". Many parents... Read More

Vehicle Safety - Following Simple Vehicle Safety Tips Can Reduce Auto Accidents and Injuries

Child Car Seat Safety:We know you love your children, but... Read More

What To Do With A 6 Year Old Smart Mouth Know It All

Just the other day, I was talking to some other... Read More

Backpacks and Bullies. Is Your Child Prepared?

As the flurry of Back to School activities subside, parents... Read More

The Secret To Keeping Kids Interested on Family Vacations

Vacations and trips are great family events, but how do... Read More

Children Cooperate When Appreciated

Do you want your child to cooperate with you more?Children... Read More

induction lighting versus led led flood light fixtures Pete's produce ..