Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Way It Is: Lessons from YouTube

With my kid brother preparing for his first year of college, I'm convinced my parents are already suffering the effects of ENS. Empty Nest Syndrome.

"What's your schedule look like for Father's Day," my mother asked during one of our daily phone conversations.

I had plans to get some work done in the office and a few things around the house, but things quickly changed.

"Well, your dad and I bought a boat and plan to take it out for the first time on Sunday," Mom pronounced.

A boat? What? They'd gone 25 years with my brother and I begging them to get a boat. We move out and poof, they buy a boat.

I quickly cleared my calendar of any activities for Sunday afternoon and pulled my swimsuit from the jaws of The Laundry Monster.

"I can't wait for you to see it," Mom chirped on one of our next phone conversations. "I learned that it needed deoxidized, and you should see it now."

Realizing that my parents knew next to nothing about boat ownership prior to buying their first boat, I began to fear for my safety on said Father's Day adventure.

"Your dad has been a nervous wreck, so he's doing a ton of research online and reading magazines and books," she said, trying to be reassuring.

When the big day finally arrived, Dad had managed to launch the boat with little help from the kid brother, who left his cell phone on the dock causing a minor catastrophe.

As my male counterpart and I neared the lake we were greeted with the site of my absentminded sibling skidding across the water as his tube wavered behind the boat.

Guess Dad got his revenge.

We boarded the boat for hours of water fun before deciding to head home.

"Who's gonna steer the boat while I back the trailer down," Dad asked?

Steer the boat? What did he mean steer the boat?

Mom reminded him that in his moment of nervousness, he had failed to allow any of us to drive the boat.

Luckily, my male counterpart had spent an entire summer driving boats a few years back and quickly volunteered.

Tightening the straps of my life jacket, I bravely asked, "Does Dad know what he's doing with the trailer?"
Mom's reply?

"Sure, he's watched a ton of YouTube videos."

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