That’s a picture of my son with the mascot of our local hockey team from earlier tonight.
The week before, we drove up to the dome of my old university and watched a football game.
Sometimes I think he tolerates it more than enjoys it, feeling that it’s more of an obligation of what sons are supposed to do with their fathers. I’d like to tell him that it is indeed worth the boredom to tag along with your old man to an obligatory father/son outing. I don’t remember too many of them with my own father, and I’d like to believe that they’re meaningful enough later, when you begin recalling events to use against your old man.
There will not be a point where my son starts a blog and writes “I don’t remember too many of them with my own father” when tallying all of the sporting events the two of them went through.
It’s the trip to them that’ll probably be forgotten, but I’m taking steps to paint an audio picture that will trigger something-maybe subconsciously-whenever he hears those songs later on.
Tonight on the way to the hockey game, a bit of Back In Black seemed appropriate. It was a dark night, with steady drizzle and the dropping temperature of Thanksgiving eve could potential make the overpasses a slick affair.
I won’t debate the nature of the subject matter-which is pretty much junior high entendres anyway-but the drive and stomp seemed appropriate. Sure enough, they played “Shoot To Thrill” over the p.a. at the game during a stop in the action.
It registered with him.
My job was done.
On that weekend of the football game, I told him that I was going to play a song that would blow his mind.
It was “Subterranean Homesick Blues.”
“Who is this guy, Doctor Seuss?” he asked.
I think Dylan would have smiled.
I went deeper-this time on to “Its Alright Ma, I’m Only Bleeding.”
It’s not like I expected him to understand everything that was being said, but my suspicions about the silence in the backseat were confirmed when I heard him laugh at the “Sometimes the President of the United States must have to stand naked” line.
“Did he just say ‘naked?’” he asked.
That’s all I can ask for. That he pay attention sometimes.
It’ll come back, someday.
It did for me.