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Friday, February 22, 2008

Sweet 16

Today my son is 16. We are driving to the Secretary of State after school to officially get his driver’s license. Then, we will drive to pick up our Honda at the repair shop and I will pay them 600 dollars for the work they just did since my alternator froze solid in the Tundra (also known as my driveway) and snapped all the belts connected to it.

I am remembering what life was like at 16. I wonder how Connor will remember 2008. These are the things that shaped my world.

Tahni and I just started dating.

George Orwell’s famous novel—the title of which was the year I turned 16—didn’t actually seem too far from real. In school, we are taught about nuclear fallout and how to survive in case Russia invades. We would see the wall fall and Germany reunited five years later.

The Supreme Court broke up the Bell System because of Sherman Antitrust Act and the game Monopoly made a little more sense to me.

Reagan was re-elected. Bush as VP.

The median household income was just over 22k.

The Supreme Court ruled it was okay to tape shows at home on your VCR without breaking the law. This was good since The Cosby Show debuted when I was 16. This also gave me the freedom to collect boxes upon boxes of VHS tapes full of crap. Some are still in my basement. But, if you love TiVo, thank the Supreme Court for this decision.

Amadeus was the big movie.

Apple introduced the first Mac personal computer. IBM introduces PC DOS 3.0. The big releases of this year in personal computers kinda set the stage for the rest of the story.

Tahni and I went to quite a few concerts that summer including Steve Taylor (the Meltdown tour), Mark Heard, The 77's, Vector, Lifesavers, Undercover, Altar Boys, Phil Keaggy, and Leslie Phillips.

Stryper's "Yellow and Black Attack" was released and changed my life.

"The Unforgettable Fire" was released by U2 and changed my life again.

I started my first band . . . "Monopoly." (ha ha. Funny now that I look back at the first part of this blog). Our first concert was in a garage. We played two songs: an original of mine that sucked and "I'm Not" from Mike Knott and the LSU boys (then called Lifesavors).

"Thriller" won the Grammy. So did "Beat it." Oh, Michael Jackson caught on fire during a Pepsi commercial shoot too.

I subscribed to The Wittenburg Door.

I got my Baja Bug running. I built that VW from the ground up. Gas was about $1.20/gallon.

I heard the word "Aids" for the first time. So did most people.

I saw Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.

Why is Eddie Van Halen playing synth on "Jump?"

I bought an Ibanez Tube Screamer TS9. If it is good enough for The Edge . . .

Paul McCartney and Wings broke up.

The day after my birthday, "Footloose" takes the number one spot on the charts. Uhhh! I could not stand that soundtrack. What is music coming to?

Wait! Prince replaces Footloose with "Let's Go Crazy." All is well.

Reagan says they will put a teacher in space. My woodshop teacher is one of the finalists. He didn't make it and the whole school was sad for him. Good thing he didn't get to go up.

They put a baboon heart in "Baby Fae."

Marvin Gaye's dad shot and killed him. My dad was devastated.

Def Leppard drummer Rick Allen lost his arm.

The Cars' "Drive" is getting a lot of airplay and I am really disappointed. I love The Cars but this song sucks.

Happy birthday, son. Make good memories and stay away from the things you know in your heart might haunt you later on. A lot changes over time but God is always faithful and consistent. Love God.

I am proud of you. You make me a happy father. You are my best buddy. I love all the time we spend together.

Don't crash the car.


kim said...

Happy birthday to your son.

i do believe i turned 16 the same year as you...

Unknown said...

I had that took years to pay off. My girl is now 14. The car thing...only a bit way for me!

Anonymous said...

Congrats to you kid as well...

Wow... Thanks for the stroll down memory lane... I'm also amazed as i'm only 1 year younger and have had an entirely different life!

Since then: No wife, no kids...Lived in 6 cities, 3 coutries....Had a bunch of jobs....Went to college, grad school, law school....Live in Manhattan currently... Cant even IMAGINE having a 16 year old kid!! Friends are JUST now having kids...

Crazy.... Did I take the path less traveled, or you? Interesting, when I was 16, I never would have guessed my life would be like this...