Bartowsky came home from college on Friday. He is off for the summer. His siblings were happy to see him. His mother was happy to see him. I was happy to see him. I am not so sure about the dog. We suspect the dog is partially blind, as he foolishly barks at shadows and shoes and even Bartowsky.
Buddy Bartowsky spent a few moments talking with me about the routine for the next five weeks or so. We talked about his new summer-boss; some hard case that goes by the name, "Dad." And how his work will be a mix of hard labor and intellectual pursuit. Which is code for labor on one hand and research on the other. Both of which tie into my businesses -a dicey mix of old and new ranging from real estate franchise to house renovation to a new idea that is brewing and simmering away on the back burner.
We talked about his business-an online auto niche store that sells Coilovers and wheels to guys and gals who like to tune their cars and drift and generally pump money into depreciating assets. I get it. I buy motorcycles for similar reasons. He doesn't get it. He drives a Scion XB that he has smashed and wrecked on more than one occasion. It is pretty much stock. He calls it, "The Toaster." It is completely utilitarian and scarred for life due to it's association with Don, or Bartowsky, as I call him. The guy is a capitalist dressed in liberal Film-studies clothing. I think that some day this realization will shock him.
And we talked about the route.
We are now on version five, or as I like to think of it, cinco de route. We made a few adjustments based on his requests. We will make a few more as we get closer to the gig. As we talked, I could see the spark in his eye. He reminded me of my dad talking about a trip to destinations unknown.
"Dan," he would say in his sometimes booming voice, "let's drive to Banff (from North Dakota) for Christmas. Forget the tree and the fruitcake. Open the gifts now. What do you think?" His eyes twinkling as his socks were pulled up with care.
If I was a smarter and a little older elf at the time, I might have said, "Sure, Pops! We're going to the Canadian Rockies in your two-wheel drive Pontiac coupe. In the middle of a sub-zero winter. What could possibly go wrong?" But instead I eagerly participated knowing full well that an adventure without a hint of danger is just not worth the effort.
Bartowsky had that same shine as we debated New Mexico over Colorado. That twinkle. That spark that the first Don, my dad, had when gearing up for a trip. And all this even though my beloved son told the hot-lit babe (my wife), "Dad will never let me drive the Avalon. It is just too nice." The Avalon is the used car we purchased for the trip. He's wrong. Drive it, Bartowsky. Drive the piss out of it. Just don't turn it into a copycat image of The Toaster.