Thursday, March 11, 2010

Ghetto Van Moves Down the Road

"What?! You're selling the red van?!"

I'd heard this from more than one wrestler on the day that we put the red ghetto beast up for sale.

And I suppose when a vehicle is 20 years old and has gone on as many wrestling trips as this one has, its bound to have garnered some attachments.

"No, you can't sell it." (says a face in denial).

One of our boys thought we should bury it half way into the ground in the front yard, along with other Astro vans that bite the dust in the herd. The same boy thought it might be a 'viable' option to let her go out with a bang at the demolition derby.

As one of the bill-paying individuals in the household I thought we should place an ad that read something like:
Astro conversion van for sale, mature (250,000 miles) and actually dependable with many special features: child proof sliding door (only opens from outside), theft proof passenger door (only opens from inside), fold down bench seat (allows one older child to sleep diagonally), variable speed automatic window controls (sometimes they take several minutes to get back up), optional power locks (sometimes chooses not to lock some doors), theft resistant cargo doors (there's a nail-breaking trick to opening the dented rear door that chooses not to lock).....and there's more! Call 419-GHETTO-VAN

So many great ideas. None of them happened because the treasure sold in one day's time. Going, going, gone!

Next morning, the 13 year old Astro van wouldn't start.

Photo compliments of

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Bittersweet and Bobbing

A flurry of emotions flooded me, none of them good.
Oozing over with anger and sadness at the State Wrestling Tournament in Columbus last weekend, I was fit to be tied, or smacked, or something.
My senior son, Wes, had lost his second match due to a foot injury in the first round. He was predicted to take 2nd and now his high school career was done. This was the first in nine years of four high school wrestling sons, that two of them qualified for State the same year. It held such promise!
I threw my stuff in the trunk (that required 5 slams to shut) and sat in the car for a long time trying to cool down before I headed back to the hotel in Nascar fashion. Doing quite well, I might add...with the Nascar part....I was northbound on 315 when I noticed something bobbing in my rear view mirror. You guessed it, the trunk lid. I couldn't safely pull over and nothing was in danger of falling out unless there was a half pipe around the corner. So I just kept clipping along with traffic while I pretended not to notice people staring and pointing. I just hoped my chocolate supply didn't bobble loose.
I grin now, but boy was I angry. At God. Yep, I usually go straight to the top for this stuff. I know He could have blessed Wes, but He didn't. Not in this way anyway. It made me seriously angry.
Dexter (sophomore) was 17 seconds away from being done in the tournament himself, and down by 3 points. I was starting to feel the tears of defeat when Dexter reversed the kid (2 points) and locked in his crazy wrenching tilt where he literally leverages his entire body on the kid until he turns him to his back - and it worked! He scored two more points in the last two seconds to win the match! This was a near heart attack I tell you. I bawled. I had friends and family crying. I had people who didn't even know me crying. It was an amazing victory for Dexter and he went on to place 7th in the state.
A bittersweet weekend to be sure.
Today a friend hit a point home for me, and I needed it. She said, (my paraphrase) "Shelley, sports teach life lessons, and the rewards they get later in life applying those lessons are the ones that matter."
I knew this, I really did. I wrote something like this in my wrestling book. The people they become, the commitment and work ethic they learn, this is what matters. I know. But somehow today when she said it, it was like I finally hit the ball that was pitched to me, and I smacked it out of the park.
OK God, I get it. I still don't really like it and I'll probably need reminded again, but I think I get it.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Cars Falling Like Dominoes Solution

The college duo -Mitch & Cody, were right on time getting out the door to drive to class, no time to air up the flat tire they found on Cody's car. So, they marched over to Mitch's car while Mitch said something like, "Ya Turd, we've taken my car for the last four days!"

But his car's battery was dead, so he had to get mouthy about something else now.
By the time I saw them, heard them actually, they were pulling out of the driveway in the 1990 Ghetto-Astro conversion van. Their mission: to give new meaning on campus to the word 'class'.

I was supposed to use Trevor's car to get to a work meeting because the van was in the shop. Trevor noticed a low tire on his car too and went out to work it. He came in too quickly asking how to use the battery charger. His car was dead too.

Yes, we were 0-3 on the lot.

So, Dave had to stop home for his lunch to jump start and charge up vehicles, while on his way to exchange the van for the car he was driving that needed other repairs.

Our solution possibilities?
1) buy the car pictured here (a girl's gotta dream)
2)hitch-hike (this is not safe)
3)fire up the mini bike & strap on the helmet (safer)
4) play musical cars (this is our personal favorite and wins every time).

Today all the dominoes are standing. It's a good day.