Off the Hook

Chris is not quite as expressive as Melissa, and we have slowly realized that Everett often reacts more to the emotional content of Chris’ communication than the semantic meaning. One recent example was about a week ago when Melissa and Chris were preparing to work all night on Sunday to prepare our taxes. A little while before dinner we got a phone call from our accountant saying that he had the flu and couldn’t meet with us the next morning. Chris threw his arms up in a victory sign and exclaimed “We are off the hook baby!!!” Everett thought this was hilarious and has been repeating it ever since then.

Yesterday (Saturday) was our first PAC car race at Y-tribe. To learn about this type of racing we tried using Google but didn’t really find anything, at least for model cars. This type of racing is most similar to pinewood derby, which has a long history with the Boy Scouts and which also seems very serious (to get an idea how serious this has become, try searching for pinewood derby in ebay). In contrast, PAC car racing appears to be the antithesis: the track is made of something similar to corrugated metal roofing material held up by scrap lumber; the release mechanism is a bunch of paint stirrers glued to a piece of wood that spins on a couple of drywall screws; the timing system for the race involved a dad who kneels over the finish line to see which car crossed first. In short, it’s just the kind of old-school experience we were hoping for. Everett wanted to make a car that resembled a cat. However, due to very limited time and motivation we didn’t entirely succeed. We went to Dan’s house two night before the race and cut a nose on the car, then Everett painted it, and then we glued eyes to the top. On the morning of the race Chris and Everett cleaned up the wheels and the axles and mounted them on the car.
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We didn’t win the race but it was a lot of fun. This is one of the first times that Everett became aware that trophies are given to the winners, and he really wants a trophy, so this might be good motivation for next year. A few photos of the race are in this gallery.

After the race we went to Culver’s for custard. On the way home Everett asked “Is it hard to be a parent?”
Chris replied “Sometimes, but it’s also a lot of fun.”
“Why is it hard? What’s fun about it?”
So Chris explained to Everett that parents have to make decisions that they think are best for their children, and this isn’t always easy. Also, discipline isn’t really fun for anybody but it is important and necessary. Next we talked about the fun things: spending time together, going on adventures, performing experiments, and of course roughhousing. Today Everett commented “Daddy, every time we are at Y-Tribe we are off the hook. Every other time we are on the hook.” Not exactly sure what it means to him to be off the hook, but he seems to love Y-Tribe so we think it’s a good thing.

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