Parents

 

 

Joe: Y’know, I don’t think that people really appreciate their parents until they get older. I mean, at least I can say that about myself. And I think it’s true of, y’know, here in America.

 

Kristin: Yeah, I was gonna say in this culture, anyway. Yeah I can totally agree with that.

 

Joe: Yeah, I, eh, y’know, looking back, I think I only really came to, y’know, see all the sacrifices my parents made, and appreciate those sacrifices, when I went away to college.

 

Kristin: Mm-hm. That’s probably when I started appreciating my parents, too.

 

Joe: Yeah, I mean, y’know, now looking back I can see that my dad… He was always trying to teach me things. And at the time I, I couldn’t even tell that it was going on. But, y’know, now I see there’s method to his madness, like…

 

Kristin: Like, what’s an example?

 

Joe: Alright, well, for example, like on Saturdays, y’know, what I liked to do was probably what any, y’know, little boy used to do. I liked to go out, play with my friends, y’know, play some baseball or some football or, y’know, just, just hang out with my friends.

 

Kristin: Right.

 

Joe: Well, my dad on the other hand, y’know, he was really strict. And, uh, he ran a tight ship. I’m tellin’ ya. I mean, I, I think there was this unspoken motto that he had which was my way or the highway.

 

Kristin: [laugh] I can see that.

 

Joe: So come Saturday morning, it was time to do some work, and…

 

Kristin: [laugh]

 

Joe: …so it was time to spoil the fun I wanted to have.

 

Kristin: Right.

 

Joe: So, he’d say something like, “Hey, y’know, uh, today we have to change the oil on the car, I’ll show you how to do it.”

 

Kristin: Oh boy.

 

Joe: I’d be thinkin’, yeah, I’d be thinkin’, oh that sounds like fun…y’know. Or like, uh, y’know, another time he’d say, “Okay, uh, y’know, we have to change the brakes today. And I think that, uh, I’ll show you how to do it this time. And you’ll… You can do it next time.” And I’m sittin’ there, I, I must be eleven years old, I’m thinkin’ to
myself, I’m not gonna remember how to do this. I’m not gonna retain any of it.

 

Kristin: Right.

 

Joe: But sure enough, he showed me how to do it. And, y’know, now looking back, y’know, I can see that, y’know, it was, uh, probably something that he wanted to make sure I knew how to do as I grew older…

 

Kristin: Sure.

 

Joe: …but I didn’t really pay attention, y’know. I couldn’t appreciate it at the time.

 

Kristin: Yeah, my, my dad, uh, taught me some things about the car, not as detailed as changing the brakes or changing the oil. But he taught me basics like just checking my fluids, like power steering fluid, um, brake fluid, the oil. At the time, y’know, I would dread him teaching me. I wouldn’t retain it. I would forget so he would constantly be teaching me. And it would just… I knew it would be this long-winded lecture. When I would be wanting just to get in the car and leave, go meet my friends.

 

Joe: Yeah, sure.

 

Kristin: But now I, I appreciate that he taught me those… how to, uh… check my fluids actually. It’s a useful thing to know.

 

Joe: Yeah, there, there were some things that my father would teach me, like, when I was younger, and I did appreciate it. And I mean like the one thing that stands out in my mind is learning how to cook. Y’know, my dad was really good about allowing us to be in the kitchen while he was cooking. ‘Coz my dad’s an amazing cook, and…

 

Kristin: Yeah, he is.

 

Joe: …y’know, when we were growing up… I remember like all my friends and, uh, my mom’s side of the family, it was only the women who cooked. But…

 

Kristin: Uh-huh.

 

Joe: …from my dad’s side of the family, the men totally cooked. I mean, I just said my dad was a great cook. He learned from his father, my grandfather, who was a great cook. My grandfather’s brother, my great-uncle…

 

Kristin: Mm-hm.

 

Joe: …he was a great cook. So it really wasn’t a gender specific trait in my family. And I think as a result, uh, we weren’t afraid to be in the kitchen. And my father allowed us to. So, uh, y’know… And my dad was always good about teaching me how to cook. I mean I remember this one time. . . I was a little kid. I must have been six years old. I wake up on a Sunday morning. And I go downstairs and I say, uh, “Hey Dad, can you make me French toast for breakfast?” And I remember him saying something like, “Okay, yeah, I’ll make it for ya. I’ll teach you how to make it and then the next time you make it for me.”

 

Kristin: [laugh] That’s great.

 

Joe: So I was thinkin’ this is great! I’m gonna be able to make French toast for myself whenever I want. And then, y’know, also I wanted to try and impress my dad, uh, y’know. So I wanted to make it for him, too.

 

Kristin: Uh-huh.

 

Joe: So, y’know, that was, y’know, that was something that was a bonding experience with my father and I as well.

 

  • culture: the way group of people think and act
  • totally: definitely; completely
  • looking back: to think of a time in the past
  • sacrifice(s): something(s) that causes you to be unable to do something else that you would like to do
  • couldn’t even tell: did not know
  • method to his madness: at the time you did not know why he did something but later you were able to understand
  • hang out: to casually pass time
  • strict: controlling
  • he ran a tight ship: he is strict or very controlling
  • I’m tellin’ ya: I am not joking; I am serious
  • motto: a word or group of words that is important to someone or something
  • my way or the highway: do as I say or leave
  • retain: to remember
  • sure enough: as expected
  • pay attention: listen to
  • basics: simple things
  • dread: to not want to do something
  • long-winded: speaking or writing that is very long
  • stands out in my mind: I remember it very well
  • growing up: getting older; also refers to the time when you were a child
  • gender specific trait: something done only by a male or only by a female
  • French toast: a breakfast food
  • bonding experience: something that makes people become closer

 

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