Make your mistakes, take your chances, look silly, but keep on going. Don’t freeze up. ~Thomas Wolfe
Kyle always surprises me, especially with what he knows. This time it’s what he didn’t that took me completely off guard.
Okay, I’ll set the stage. Sunday night, I picked Kyle up from his youth group meeting and we proceeded to drive through Latrobe. It was later, probably about 8:00 pm or so and definitely dark. Why is this pertinent? It is! As we drove along, I barely noticed an older gentleman, who practically jumped into the street sticking his thumb in the air. His white or silver hair juxtaposed against his entirely black attire scared me. I know smart right, head-to-toe in solid black, lurking in the shadows of the night, while practically playing chicken with moving vehicles. I swerved into the left lane to miss him, before I stopped at our red light about ten yards away. Yeah, I checked to make sure our doors were locked. Check!
During this ordeal, Kyle was jarred a little from my fancy footwork behind the wheel, as well as me saying something like, “Whoa, buddy!” and “What the heck ?” It really happened so fast. While waiting for the light to turn green, I kind of reiterated the scene. That’s when I found myself baffled and yet humored.
I made a comment about the hitchhiker and Kyle asked, “What’s a hitchhiker?” What? Yep, I’m totally serious! He truly didn’t know what a hitchhiker was. Then the conversation went something like this.
Me: “He wants a ride somewhere, that’s why he’s hitchhiking or trying to, I almost hit him.”
Kyle: “How do you know he was trying to hitchhike?”
Me: Slightly sarcastic, “Because his thumb was in the air.”
Kyle: “Does that mean he needs a ride?”
Me: “Well, yeah. You know, you’ve seen people walk along highways with their thumb sticking in the air, basically screaming, “Pick me up”, they’re hitchhiking.”
Kyle: “I’ve never seen that before!”
Me: “Really? Well, that’s what he was doing. Although, they’re usually not that aggressive. He practically jumped up on the hood of my car.”
Let the silliness begin! There’s always one moment with us that sends us over the edge to the land-of-no-return humor. That was it. Kyle looked at me with wide eyes, and a huge ornery grin. So the ridiculous story unfolds!
Yes, we started laughing. I’ll take the blame for initiating this one when I said, “What would you do if he jumped on the hood of the car and held on?” Kyle and I busted out laughing. Then, I started to make noises like a car while I faked me driving erratically from side to side, to shake the imaginary hitchhiker from the hood of my car. Instantly, Kyle joined in adding to the sound effects and mimicking my motions. He said, “Can you image Aunt Heather? That would be so funny!”
Now, I’m taking it a step farther by adding, “Want me to pull over and have him ride in your lap? What would you do?” I was trying to get a rise out of Kyle, however he turned the tables on me with his wit.
It took Kyle merely a moment to concoct his own scenario, “No Aunt Heather, we’d put him in the backseat.” Laughing trying to properly express his thoughts to me, he adds, “With all three dogs! And I’m in the front seat.” Yeah, that made uncontrollable roars of laughter erupt straight from my gut. Kyle really painted the picture when he described the scene. “Can you imagine? Our boys would be walking all over him and he wouldn’t have any room to sit.” Kyle’s now really humoring himself, as well as me. He even added my cat, Storm, a.k.a. Lady Fluffington, to the story.
Playing off of Kyle’s new direction, I declare, “Scooby would be in his face growling and the guy would be too afraid to move.” I motioned with my hand toward my face, where Scooby’s face would be in relation to our fake hitchhiker. “Avery would just sit there and drool all over him, and Seven would pay no attention and tramp him down as he pranced back and forth on the seat.” That’s our dogs, exactly! Kyle found this story hilarious. He buckled over laughing. Actually, we both did.
Now, the crème de la crème, I blurted out, “No! We pull over, with you sitting in the front seat, and all three dogs in the back. I open the hatch and tell him that’s his seat.” We died! “He might say, “No thanks, I’ll wait for the next ride.” I love that moment of pure hilarity, whereas you can’t event catch your breath. In fact, not a sound could be heard. You know it’s gut stretching!
Yes, all this excitement was going on while I was driving, but at least I got Kyle off of his video games to engage with me, even if it was imaginary. We re-played that entire situation for the duration of the ride, changing things here and there and laughing at each new discovery.
I did explain that hitchhiking was more commonplace in his Gigi’s day. I explained it to him, as I was told, especially with war veterans who came home and didn’t have a vehicle, so they hitchhiked. I continued to explain that back in that day, most families only had one car, and sometimes not even that, and sometimes they needed a ride. I also told him, since the olden days, it’s became less acceptable and now dangerous. “So don’t ever pick up a hitchhiker or hitchhike yourself!” Even though he didn’t appear to be listening, I know he was.
I’ve said it before, Kyle is the coolest! I love being around him and under his thirteen-year old attitude, and general sluggishness brought on by poor eating and mind sucking video games, he has a strong personality and is really very funny. His sense of humor still reminds me of his Aunt Nikki, very Saturday Night Live “esk”. Nothing wrong with that!
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