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i once saw where a guy was working to recollect one moment from each year of his life to see if anything could be discovered by the exercise. not having many original ideas myself i figured i would try it myself. and as per usual i figured what's the point of doing it if i don't share it to the world. so feel free to step into various points in my life, for what it's worth.
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1981
virtually every vacation my family took involved visiting relatives back east. the drive from colorado to pennsylvania was arduous. my mom was a frenetic preparer, rushing from room to room with a glean of sweat on her face. my father was simply an adventurer, glad to again be tanning an arm out an open car window. one time my father bought a used car on the way home from work the day we were to leave. my mom freaked; 'i already have THIS car packed!!! we are NOT driving across the country in a car you just bought thirty minutes ago!' my father was unmoved. in his defense, it was a magic automobile; a beautifully preserved, 68 chrysler imperial, white with red leather interior and a funky metal eye on the center of the dashboard that would automatically turn the brights on and off at nighttime as other cars passed.

i was, as with most things, quite indifferent about the last minute change, asking them to simply point me to the car we'd be using. once directed, i nestled into the spacious back seat of this great, finned automobile. in the middle of backing down the driveway, my father stopped, put the car in park, said he forgot something and jogged into the house.

this was my chance to study all of the componentry on my door's console, because in my father's presence, such frivolous use a car's luxuries would not be tolerated. i played with the windows, punched the lighter, turned the reading light on and off, flipped the ashtray lid up and down a few times and peered into the book sleeve on the back of the driver's seat. the car was very well preserved. even i could call it handsome.

while my tactile adventure continued i heard a pop. i looked to the door curious of the source. my eyes found the lighter. i pulled it from its sleeve and turned its bottom side towards me. the swirling metal coil inside the cylindrical chamber was totally pristine, never used. i thought it odd a lighter this mature had never met the business end of a smoke. it additionally struck me that it didn't burn red with heat. how unfortunate that a car this immaculate be saddled with a bum lighter. intrigued by the dull metal coil i pressed my finger to it. the wisp of smoke and hiss of skin preceded my agonizing call. my mother spun in her seat to find her only child thrashing about the back of the car with a lighter connected to his right index finger.

sadly, when my father sold that automobile many years later he could not add 'driver side rear lighter, never used' to it's amenities because an oval graft of his son's finger skin was forever embossed on its dull metal rings.



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