Friday, February 6, 2015

Dented Fender? WHAT Dented Fender?

It was late at night. I had closed and cleaned the local pizza shop I worked at during my Junior year of high school and was beginning my drive home when something caught my eye out the driver's side window of the Plymouth Fury 3 I had inherited when my parents bought a new car.

Being a decidedly inexperienced driver, when I turned my head left to see what the something was, I overcompensated my steering and veered right...resulting in a glancing blow to the rear left quarter-panel of a car parked along the residential street I was on.


I was so freaked out. I carefully drove the five miles to our family homestead on a little 40-acre plot of farmland, parked in our gravel driveway and quietly slipped into the house without even looking at what I imagined to be irreparable damage to the Plymouth.

It was a few days later, as I was getting ready to go to school or work or guilt-denial sessions, that my dad walked in front of the car on his way to the barn, saw the front-right fender, and loudly asked, "What happened here?!?"

Here it was...time to confront the consequences of my carelessness and the reality of my lawlessness.

I cleared my throat.

"What happened where?" I innocently asked.

Yeah, that's right, I totally went into Oscar-worthy territory and somehow made my father believe that I had no idea there was a two-foot dent in my right-front fender. " must have hit me when I was parked in town or something."

And that was it. I never suffered any punishment or restrictions because of that. It was never brought up again, nor held over my head as a reason for me to "be careful, young man."

Then one evening, while driving to Wednesday night church service, the whole thing came to mind and I found myself confessing the incident to my mother...who I was taking to church...with Beloved and our four children.

Nineteen years...yeah, that's about the right amount of time to let pass before owning up to something like that.

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