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Folks Of Interest Kind of personal, but car related

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Roothawg, Sep 9, 2018.

  1. Rickybop
    Joined: May 23, 2008
    Posts: 6,438

    from Michigan

    Have to add...
    I suggest that we need to also be grateful for what we've had.
    When I was so out-of-shape over losing my wife, many expressed sympathy for my loss and then envy in the same breath...because they hadn't been as lucky to have had so many years together with a good woman. That sentiment helps to sustain me these days.
    Root, you're one of the lucky few who share a common interest and have a special bond with your dad...forever. And nothing can take that away.
  2. BoilermakerDave
    Joined: Mar 3, 2016
    Posts: 266

    from Las Vegas

    When I’m pushing his age, I sure hope my sons stay close to me. Lord knows I have nobody else. He’s a lucky man and so are you.
  3. quickchangeV8
    Joined: Dec 7, 2010
    Posts: 375


    You know I will never forget Mrs. Storey. She was probably in her early 80's and still drove her car around town. She drove a big boat of a car, maybe a 20 year old or more Oldsmobile or Buick, something of that nature, I just don't remember anymore what it was. I live in a small town of about 2000 population with one main street, no stop lights, everyone just drives straight through town. In a small town everyone knows everyone else. When Mrs. Storey was out driving around town either going to church functions, going to the post office or going grocery shopping, it was definitely a real adventure when she was on the road. Everyone in town knew she was a really bad driver and if you happened to be following her, everyone would give her lots of room and stayed well back, as you never knew what to expect. Her decision making was irrational as she would sometimes signal a turn and then go the opposite way, or you would see the brake lights come on all of a sudden and she would come to a complete stop right on main street by jamming on the brakes, or she would all of a sudden decide she was going the wrong way and turn around right on main street with no regard to oncoming traffic or anyone following her. The turn around could take several minutes with the car lurching going back and forth to get turned around. She never hit anything or anyone but I remember she had a whole lot of near misses.Mrs. Storey must have had a lot of hair loss as she always wore a wig out in public and the wig was always resting on her glasses. Maybe she had trouble seeing, I really don't know. I remember one day I was following her through town. I was well back as I knew to expect the unexpected when you were following Mrs. Storey. There were several cars following me and a big transport truck followed by several cars coming in the opposite direction. All of a sudden Mrs. Storey decides that she is going the wrong way and with no warning at all, sharply veers off the main street and ends up on the sidewalk narrowly missing two pedestrians. The transport truck comes to a very abbreviated stop and everyone has to wait for several minutes as Mrs. Storey proceeds to go back and forth, car lurching with the hard braking and too much gas pedal. She finally completes the turn around and is off in the other direction. The transport truck driver and I make eye contact as we both start moving again, and we both shrug our shoulders, we both have great big smiles on our faces, and give each other a big wave as we pass by each other.There are days I don't remember at all, or even months and years for that matter, but I fondly remember the brief greeting between the truck driver an myself that day. The event we both witnessed was both serious and at the same time you had to laugh at what just happened. Maybe it's just a guy thing, I really don;t know.
    This is an example of something that carried on for far too long. Because of age, Mrs. Storey had become a dangerous driver and shouldn't been allowed to drive because of her advanced age. Nothing bad ever happened but easily could have. I would suggest that you sit down with your dad, and see what the next move should be. I think you both can sort things out and reach an honest decision.
    vintage56, Chavezk21, brad2v and 4 others like this.
  4. While it's painful to watch a loved one lose abilities (particularly if it's something they love), be glad he's making the decision... before something bad happens. I remember the travails I had with my mother...

    Diagnosed with Parkinson's, her doctor suspended her license as the doctor felt it wasn't well-enough controlled (long story...). So she calls me and tells me to come get the car, it's too much of a temptation. I do...

    With treatment, she improves after some time so the doctor lifts the suspension. She wants the car back. Both myself and my sister had mixed feelings about this as my mother always had a heavy right foot, but I went ahead and returned a car; not the one she had been driving, but a very nice '56 Ford sedan I owned. Not as fast as her car, and made out of real steel. She was thrilled, she'd owned one years earlier and really liked it. Six months or so later, I get another call; come get the car. Did the doctor suspend your license again? I ask. No, it's just time she says...

    Many months later, my sister tells me she let slip why she really quit. Seems she went to a doctor appointment, the car got away from her in the parking garage.... she hit multiple parked cars... and then left in a panic. I figure at least four cars, from the different colors of paint I found on the two corners of the front bumper. Didn't find any other damage at all.... LOL. I felt bad for whoever she hit, but so much time had passed and she couldn't remember exactly when it happened even after I got her to admit to it, so I saw no point in pursuing it further.
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2018
  5. Sorry to hear, and I can certainly relate in a number of ways, as my dad is almost 80, and mum is way past that.
    Over the last 5 years I've been quite aware, and concerned, with a lot of things that have always been such a notable part of their lives becoming a struggle, and forcing change. Having seen them fight change (and the emotional toll that brought), as well as accept it, and also embrace (in some areas), I've come to the conclusion at this point that where possible, embracing change is a difficult, but can bring with it a lot of great positives, for both them, and those around them.
    With regards to cars, and being such a heavily focused element, in my case I've seen my father surrender a number of things, and forced to accept that they can no longer do as they have always done, and I've ended up taking the reigns of sorts, which, whilst difficult to get ones head around at the time, I think it's been good for him, in the sense of both relief, but also to embrace the view from a different seat and perspective. I have seen him struggle, and try to come to terms with change (as he's always been a very strong willed and independent person), but have also seen him actually come to embrace and enjoy (at times) parts of the deal, and as their son, am humbled to be able to allow them the opportunity to take the 'moment', that they never have previously, nor expect to last that long in the scheme of things.
    I don't expect things to get any easier, but if nothing else, can I encourage you to hang in there, and offer support with your father (and mum), and whilst it won't be the same, it will offer a new opportunity for you all, if it's not allowed to consume you.

    As a tangent, I'm a father of two young girls, and was reminded the other day, that I was also a husband, a brother, an uncle, and a son. There will be a day that I'm a grandfather, and find myself challenged with things and perspectives that I've never had to really consider previously, to which, I don't proclaim to have all the answers, but am willing to accept, that despite the battles and area's of change in one's life, I just need to face them one day at a time.

    Sing out if you ever want to chat, even if we're a world apart, still not that far away.


    Chavezk21, brad2v, lumpy 63 and 4 others like this.
  6. tiredford
    Joined: Apr 6, 2009
    Posts: 488

    from Mo.

    Try and find comfort that he knows when its time to quit driving. My dad had to have a judge stop him from driving. Put him on one year probation.
    Chavezk21 and Roothawg like this.
  7. krusty40
    Joined: Jan 10, 2006
    Posts: 828


    This is the key statement. At 73, I fear the day when that occurs with my driving, and hope I'm man enough to accept that I might be endangering others if I continue to drive (at least on public roads). If one gets confused or has delayed reactions in driving situations, you're not that different than a drunk driver in your relationship to public safety. It sounds like your father is a wise man; respect his wishes.

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  8. poco
    Joined: Feb 9, 2009
    Posts: 365

    from oklahoma

    [ am 83 and wonder how longer I will be able to drive safely.
    j hansen and Roothawg like this.
  9. m.kozlowski
    Joined: Nov 2, 2011
    Posts: 139


    I had my dad told me once that he is putting his drivers license in the drawer, never to be used again. Accept that, he knows better when to quit driving.
    After that i was blessed with a few years more with him, until cancer took him. The difference was that he wasn't wrenching on our projects and i was handing tools - that was I doing the wrenching and he was handing tools. Seemed that he enjoyed that ever more, watching me doing stuff he never had courage to try to do. I think i understand that now, having my own children growing so fast.
    Just agree with what is inevitable and live fully through what is left for You both to live. It could still be many fun years, just without your dad driving.
  10. jetnow1
    Joined: Jan 30, 2008
    Posts: 1,529

    from CT
    1. A-D Truckers

    My 90 year old aunt was a terrible driver, did not get a license until she was in her 40's, after 5 tries.
    She was the type who never had an accident but you wonder how many she caused. Florida renewed her license for 6 years without even a vision check. Thank God my mother is giving up her car on her own.
  11. Chavezk21, j hansen and Roothawg like this.
  12. stubbsrodandcustom
    Joined: Dec 28, 2010
    Posts: 1,217

    from Spring tx

    your pops is still around man, enjoy the time with him, I think everyone touched on the right part, He knows his issues are effecting him, he wants to make sure he does things right in his mind right now, hence trying to give you the 36... Keep the man working and enthusiastic and he shall be fine man. Don't let him wallow in his own grief or get to that point ever. He has had many years behind the wheel, he realizes that he has lost the edge and was man enough to admit it by letting your mom drive etc. It takes one hell of a man to admit that.. Shows tons about his character and he is mentally sharp enough to make the change. Yeah it sucks to watch them decline, but make the best out of the moments you got, take him more places, work on more stuff together. At least you can work with your dad and still have the time together.
  13. BuckeyeBuicks
    Joined: Jan 4, 2010
    Posts: 2,019

    from ohio

    My only living uncle will be 92 next month, he is/was a die hard Pontiac man almost all his life. We finally talked him into giving up driving when he came home one time and his passenger side mirror on his Grand Prix was knocked off and he didn't know why. He had just passed his drivers license renewal test a month before, he said they give him a little break because he didn't see too well! At almost 67 it scares the shit out of me to know my time is coming before I know it, I already notice I can't shift as fast as I used to and I can't back a trailer nearly as good as I used to. Not to mention other things I don't do as often as I used to either;)

    My Dad was never into cars other than being a Buick guy to the end(we lost him in 1988) but he always maintained our family cars and he taught me a lot when I was a kid. He got a kick out of his boys messing with hot rods and old cars in general.

    Just make the most of having your dad around and be thankful he can still enjoy the hobby with you. He must be a pretty savvy guy to know his limits. Take that 36 and enjoy it, take him for a ride and burn a little rubber once in a while to keep his juices flowing:D
    Chavezk21, brad2v, lumpy 63 and 3 others like this.
  14. The Shift Wizard
    Joined: Jan 10, 2017
    Posts: 1,954

    The Shift Wizard

    I don't see your dad wishing to give you the '36 as a bad sign. He has decided to retire from driving but he just doesn't feel right that the rod should be off the road, too. Naturally, you're the heir of the car so your dad just intends to pass your "inheritance" over to you a little early so the '36 will stay in the family and continue as before. To me, that's not some sort of personality change or closing a chapter on a major part of his life. He's not actually unloading or selling to strangers because the '36 is not really going anywhere that he will never have access to it.

    Some folks have never lived life to the degree that your dad has, doing what he loves with hot rods, racing, and building 'em the way he has. Your being so active in the car lifestyle is helping him to draw some contentment and be able to trust that things will go on for him, for you and for any of the "things" that mean anything. Let him see how you respect his decisions and his "estate" and make the rest of his years the best they can be.
  15. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 19,687


    Thanks fellas. It has just been weighing heavy on my heart this weekend and I needed to get it out and vent.
    HunterYJ, Chavezk21, brad2v and 4 others like this.
  16. My Dad was killed in Viet Nam in 1964 so I never really got to know him. My grandfather raised me and when he quit driving he was too sick to anyway. My only real experience here would be my mother, finally quit at 86 when she scared herself. Statute of limitations has since expired so. She got on the Interstate going East in the West bound lane. Instead of backing down the ramp or turning around she proceeded about six miles to the next exit on the fast lane shoulder. Caused an accident, didn't know it till later so she didn't stop, no serious bodily injuries just vehicle damage, lucky. She called me to "come get the car" told me what happened when my wife and I got there. She was a frail scared little old lady that had done no harm so not a word was ever said about the "incident" to anyone. So to anyone going through this turmoil just abide by their wishes unless you know they can no longer drive safely. You just may save their life and your own families too. That would be a tragedy that I would not want to cope with. As it is now, I sleep well at night and intend to keep things that way.
  17. treb11
    Joined: Jan 21, 2006
    Posts: 3,452


    THIS. It's not about the driving, it's about being with your family.

    chryslerfan55, raven and Roothawg like this.
    Joined: Dec 14, 2009
    Posts: 2,363


    I stated it in the post about “ dads smarter then me”
    My dad could move mountains up untill a few years ago, he’s in his 70’s and getting old..... slowing down, not doing much like he used to.... even giving up his garden !!! ( even working 16 hour days he always had time for this!!)

    Anyways I spend as much time with him as possible. About a year ago I fell off a step ladder at work and brushed my leg and just was sore a few days, no big deal.

    Talking to my dad after it happened, he looked at me smiled and just laughed said “ son look at what’s left of me!!! I’m scared getting hit with a fucking snow ball would be enough to do me in now-a-days!!!””

    Getting old is part of life, growing up is optional.

    Keep your dad involved , take his car and take him out in it.
    Better he makes the decision then you having to make it for him.
  19. Its a dilemma but it is backward to most of us. He decided on his own that it was time to stop driving. My granddad did that the year that I was born. Most of the time you have to fight 'em to get the keys. My granddaughter did the talk with my mom. I guess she decided that mom was too scary to ride with and just confronted her with it.

    One thing that I have learned in my life is to get happy working on cars. For me it is more of a money issue that a driving issue. If I cannot work on a car of my own or drive a car of my own because the cash isn't there I work on someone else's. I have never taken the time to get really acquainted with your dad, that's on me and I should have. But maybe building with his son or friends will keep him busy enough.
  20. joel
    Joined: Oct 10, 2009
    Posts: 1,646


    You're right , it is too early and it won't end well, for you especially. Allow Dad to control his life as much as he can, as long as he can. He is fulfilling his responsibilities to his family as he always has done. Help him as much as you can and as much as he wants.
  21. Roothawg
    Joined: Mar 14, 2001
    Posts: 19,687


    Just an update. Mom and Dad took the 36 on the Hot Rod Hundred this past weekend. Dad drove it on the way down and mom drove when dad started feeling anxious. It turns out that he is having problems feeling his feet, when this starts happening, he stops and gets out. Mom drives after that point. I am suspecting neuropathy (sp?). Trying to get him to see a specialist. He's pretty stubborn.
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  22. pitman
    Joined: May 14, 2006
    Posts: 4,918


    A very helpful thread, thanks Root.
    Roothawg likes this.
  23. AHotRod
    Joined: Jul 27, 2001
    Posts: 10,510


    So glad to here that he drove the 36 and that a symptom my have been revealed.

    Now take him out and do some hairy burnouts together!

    God loves us all.
    chryslerfan55 and Roothawg like this.
  24. That's a great idea.
    Roothawg likes this.
  25. Has he been checked for diabetes? It can lead to diminished circulation and eventual loss of his legs. My wife's dad went through the amputations along with kidney failure and heart issues before his death.
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  26. Boneyard51
    Joined: Dec 10, 2017
    Posts: 4,008


    Root, my dad was the mans man, boss of the ranch, his truck was his life. I always worried about
    when the time came, what would we do. About 85 he, on his own, started letting mom drive on the streets. Said he couldn’t see good enough anymore to drive. Suprised us! He still drove on the ranch till into his 90s. Mom still drives to church, in her new Lincoln, at 95. But it’s not her time yet.

    A lot of good advise here, Root.

    Respect his decision, when he makes it, but keep him interested in cars by spending all the time you can with him. Working, talking, riding in cars.

    That time will come for all of us.

    Glad he went to the Hot Rod one Hundred.

    My Dad has been gone six years now, miss him everyday. Like you and your Dad, we were close.

  27. Chavezk21
    Joined: Jan 3, 2013
    Posts: 612


    Root, My pop's Died at 68 from complications of early onset Alzheimer's. When he got to the point where we thought that maybe he should stop driving, he had already decided on his own that it would be best if mom drove, and gave up his license. The thing that was toughest is that he sold his DD 1964 chevy 4x4 napco pickup. It was a tough deal. At least your pops has his mind and is still interested in cars. Indulge him with that and spend the time with him doing the stuff you both love. Most of all since he made the decision to let mom drive respect it, support it and enjoy the time you both have together. I turn 50 on Nov 4 and on the 5th it will be 6 years since we lost him. I miss him everyday and would give my left nut just to be able to talk to him.
  28. Atwater Mike
    Joined: May 31, 2002
    Posts: 10,073

    Atwater Mike

    My foster father was a true rodder, moved to Calif. from Oklahoma, 1946. Adopted me when I was 35, we had been close friends in cars and business, since '71. He had built the most authentic '29 roadster I remember seeing. Flathead car for years, full fendered. Then it went the way of everybody in '62, complete frame-off, paint and refurbish everything...Engine became a 283 with Power Pak heads, mild cam, and porcelainized ram horns. Won 2nd place Street Roadster in '74 Autorama, San Jose.
    He passed away last October, a week before my 75th birthday, at 87. Lung cancer.

    In 1983, my young bride-to-be had 'folks', I didn't...mine were deceased in the '50s. Ken said I had 'folks', he'd have his lawyer draw up the papers...I now had 'folks'! We were married in Santa Cruz, Joey's folks and my folks 'stood up' for us.
    Rod runs, hot rod emergency repairs, we'd get together and do it. I moved 35 miles away, opened my shop. He made lots of trips there, and I to his...we'd be the first ones to a rod run, I recall him driving in and opening his hood, there was a swinging wire framed foil pack hanging from the radiator stay rods. He said, "C'mon, Mike...Don't ya want breakfast?" Unwrapped it, inside were warm scrambled eggs and hot chorizo, and linguica. Paper plates, sat down and Man, cold morning and hot spicy sausage!
    So many great times, still think I hear him driving up.
    He was a hero to me, seems like yesterday we sat and laughed at Slim Pickens' version of 'Desperados waitin' for a train'... "Hell, Mike...That coulda been written about us!" I always get tears when I hear that one.
    Godspeed, Pop.
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2018
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  29. dirty old man
    Joined: Feb 2, 2008
    Posts: 8,535

    dirty old man

    Yall are turning me inside out. In a little under 2 months I'll be 81 And I'm still doing my damnedest to be 21:) But Father Time is truly finally catching up to me and at no time have I felt it more than I do now, as I try to get BGII, my '31 Hiboy ready for next Saturday's RWYB our annual nostalgia race.:eek: Thought I had fixed all the problems, only to find an oil leak at the rear of the intake manifold on the SBC, and I'm trying to get it back together. I'm just tired of turning wrenches to meet a deadline so I can make it to a race event.:(
    Not ready to quit driving just yet, but I think this may well be the last time I try to get a car ready to go when I ain't feeling up to getting it done. Guess there comes a time when the best enjoyment of racing is on the bench:confused:
  30. brad2v
    Joined: Jun 29, 2009
    Posts: 1,648


    Root, I'm glad you brought this up. You and I are kids around here, and it's tough watching our heroes get to be old. I remember my Grandpa turning his keys in, it was not easy for him, but he knew. My Grandma on the other side became a menace, blasting down 30 mph roads at 55 plus, and her car always had mysterious damage from "somebody in a parking lot". Sadly her health took the keys, but at least she never hurt anyone. Good on your Dad for being man enough to know when it's time.
    Roothawg and AHotRod like this.

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