Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Old Story

Posted by Phil Aaronson at 2:42 PM

We were on a "Jesus" ride. That's what I call a two hour loop that, at one point climbs up Jefferson out of Redwood City to a huge white cross overlooking the bay. It had rained for several days but had cleared. Visibility wasn't getting much better. Perfect time for a "Jesus" ride. On the way out, we rolled through the town of Atherton and were stopped by a red light. On the corner, a father and son were in the driveway arguing. The father was wearing a suit. The son was doing the grunge thing. They were several steps apart.

Their voices rise, finally the son yelled, "why are you always putting me down!"

And he delivered it with enough raw emotion that I looked away embarrassed. But more noise and movement drew my eyes back just as quickly. They exchange a few more words that I couldn't quite hear and that was just as well. The father's face and stance hardened. The son turned away, but then paused. The father wore that same look. The young man shrugged his shoulders and spat, "I'm outta here." He sauntered off towards his car. The father looked at his feet, then watched his son walk off. From our vantage their story was told more with body language and expression than dialog.

The light turned green, and we started off. We both have five year old daughters, so I said jokingly, "There's us in ten years." My riding buddy laughs, but the quip doesn't fit. This was a father-son story, and I don't have a son. We're stomping on the pedals getting back up to speed, and I was reminded of East of Eden. "No story has power, nor will it last, unless we feel in ourselves that it is true and true of us." We didn't see Abel, just Cain, but it still rang true. Maybe you just need Cain?

The view from the top of the hill was great.


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