I didn't realize it at the time. But today as I reflect back, a picture takes shape…
  1. I'm from Florida.
    We didn't take family vacations to New York, Europe for Hawaii. My parents' idea of fun was to drive three hours to Weeki Wachee Springs so we could see women dressed as mermaids performing underwater musicals.
  2. My dad would pay friends to bring back cases of Coors beer when they took trips to the West Coast.
    At the time you could only buy Coors west of the Mississippi. But my dad liked to treat himself once in a while and take a break from his usual beer, Old Milwaukee. And he treated every can like it was a 60 year-old bottle of single malt scotch.
  3. For my high school graduation my dad got me a 10-year-old red Camaro.
    Sweet ride. Got it up to 120 mph on the interstate. Because I'm an asshole.
  4. As a kid I went to the Daytona 500 and the Firecracker 400 stock car races.
    My dad built racecars when he was a teenager so this was his idea of fun. Of course it had to be our idea of fun too.
  5. I can name cast members from the TV show, Hee Haw.
    Buck Owens, Roy Clark, Junior Samples, Minnie Pearl, Barbi Benton, the Hager twins…
  6. We had art on our walls my mom bought at the grocery store.
    Fake paintings that were copies of French Impressionists. Classy.
  7. My parents drank garbage wines I've never seen since.
    Drambuie, Scuppernong, Blue Nun, Lambrusco, Lancers...