For The Love Of Christ

by Chris Okum

We were driving up the side of a mountain, on our way to do some serious sledding, and we were clinging to each other, asking our dad to please slow down, when suddenly our dad pulled over to the side of the road and got out of the car. He walked across the two-lane highway and approached a man who was standing in the snow. Our dad started talking to the man, who was not dressed for the cold. The man wore surf shorts and a tank-top and had a dirty beard and parched red skin that looked like it was freshly sunburned. Our dad and the man shook hands. At first it looked like they were happy to see each other, but then the man started waving his arms around like he was mad and, after a few moments, so did our dad. Minutes passed and then our dad got back in the car. He locked the doors and turned on the ignition. He turned around and looked at us and said, I used to know that guy. Then he said, Now watch this, because I'm about to teach you a very valuable life lesson. Dad put the car in drive and drove away from the man, who chased the car at first but then gave up as soon as we rounded the next bend at a speed that caused us to resume clinging to each other and begging our dad to please, for the love of Christ, please slow down. Our dad was always trying to teach us valuable life lessons, and most of them did not take, except, for some reason, the life lesson our dad taught us that day on the side of the mountain, as evidenced by how we reacted when, years later, driving up the side of the same mountain, headed towards the same spot to do some more serious sledding, we saw our bearded, sunburned and inappropriately dressed dad standing on the side of the road and drove right past him, as fast as we could.