Monday, February 24, 2014

Childish Communication

To my son Tommy,

After picking you up from school, you and I headed to CVS. I had to pick up a few things for myself and wanted to see if some of the over the counter nausea remedies could augment Mommy's prescription nausea medicine as this round of extreme antiobiotics seems to be getting the best of her. When you go into CVS a Pavlovian instinct kicks in and you head to the overpriced cheap toy section. I was all set to say no to whatever you were picking out, but then like Harrison Ford in The Last Crusade, you chose wisely.

You picked out a cheap pair of plastic walkie talkies. I flashed back to my first set of crappy walkie talkies and how they were the coolest. You couldn't get more than two rooms away, any alternate frequency would interfere or override,  the morse code button would stick, and you could get better sound quality from two tin cans and a string, but they were the coolest. I doubted a five dollar set (selling for ten) was going to be any improvement on the ones I used when I was young even with tech advancements, but you had me at, "Will you show me how to use these, Daddy?"

So tonight, everything was a mission. There were bunches of 10-4's and Rogers and Copies and Overs and Affirms and Outs. You would remember to touch the button about half the time you talked, and only about a quarter of the time would you forget to release the button when you were done. The whole concept is probably very alien to a kid who grew up with cell phones and video conferencing and such. As you talked on the toy cb radio, you would get excited and want to get physically close so you could share in your youthful exuberance. Ahh the feedback sound of two walkie talkies too close brings back fond memories. In the past, it would usually come right before a younger version of your old man, would turn say, "Come in Delta team! Come in Charlie team! Foxtrot Uniform! We lost comm. Looks like we are flying solo on this mission." I will explain what foxtrot uniform means later but at that time in my life, being a military brat and hearing it often enough in radio communication, I just figured it was code for a messed up situation. Turns out I wasn't far off but still totally missed the mark.

Sincerely with love from your dad,
Or should I say Roger. Tango Mike. Daddy out.

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