Where would we be without our dads? Over the years my dad has doled out some really good information, I learned a lot of necessary life skills from him and I’m sure I’ll keep learning. Some of his advice freaked me out at the time and sounded like he had just read the Worst Case Scenario handbook but looking back it was great information to know and I will be passing it along to my own kids.
My Dad is a spitting image of Tim Allen from Tool Time. He is that character, I’m not sure he would look as much like Tim Allen if their personalities didn’t seem so spot on. There was once an episode where Tim electrocuted himself trying to change the panel on a light switch and I swear that same week my dad did the very same thing, not enough to hurt himself just enough to singe his fingertips. Enough that it was funny. In my house that is considered funny, I’m not sure what that says about us?
I have to give him credit though, he does get things done, albeit in an unconventional way and with a huge dose of creativity. I’ve learned to stay away from him while he’s fixing something, for my own personal safety, but whenever something needed fixing, he’d be the first I’d ask.
I’m sure you are on the edge of your seat wondering what this amazing life advice is. Well as a courtesy to you friends, here is some advice that could just save your life one day. You’re welcome.
What to Do if Held at Gunpoint
When I was 10 we moved to Mexico City, it wasn’t the safest city at the time, not horrible, but a little bit different than Toronto. My Dad, I guess, figured it was best if he drilled some street sense into our brain from the get go and didn’t care if we had nightmares about what could happen to us. He is an Eagle Scout so ‘Be Prepared’ is how he operates.
His advice was this: if someone grabs you on the street and says they’ll shoot you if you don’t get in their car, call their bluff and make them shoot you on the street.
Wait, what!?! That is my best option? Where did we just move to? I’m 10?! Why are you telling me this?
From a practical standpoint, now, I feel like it is good advice. What someone will do to you if they get you in the car is much worse than the likelihood of being shot on the street, was his theory. Someone that is trying to get you in their car does not want to draw attention to themselves, so scream your head off, get away and run.
Fortunately, I have not had to test this theory but I did walk a little taller and a little more confident waiting for someone to hold me up at gunpoint because I felt like I knew what I would do.
What to Do if Your Car Goes off a Bridge into Water
When I first got my driver’s license we got the house rules as every new driver does. Absolutely, under no circumstances whatsoever, I don’t care if you have to call me at 4 in the morning to pick you up (which I’d be grounded anyway because that was way past my curfew) – do you ever drive if you’ve been drinking, said my Dad. You will never get in trouble for calling me for a ride. Got it, Dad. I won’t do that (drink and drive). And I never did. I also tested his, call me at any time, and I did not get in trouble.
Second, if you go off a bridge into water the first thing you do is roll down your windows and unlock your door. Huh? What are you talking about? How am I going to go off a bridge into water? What about wear a seatbelt and don’t speed? Can’t you just give me that kind of advice?
But yes, if you go into water and your windows are rolled up then it becomes impossible to open your door and get out because of the weight of the water. And once the water hits the computer system it will shut down and you won’t be able to unlock your doors.
When you are 16 you don’t really consider every potentially dangerous scenario and what to do if it occurs, clearly this might be a little extreme. But it gave me something to think about every time I was around water. I still put my hand on the window button and door locks when I drive over water, just in case.
Along with the Worst Case Scenario handbook advice, we were also taught how to tie knots, start a fire, throw a baseball/football correctly, get a fish off the line (gross), change a burnt out fuse (old school), change out light switch panels (cut the power first), and dock a boat. There are many more but those are some of the ones that come to mind.
My dad sees each of us as someone to pass useful information along to and I was happy it wasn’t just my brother that was the recipient of these life skills.
The moral of the story here, is your kids are never too young to learn useful life skills. Treat them as mature people that are paying attention even if they seem as though they are not, because you never know what is going to stick.
Love you Dad.
What is the best advice your dad gave you? What are you definitely passing on to your own kids? Anything you’re definitely not passing on?