“Um, Dad, can you turn that music up?”
The few times my dad actually had music on in his truck, it was on audio level 1. I’m not sure why there even is a level 1 on the dial. The sound level this low was loud enough to compete with the heater fan… and the heater fan usually won.
When I asked Dad to turn the music up, he’d comply, unless he didn’t want to “because.” He’d generously turn it to 4, nope, too loud, back down to 3. I’m assuming this is why I know the melodies of many oldies station songs but have no clue what the words are.
As the notes barely tickled my eardrum, I imagined I was really rocking out. Sometimes I would sing, unless singing was prohibited at that particular time “because.”
Just as we’d approach the chorus, the only part I knew (presumably from hearing it at the grocery store or in doctor’s office waiting rooms), we’d hit a stop light.
When we stopped, the road noise silenced. My dad turned the knob ever so slightly (because, really, the knob only needed a 2/10ths turn) back to 1. When the light turned green and the road noise grew louder, the music was all but gone. I’d clear my throat, “Um, Dad, can you turn the music back up?”
Usually my question would receive a slight tap in decibels, unless it was a no “because” and “you’ll be fine.”
This game of turning the volume up and down continued through 5, yes 5 lights. My dad always “forgot” or “didn’t notice” the music was back at, let’s face it – zero, at every light.
The other night, I thought about this stressful game of “Um, can you turn that music up?” I was driving back from my 8-year-old’s basketball practice blasting on of my favorite songs “Turn the Radio Up (make me lose control)” Riley yelled, “Mommy, turn it down, it’s too loud!”
I said, “No” and “because” followed by “you’ll be fine.”
I’ve been blaring my music in my own car since I was 17 years old and I NEVER turn it down at stoplights.