Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Leif and Motor Trend

Leif was fascinated with all kinds of vehicles from the time he was very small. One of his first words was "truck," and he loved anything that went under its own power. Second, but also loved, were things he could MAKE go, whether Matchbox cars or a Big Wheel. By the time he was in junior high, he began a really serious interest in cars, planes and radio-controlled cars, and subscribed to several magazines about them, which he studied carefully with far more interest than he had in his school work. He could give you endless statistics about the models of cars he found most alluring, particularly sports cars and monster trucks.

We found it really strange when this thirteen-year-old kid started getting a lot of mail from credit card companies offering him credit cards. It didn't take us long to realize that most thirteen-year-olds are not subscribing to Motor Trend and Car and Driver, and that those magazines had most likely sold their subscription lists to credit card companies.

In an effort to stop the nonsense, Leif and I devised a plan. We would have him fill out one of the applications being absolutely truthful. Occupation: junior high school student. Income: whatever his small allowance was at the time. And so on. He signed it with his terrible handwriting and sent it in. We had a good laugh thinking about what whoever opened it would think. It worked, though. No more credit card offers . . . at least until he was in college, which was a good thing. Although I don't think he would have been likely to actually get a card before he was eighteen without us signing, even as an adult he could not handle credit responsibly.

He had a lifelong love affair with vehicles and speed, and he managed to indulge them (while being in debt for it) with a Mazda RX-8 and a motorcycle, both of which he drove far too fast.

The red Ferrari is a photo that Leif took when he was 12 years old and in junior high and the drawing is one he made when he was an adult, in 1998 I think when he was 23 years old.

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