For the love of Herbie

16 Jan

I think it is safe to say that today’s average nine year-old does not know very much about Herbie the Love Bug.  Yes, there was a more recent movie Herbie Fully Loaded done not too long ago, but it’s not like you can find Herbie toys at the store, or find shirts with Herbie on the front.  But let me tell you, my son is the exception to the rule.

My son loves Herbie!  He has for years.  He has seen all six movies.  In fact when he had just turned three we took a trip to Disney World as a graduation gift to my twin step-sons.  At one of the stunt shows Herbie made a guest appearance.  I of course was not prepared for the fact that my son spotted him immediately, and did what any three year-old would do if they saw their favorite thing in the world…he took off.  The only thing he was focused on was Herbie!  I think all parents can agree with this next statement.  Man! Can a three-year-old move fast when they want too!  He shot off my lap like his pants were on fire.  By the time my brain kicked in he was already well out of arms reach and well on his way to his destination.  You also have to remind yourself that I am in a wheelchair.  I DO NOT go down stairs!  So as you can imagine, I am now screaming at my husband to go get our son.  I love my husband and he is a great dad.  With this said, his response was not as fast as I wanted.  In fact it was much, much slower than I wanted.  By the time he got to my son he was only about a foot away from the bottom of the amphitheater.

My son was very convinced that he was going to see Herbie, and he was almost there!  With this in mind, I am very sure that you can vividly picture his response when this dream was cut short by none other than his very own father!  I was about 30 steps above him, but I could clearly see and hear the magnitude of his disappointment.  His face had a look of sheer horror and the sound coming out of his mouth matched his face perfectly!

When your children have these kinds of explosions in public you always have such a mixed response from bystanders.  You have the group that is still in touch with their own parenting years, or are currently in them. They give you encouraging looks of sympathy and support.  I love this group!  Then comes the faces that you know at one glance that they have either not had children yet, don’t want to have children, or had children so long ago that they have completely wiped the memory from their minds.  I don’t mind these people too much because they are just ignorant, brain dead or a little of both.  The group that drives me crazy is the people that give you that look that says, “Really…can’t you control your child?  My children never do things like that!”  I know that is a lot to say in a look, but if you have been there, you know exactly what I am talking about.  Now let’s be clear.  I have been known a time or two to give the look of, “Will you please stop spoiling your child and discipline him!” But this was clearly not one of those circumstances.  My poor son, in his three-year-old little mind, had no way of grasping the idea that he could not go see Herbie.  It was also very hard for everyone else to grasp just how much he adored Herbie.

A genetic (like his father) passion for the love of cars, mixed with the personality and
fun-loving nature of Herbie and you have the perfect recipe for the BEST CAR EVER…in the eyes of my son.  I am actually very thankful that my son is not too old, at nine, to still love Herbie.  I mean what is not to love?  He’s the under-dog that wins the race!  There is no logic involved, but so what.  Herbie just wants to do what he loves to do. On top of this, he races with such a wonderful passion that comes only with doing something you thoroughly enjoy.  Add to this the fact that Herbie is loyal to his friends and wants to do the best he can for them and you have one amazing car.  So who can blame my son for wanting to meet Herbie?  I wish we could all have a Herbie in our lives.  OK, so maybe Herbie is a little out of date.  But maybe good things just never go out of style.  In our house Herbie the Love Bug will always be very cool!

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