That time I fucked up

Before I start this, let me include a brief disclaimer for my dear friend Decki who totally called me out on the “time I dropped the ball” post.  *spoiler alert* this situation also turns out ok and is not deep.  I have far too many times I’ve fucked up to choose from and even a recent as Sunday morning had a completely different post in mind… but as life will sometimes do, a new experience required me to submit this as my “that time I fucked up” post.  In the end we were laughing… at my inadequacies.

**I should also point out that two of my faithful readers have already been blessed with this tale.  Sorry to you both.  Fresh content will happen again.  Maybe tomorrow.**

First of all, you must understand that in our family, we plan.  WAYYYY in advance.  I already know what we are doing two spring breaks from now.  We count months by the weekends…specifically, weekends when I have the boys.  I share this because for the last several weeks, we’ve been planning to take the power boat out on Lake Georgetown.  Like a kid who knows that the trip to Disneyland is coming, the Giant could NOT hold in his excitement and has been prepping the boat for two weekends now.  Along with our scheduled outing, we also planned that it was high time that the Giant and I learn all things boating so that we can take the boat out without the parents.  Since he’s not old enough to drive the truck and trailer, that task fell to me.

Now this is going to come to a shock to many of you… those who know me at least… I have never learned how to back up a trailer.  Oh I’ve driven a trailer… hauled one to New Braunfels for camping and then all the way up to Colorado where it stays. I’m very deft at never NEEDING to back up.  I get there and hop out and let the men do the hard work of backing the thing up.  I always thought I’d have a partner in my life that could take care of the tasks I didn’t like… the killing of snakes and the backing up of trailers.  So far, no such luck.  So it’s time I learn.

Dad has been in a mood lately.  {Lots of stress with a slew of repairs being done at the house and totally understandable}  We got to the lake and I immediately chicken out.  I tell mom – “Nope… not today.  Dad’s not in a patient frame of mind. And I’m a chicken shit” Mom laughed and said “Don’t worry.  I talked to him.  It will be fine.” Famous. Last. Words.

I feel I should also explain here that Dad is an amazing brilliant man.  He can do ANYTHING and is and always will be my hero. Well… almost anything.  He was never cut out to be a teacher.  He has two teaching styles – Condescending and Shrieking.  So I reluctantly take my position behind the wheel of the 1990 Ford F-150.  Manual Transmission.  Oh goody.

Thank GOODNESS there was no one else attempting to use the boat ramp because I was ALL OVER the place.  There was screaming.  There were tears.  At one point, I just stopped.  Unwilling to even try any more.  But of course, I’m stubborn so I do try more… When I finally get down closer to the water, Mom and the boys climb in so I can back all the way in and the Giant can drive the boat off the trailer.  Now I have mom telling me to turn the wheel left and dad telling me to turn the wheel right and neither are using their calm indoor voices because that’s just not how we communicate in my family.  We yell.  It makes us feel more likely to be heard I suppose.

By some miracle I get the boat in… The giant backs the boat off the trailer.  There’s still screaming going on but it’s not at me so I’m not sure I cared at this point. I know what’s next.  What’s next is I get to drive FORWARD.  A skill I have already mastered.  Dad and I head over to the parking lot where NONE OF THE SPOTS look “Newbie friendly” and dad says “Ok, we’re gonna drive down to the end and turn around and then we’re gonna back into a space.” Oh great because I did so awesome at driving in reverse BEFORE???  I’ll have you know I only tried to back the damn thing into a parking spot 18 times before I turned the wheel over to Dad to park the damn thing.  Otherwise, we might still be there with me trying.  I’m convinced the parking spots were drawn at the wrong angle.  As we are walking down to the water after parking fiasco 2014, Dad points out all the other vehicles… that are NOT backed in and says “see all these other trucks? They can’t back in either” Great.  So we had the NEWBIE try to do something others can’t do?!? Thanks Dad.  Way to boost my confidence.

By now we are down at the water.  The Giant is slowly (ish) bringing the boat in close enough for us to join them.  With the lake levels as low as they are, there are no docks from which to join your party.

I’ve been on boats my entire life.  I’m well versed in how to pull yourself onto a boat.  I have no fucking clue what I was thinking when I swung one leg over the front rail, holding on and was going to pull my ass up over the side.  This is NOT how it should be done.  As I soon remembered…when the boat started moving backwards and I was now in water too deep to touch with the remaining foot in the water.  I didn’t have enough upper body strength to pull myself over the rail so I’m left with no good options.  Mom is laughing.  HARD.  The Giant is seriously concerned and offended by mom’s raucous laughter… especially since the woman doesn’t laugh out loud EVER.

I’m still hanging on.  One foot in the boat, one foot not.  Mom’s in hysterics.  Dad is screaming.  I have no idea where mini-me is at this point but he’s probably laughing too. I have no choice by to just let go and try again… so into the water I go.  Not completely in of course, because I was having a good hair day, but enough to be glad that I had my phone in its handy dandy lifeproof case because when in a bathing suit, we all know where the phone goes…and deep enough that the giant couldn’t even see me so he’s thinking he’s run his mother over… I’m just racking up the therapy bills day by day.

Mom’s still in hysterics but opts to take over the driving part of the entertainment and the Giant – still very concerned for the well being of his mama pulls me into the boat.  I’m glaring at her now because while funny, I’m not sure it was THAT funny.

This makes mom laugh harder. The Giant is stressed.  Dad is screaming.  Happy Mother’s Day to us all!

We enjoyed ourselves once we were out there.  Mom finally stopped laughing until I started to retell the story again from my perspective.  Now is the point when Dad tells me a little piece of advice about how to steer a trailer that WOULD HAVE BEEN HELPFUL BEFORE!! {for those that don’t know, stick your hand at 6:00 on the steering wheel to steer the trailer.  12:00 to steer the vehicle.  You’re welcome}

We were having so much fun out there that I almost forgot that Oh shit… I have to back the trailer down again to get the boat out of the water.  Crap.

And this time, there are people.  Using the boat ramp.  It doesn’t matter that there are 4 lanes, I need ALL OF THEM.  I’m not going to say I was perfect because it was in fact only the 2nd time I had ever successfully backed a trailer in the history of ever {we’re ignoring the 18 attempts to park from earlier} but I did pretty good.  In fact, no damage was caused and no one died.  The giant does AWESOME at driving the boat up onto the trailer – especially since it was windy as hell and even seasoned boaters were having difficulty lining everything up just right.  We get the boat latched and now it’s time for the easy part.  The driving forward part.

I’m doing fine until I get about halfway up when for some stupid reason I decide to shift gears.  Do Not Ask Me WHY.  I do not know.  I do however know that this was a bad plan because now I’m halfway up the ramp and starting to go backwards so I floor it which caused a beautiful sound of squealing, spinning tires accompanied by the fragrance of burnt rubber and so much smoke that I almost couldn’t see my dad frantically screaming and turning 15 shades of red.  Almost.  As he came running up to the open window on the passenger side ready to scream all I could do was scream first “I know!  I know!”

And that my loyal readers, was the most recent time I fucked up.

As I said, it all ended well.  I was able to pull the boat and truck the rest of the way up the mountain that is the boat ramp, put it in park, turned off the engine, engaged the parking brake and hopped out to relinquish my spot behind the wheel.  I was done driving… until two weeks from now when we get to do it all over again.


Axis of Ineptitude

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  1. I wouldn’t give you an ounce of shit for this because I would have been crappin’ mah pants HOLY CRAP. I love a good “skin of my teeth” story. *phbbbbbbbbttttttttttt*

  2. I don’t wish that sort of chaos on anyone. I also don’t look forward to the day I have to drive our car with the trailer attached.

  3. Is it okay that I’m laughing? Laughing hysterically? I hope we’re still friends because one day I’ll tell you about my dad and teaching me to drive. My father sounds very much like yours!

  4. Anonymous says

    I hate to sound sexist…..but REVERSE GEAR and the female gender do NOT mesh well….mix in a boat trailer….and it can get ugly quickly. Your are lucky the old truck is not submerged.

  5. Not to laugh at your expense. But soooo funny! 🙂

    • Trust me- I was laughing as I typed it all up. If you can’t laugh at yourself what’s the point?

  6. Yikes. I would not have liked one minute of that. I hate having to back the car into anything other than a completely empty, huge driveway. When no one is around.

  7. How utterly nerve-wracking. Bless all of your hearts. Twice.

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