Actually Gary, truth be told that post was cold sarcasm. I just didn't feel the need to go into the father son dynamics.
Generally, with my son I am very lucky. At fifteen when this happened he was afraid to approache me. His reasons however are quite different from "fear of dad" .... he knows that we are persons of limited means and that it is a stretch for us to have him at a ski school. He also knows that I would want to replace the jacket and did not want to see me spend the money. He simply didn't understand that there was a possibility that had he called there may have been some recourse with the airline.
Where he trains is one of the most hostile and coldest hills in the east (this year was an exception of course). He still didn't want a new jacket the other day ..... "I'll ski with holes in the back, I don't care" ...
The "butt chewing" he got was on safety. He needed to understand that Gortex with huge holes can get him into trouble pretty quickly if it gets soaked and there is a change (drop) in the tempratures .... these are some pretty big holes and gashes.
The look on his face when I offered him my new jacket last year ... well ... I could tell that he wanted it but first said no ... of course when I insisted ...he was delighted.
Our biggest battle is "Dad ... you spend too much on me quit it" ... but he never asks for anything .... but he uses everything he gets to the max.
His grades are great ... not from parental prodding or anything we have to do with it ... he just does damned well in school despite us. He is amazing, he did so well on those PSAT's we are bombarded now with the hustles from all of the Ivy schools and West Point etc ... he scored real high!Most importantly, he is a nice person.
One day when he was about eleven I took him to an out of the way slope with fresh powder. I said to him go ahead buddy, get your first tracks ... he hesitated and told me to go first. I said to him ... hey, I've had lots of first tracks, your turn. He looked at me and said .. "but Dad, I'm a kid and have lots of time. there will be a lot more .... let's go together" ...
My biggest challenge is the delicate balance between being his father and his friend .... so delicate a line ... ??
Sorry ... I'm not "bragging" about my kid .... I just feel pretty lucky.