I’ve just spent about 13 hours in the car with a fellow dad whom I’ve never met before.

His name: Ron Mattocks.

Ron is the epitome of the cool dad.  I wish I was more like him, and yet, as we talked on the ride over, we found we have many things in common, but we’ll leave what was talked about in the car, in the car.

But the coolest thing I can share with you was last night near sundown.

He got a call from his boys.

He’s found a great subject to relate with his boys about.  A video game.  And they talked for a good long while while I drove.

Can’t tell you how much as a guy it would have been great to have a call like that with a different generation, say, like between me and my dad when I was that age.  We have some of those types of conversations now that I’m older but it was great to hear the conversation.

The other cool thing about yesterday and driving the Chevrolet Traverse that’s been loaned to me to get here from Dallas to Atlanta, was that my three daughters had the On-Star phone number to the car.  So throughout the day, we got calls from the girls.  Then came texts.  One of the twins said, “Hey did you pick up the other person?” Me, “Yes.” The twins: “Hey other person!” They knew the name Ron, I think, but other person came out cute and fun.

When we pulled the Traverse onto Mom’s Carport last night and went in to say hi, the Traverse looked like a big car.  When mom saw it, that was the first thing that came out of her mouth: “That’s a big car.”

She enjoyed the ride this a.m. to breakfast.  Ron let her sit up front.  Chevy, she wants to try out an Equinox.  That seems like it’d be more to her size needs.


We are now here at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Atlanta.  It took the porters two carts worth, and a third trip up with my extra five-foot table to get all the stuff we had in the Traverse up to the room.  Yeah, it hauls that much stuff, and 85 percent of it was in the back of the car behind the second row with the third-row seating down.  The point is, it took a lot for the porters to get all the goods upstairs.  And we still had more room. 

Before leaving Montgomery, Ron gave Mom a signed copy of his great book, Sugar Milk, What one dad drinks when he can’t afford Vodka.  And then we talked about the frustrations of seeing kids waste cereal milk, cereal, and I talked about how my ex-wife would go through a case of Diet Coke a day in my day.  Back in 1998, you can ask some of my friends, I’d actually calculated how much Diet Coke would have been wasted by my first wife if we’d been married for 40 years based on her 1998 consumption rates.  My calculation: $75,000 worth.

So now, we’re here in Atlanta.  I’ve almost got my working office set up in my room.  Lots to do.  And then we’ve got TV to do beginning at 5 a.m. local here on the CBSAtlanta affiliate, then Ron’s on at 6 on the same station.  At 9, I’m joining a rep from Chevy and we’re going on Good Day Atlanta on the FOX station.  And more and more gets done to get ready for M3.

  1. Clark Kent's Lunchbox

    dude, you are just too cool. Thanks for those kind words and for all the opportunities. I’ve really enjoyed getting to know you, meeting you mother & hearing from the girls. You can tell how much they all love you and how important you are to them. It didn’t take but a minute to figure that out by the way they all reacted to you. Think it’s going to be a great event, and even if it’s not, then I’m grateful for the chance to get to know you better.

  2. BenSpark

    Sounds like it was a really great trip. I want to see that segment from FOX but can’t find it online yet.

  3. Donny Claxton

    Hope you saw the links I put up on the site. Looking forward to meeting you.

  4. scadenfreudette

    I’m so glad you guys are enjoying your trip together. I love hearing him talk to the boys. His whole face and voice and spirit lights up. He truly is an amazing father. It sounds like you have that in common.

    Also, I can just imagine the wild tales he is telling of my own diet coke consumption. Don’t believe a word of it. 😉

  5. Donny Claxton

    Thanks for sharing him and for working with him to share your stories. They’ve been fun to hear and enlightening.

  6. Jack

    Disappointed that I can’t join in the fun this time around. Have a great time.

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