About "I'm My Father's Son... How Unfortunate For Him":

Already, some folks have asked if this really happened.

Yes, indeed, it did. My father slew a grizzly bear with a Bowie knife, and I shot the engine of our truck on an ill-fated hunting trip.

The thing about my dad, though, is that nothing ever throws him for a loop. He gets angry, he curses everything in sight, but he always knows exactly what to do in response.
He was the master of a commercial fishing vessel for almost 20 years. If you are unclear on the heirarchy of marine chains of command - The captain runs the ship, issuing orders and such. The Master outranks the captain. The Master is the guy who makes EVERYTHING go. He is the glue that holds everything together. Before a ship sets sail, the Master is completely in charge. By some weird maritime law, the Master can actually evict the OWNER of a ship from deck. Naturally, the Master will be looking for a new ship to command once he comes back into port, but that's beside the point - when a Master of a vessel speaks, commands are followed or people die.
And that's what life with him was like. He was rarely wrong, so questioning him simply meant wasted time, and if there is one thing my father cannot abide, it's wasted time. He is up at 5:00 AM every single day. He has routines that minimize the time between fetching the newspaper and drinking his first cup of coffee. He simply does not play around.
So, spending the better part of the morning in the woods wondering why no deer were making themselves available to be shot, only to find out that I was listening to an electronic CD player while scratching pencil against paper all day really infuriated him.
Once I shot our car, it was exactly like it was a scene in a movie that he had no choice but to accept and move past. He didn't ask why, he didn't assign blame, he didn't moan say "WHAT WILL WE DO NOW?!?" He simply asked God to damn the truck a few times and started emptying the back out so we wouldn't have to sleep in the dirt. It was like he fully expected it to happen and already had a plan in mind.

I love my father.

As for how I blew a hole in the middle of the desk:
I was working with my dad's black powder, trying to make a bomb out of a tennis ball. I had worked for hours scraping the heads off of matches so i could just throw it and it would ignite. I poured a very volitile glue solution made of superglue and gasoline into the small slit I cut on tennis ball, swirled it around, poured the match heads into it, swirled THAT around, poured in the black powder, accidentally dropped it -


A gigantic crater in my drawing desk.