JULY 9, 2020: “CONGRATULATIONS! It’s A Stroker!” …

“The Pathetic Moron LOSER”

… who’s been discounted, dehumanized, and eviscerated at countless turns by the men who were supposed to have blind faith in and unconditional love for him.

… who’s famously spent his journey covered in engine grease and smelling like gasoline, even at his extra “bougie college“.

… who’s been chastised and mocked for the foolish wastes of time, money, and obsessive effort he’s spent making a dream come true.

… who called me all but SCREAMING and on the verge of tears late last night:

MOMMA! I did it! I totally fucking did it! She pulled 592.5 at 6500rpm!

That “moron” just made me a very proud “grease monkey GRANDMA”! He found a forged, 4-bolt, 385 cubic inch, 1955 design, ’87 small block Chevy engine at a pick and pull four years ago, and has been HELL BENT on turning it in to a stroker that would pull at least 500hp. Up until now, he’d only ever come close to that twice at 450hp.

I know that none of this either means much or makes sense to most people, and honestly, it doesn’t even make sense to me. Just know that “trash to treasuring” a thirty-plus year old cast away engine into a naturally aspirated 600hp masterpiece is a pretty big fucking deal! Even the owner of the speed shop where they had it on a dyno couldn’t believe his eyes. But, alas, there was this bittersweet moment:

Momma, Zack would have been so proud of me. He knew I could do it and told me I could! He believed in me. Only you and him EVER really believed in me!

No, son. He IS proud of you. He was there with you watching your baby run!

Nope! I’m not crying as I’m writing this, lol. Now, if you believe that, it might be YOU that’s a moron. (Just kidding!) Right now I’m an actual blubbering mess of the proudest tears a new grandmother could possibly cry, because they don’t know what I do. After a lifetime of trying to rise above the same shrapnel and less than impeccable words that almost buried us both, all I could think of was THESE most powerful and vindicating words:

They can break him down if it makes them feel right … and hate him now if it keeps them alright. They can break him down if it takes all their might, ’cause he’s SO much more that meets the eye!