Granta 104: ‘Fathers’ includes recollections of their fathers by nine writers. For Granta.com, we have invited new writers to reflect upon a picture of their father. The second in our series is by Gary Shteyngart, one of Granta’s Best of Young American Novelists.

 

portraitofmyfathershteyngart

 

Disney World. 1986. I am fourteen years old and this is the only time I have ever successfully driven a car in my entire life. My father looks like he’s imparting some kind of important bumper car advice. ‘You want to go into the skid.’ Or maybe he’s just secretly thrilled by the manly way in which I have piloted a moving vehicle (even one set on rails). The next time I was behind the wheel I practically drove my college ex’s Buick into a Shoney’s franchise in Alabama. But on that that muggy Floridian day, I cared enough to get my dad safely to the finish line. Disney World brings out the best in people.

 

Featured photograph by Tom Simpson

Rabih Alameddine | Portrait of My Father
Updike Remembered