Baby, You Can Drive My Car... Maybe...

I am green with envy. Shai got a new ubercute pink car! She told us all about it, and I now tell you about my own car/driver escapades...

1) I took driver's education in high school, when I was 15 1/2 years of age. My instructor could've been an army general the way he would order us about. He was also not human. It would be -20C outside, and he wouldn't wear a coat.

2) I passed my written driver's test on the first try, but failed the in-car test twice before passing. Oh, wait, I did pass the parallel parking portion of the test the first time, but failed everything else.

3) The first car I drove by myself after getting my driver's license was my dad's Ford Comet. It was in the middle of winter to my piano lesson. I didn't like taking piano lessons. I also don't like winter.

4) I learned how to drive stick-shift at the age of 29 after Roomie and I bought our current car, our beloved burgundy '91 Toyota Tercel 5-speed. Roomie was my instructor. He gave me some line about "being one with the machine". I thought he was full of shit until I realized he was right. But only a little right.

5) I don't want to ever own an automatic transmission vehicle any more. I've been spoiled. Manual transmission gives you so much control over the vehicle. And yes, I'm a control freak.

6) I hate turning left.

7) My dream car is a Pontiac Vibe FWD. It must be in Red Hot Metallic/Burgundy, and of course, 5-speed manual transmission.


  1. I failed too :( Written test was a breeze (and I can never understand how anyone fails a ridiculous 25 question, all multi choice, test), but we have two practicals and I failed each of them once. Although I deserved to fail the first (couldn't parallel park and the driving instructor pushed me through the test anyway), the second time the guy was an ass and pulled me up on a u-turn when I had oodles of time to turn, then I royally effed it up on the second chance cos he was an ass and made me nervous. That was the same guy that failed me the first time too. Luckily on my second tries I had a much better driving instructor beforehand and much nicer testers as well. I'm a manual girl too, wanted an auto last time I was in the market, but they are too gutless when I wanted a max of 1.8 litres. Now I live in a hilly city I'm especially glad I have the manual!

  2. Well, where I grew up...

    1. Driver's Ed was taken during junior year of high school - so I was 16 1/2 by the time I could apply for a permit and then 17 when I took the Driver's Exam. Our HS instructor has nerves of steel and quicker reflexes than the lot of us in our lifetime. (He was also 60+ years old too)

    2. Pass written exam and would have failed the actual in-car test because I was not driving up to the speed limit. It was a 40 miles per hour zone and I was doing 25 - I pointed out to the DMV instructor that we were driving through a school zone and 40 MPH was unsafe. He let me off the hook and passed me. As a result of this - I am now a speed demon.

    3. My first car was the family's '79 Cutlass Supreme Station Wagon with wood adhesive decals that were peeling on the outside, an 8 cylinder engine with so much horsepower that if you ever so slightly tapped the gas pedal - you'd go from 0-60 in like 10 seconds, and an 8 track player where my dad owned a disco compilation and a couple of KISS 8 track cassettes.

    Ah, it's a shame my daughter will never be able to appreciate this.

  3. I learned to drive with a standard. I refused to let my dad teach me and got my step-mom to do it instead (It was just better that way). We drove all the back mile-roads around our place. My dad sat stone-silent in the center back seat, only flinching & groaning *once* as I turned on a road that had a particularly deep ditch to the right (failure would have been catastrophic).

    I stalled the car multiple times, and had great frustration in learning to get the damned thing going. As we finished the lesson, pulled back onto the yard and came to a stop, my aforementioned silent father reached between the two bucket seats and released the parking brake. I have not had a problem with manual transmission since!

  4. I am so left handed that a stick shift is virtually out of the question. I've operated one before, but I haven't any skill or flair with it, which would make it silly for me to own one.

    I'll have to stick to automatic until I move to Tuscany as a retiree. (I'd BETTER be moving to Tuscany as a retiree).