Book Reviews, Cat Reviews and Life Reviews

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Location: Washington State, United States

29 August 2006

Learning to Drive- The Dad Way

Learning to drive left permanent scars in my head. My dad was the lucky one who got to teach me. We were the only kids in our school whose parents had Volkswagens. Everyone else had the land-barges of the seventies. My parents were sort of hippies as far as their politics. From the time we could stand up, we washed the cars. Those were the days of chrome bumpers, and those got rust on them. I remember sitting on the driveway cement and applying "Brasso" until the rust came off. It took a lot of elbow grease. I still use "Brasso" today, as a matter of fact.
Anyway, before I was even allowed to sit behind the wheel, I had to read "How to Keep Your Volkswagen Alive: A Manual of Step-By-Step Procedures For The Compleat Idiot" cover to cover (I think this book was the mother of all the "Dummy/Idiot" books you see today.) My dad took me to a parking lot to learn the basics of handling a stick- shift; unfortunately my parents didn't believe in automatic transmissions. I remember the poor Bug jerking violently in 1st gear, and my dad asking me "Now what happens in the car when you push the clutch in?" My thought(answer) was "I don't give a flying ?%#@%*^ what is happening in the car- I just want to get out of 1st gear." To this day, I still hear his voice when I'm pushing the clutch in.
But, as a result of all this, I do know a bit about car repair and trouble-shooting.
My dad also sort of taught me to drive the Dutch way. I'm thinking that most police would frown on this. I remember when I got my first car. It was a 1969 Volvo, and I can hear my dad telling me to go ten miles over the speed limit around corners-"these cars just love to corner!"
Maybe that's why I grew up to own a MINI Cooper S that has the bumper sticker "Bend the Rules-Rule the Bends" on the back.
Damn you, Daddy.

Here it is today:


Blogger Amanda said...

(some) years ago, my husband and I bought our first car, a '72 Beetle.
best car we ever had, sigh.....

29 August, 2006 23:23  
Blogger Kara said...

My parents refused to purchase automatics too! It's a damn good thing you can't fail your driver's test just by killing the engine 4 times going around 2 blocks. I didn't even drive an automatic until I was 18 or 19. And I've never owned one. Automatics are for pansies!

30 August, 2006 08:30  
Blogger INAMINI said...

Amanda- I was pretty ticked off when my dad sold the bus and the bug without telling me. I would have bought them!

Kara- I refuse to own an automatic either, although sometimes when
I have to stop on steep hills, it feels like the tranny might shoot out the back of the car. B wanted me to get an automatic on the MINI so he could drive it to work, but I wouldn't do it (I said it was to save money!) I just can't stoop that low.

30 August, 2006 09:22  
Anonymous Corky said...

Cool sticker girl!

31 August, 2006 20:45  
Blogger INAMINI said...

Corky, thanks. That's the rule for my life!

01 September, 2006 18:57  

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