Guess who passed her written test and now has her New Jersey driver’s permit? That’s right peeps, I am on my way to getting my first-ever driver’s license. (For those of you not from around these here parts, not having a driver’s licence at this stage in life is not at all that unusual. Lame, but not unusual.)
I don’t really want to get my license. If I had it my way I would never have to drive. I am a horrible pedestrian, and an even worse passenger, so the chances of me being a good driver are on the slim side. In fact, if I won the lottery but I only got 5 out of the 6 numbers or something I would spend my modest annual installment on a car and driver. I kid you not.
That being said, I have decided to man up and get this done before I’m too old to pass the vision test. I have to imagine that at some point between now and when I die being able to drive legally will come in handy. Plus, if what my new driving instructor, Harry, says is true and “old people, the handicapped, and dumb sixteen year olds can learn how to drive a car” then so can I.
I’ve had two lessons so far and, even if I do say so myself, I’m a pretty good driver. Except that I’m not really. But I am a hyper aware and
neurotic cautious driver and maybe that’s good enough for government work. I’m also pretty stubborn and generally not a fan of being told what to do. As such, Harry’s and my relationship had a bit of a rocky start….
Two minutes after Harry pulls the driver’s ed car into my driveway for our fist lesson:
Harry (begins to walk around the front of the car to get in the passenger seat, welcoming smile on his face)
Me: What are you doing? (there is a complete lack of a welcoming smile on my face)
Harry: What do you mean?
Me: You’re not thinking I’m going to start driving like right this second, are you?
Harry: Of course! This is a driving lesson, not a riding lesson. (attempting humor in order to put me at ease)
Me: Um, no. I don’t think that’s such a good idea. (opening the passenger door)
Harry: C’mon. It will be fine. Now hop in and let’s get going. (attempting charm, still smiling)
Me: You don’t understand. We need to start at the very, very, very beginning. Like in an empty parking lot or deserted airport. Because I don’t even know which one is the gas and which one is the break. Let’s not start our relationship off by committing vehicular homicide.
Harry: Don’t worry. I have a break on my side. You’ll be fine. (still not getting it, taking another step towards the passenger side door)
Me: Well, yeah but still. You can’t be too cautious, right? I mean, there are lots of dogs and kids in this neighborhood. And squirrels and stuff so….yeah… (sarcasm having failed, I give him a meek smile at an attempt to garner empathy)
Harry: (laughs). Oh you’ll be fine. I promise. I teach all sorts of people and I’m sure you will be great.
Me: Nope. Don’t think so. (jump into passenger side, shut door, put on seatbelt)
Harry: (after a beat or two turns and walks back to the driver’s side)
Other choice exchanges:
Me: You know what’d be great? If I could buy one of these “Student Driver” roof thingies and put it on my car.
Me: Seriously, if I had that then people would have to be super cautious around me and they couldn’t get mad if I drove too slow or made a mistake or something.
Harry: Yeah, sure. I think my boss has an extra one he could sell you.
Me: AWESOME. How much?
Harry: I was kidding.
Harry: You’re doing great. Ready to try the highway?
Harry: You sure? Because I think you..
Me: Nope. Sorry. Not today, my friend.
Harry: (starting to learn how this is going to go). Got it. No highway. Let’s go around the block again.
Lesson three is tomorrow. Wish me luck!
Have a great weekend you guys, and stay as far away as you can from Essex county. That’s right, the ENTIRE county.
Categories: Rants and Raves