I remember it being a bit traumatic when DJ got her license. She drove so slow and so close to the right side of the road that I considered getting a second job as a mailman. Sitting on the passenger side of the car, I could have easily delivered the mail on our route to school, church or the grocery store. It would have given me something to focus on other than just how quickly I might die.
Now, it has come time for my second daughter to drive. Yes, Stephanie, all 5’1” of her, is taking Driver’s Ed. Whew! Perhaps even scarier than the first.
Although I have yet to warn my coworkers, we have spent some time practicing in my office parking lot. I can’t think of anyone I’d like to take out at the current moment, but I’d suggest any of you fellow Y employees reading this be kind to me. We’ve only practiced on weekends when those dudes in the office down the hall are the only ones still at work. The ones who invented steel kidneys, or some medical miracle, and who are making a bazillion dollars a year. But if you miff me, I might put her behind the wheel at 5 PM on a Monday when you’re scurrying to your car.
Other than working to help her remember the difference between drive and reverse – she’s going to have to master that – my biggest concern is how close she has to pull the seat up to get to the steering wheel.
When Stephanie gets in the driver’s seat that I’ve been occupying, it looks like a three-year-old who puts on her 6-foot-four father’s business suit. She can’t even reach the gas pedal.
She proceeds to use the automatic adjustments to raise the seat to maximum height and shift it forward until you can’t fit a baseball between her chest and the steering wheel. Kareem Abdul-Jabaar, at 7’ 2”, would have plenty of leg room sitting behind her in the backseat of my 2007 Acura MDX.
She kinda reminds me of the Where’s the Beef lady from the 1980’s Wendy’s commercials, or my mother. All petite. All requiring me to contort myself when entering an automobile after they’ve driven.
Stephanie will whip around the parking lot and then jump out of the car leaving me to readjust the seat when I take back over. I try to squeeze in, my head touching the sunroof and my knees tickling my ear lobes. It’s kinda like leaving the toilet seat up. Geeze.
Oh well, I guess it’s inevitable, we’re going to be on the road soon. So be on the lookout for a silver SUV with Rhea Pearlman behind the wheel and a very anxious father on the passenger side. Rest assured, I’ll make sure the car’s in drive before hitting the highway.