|Wanna see something really scary? Close your eyes and imagine your kids, at 16 -- DRIVING.|
As October fast approaches, it's time to get you ready for Halloween with another scary, cautionary Darwinesque tale about how Da-da should never have had children, because they'll be lucky to survive. (See Da-da's Darwin Award #1.) Sure, Da-da was lucky --and LUCK is a survival tactic as much as good eyesight and a vast and uncompromised line of credit -- so all we can hope for is that luck is genetic. Of course, some might say that Da-da's luck has run out, and they'd be right, but those same people are locked in a concrete bunker beneath Da-da's house, forced to watch, "Chipmonk Christmas 4," over and over and over and over... that'll teach 'em. Yeah, yeah, Da-da knows, get on with it.
Picture Da-da at 16. Fresh-faced. Optimistic. Dumb as a box of dead crabs. Why is he so dumb? BECAUSE HE THINKS HE KNOWS EVERYTHING. He is 16, after all. Driving with him are his friends, who aren't much smarter, all of them loose in a Busytown part of the world, ha ha, driving in Busytown! Da-da is driving his smokin' '81 Honda Civic and OOOH, are chicks staring at us or what? No, they weren't, but not because Da-da wasn't HOT and driving a hot car. No, it was the clown decals. AND THE BLOOD. But that's so another post. Anyway, we were driving either to or from a jazz festival, and were feeling pretty silly. (Yeeees, Da-da was a band geek, though Da-da's HS jazz band was #1 in the nation three years running, so he was a SUPER MONDO band geek.) Anyway, after a short jaunt up a biggish hill to see a ritzy neighborhood, Da-da and his cohorts start back down toward the real world.
Ah, it's a gentle hill, a calm street -- sure, one that got busier the closer you got to the bottom, but that was a mile away. We were leisurely coasting down this hill, ha ha, so free, and since the car didn't need its engine burning gas to go downhill, Da-da jokingly turns the car off and tosses the keys to a friend in the backseat, ha ha ha! Look! Da-da's driving and the car's off! Ha ha! Hey, look, the street is starting to turn ever-so-gently to the right, hardly even a turn, the barest of curves, oh those trees are so pretty, the brick houses, the dappled sunlight, hey is that Bruce Willis? A little more turnage as the road curves more, a little steeper and... THE STEERING WHEEL LOCKED. GIMME THE KEYS! GIMME THE KEYS! The friend in the backseat drops them, rumblin' fumblin' stumblin', the car veers ever to slightly over the double yellow... an inch... two inches... into oncoming traffic... Da-da finally gets the keys and puts them in the ignition and unlocks the steering wheel and STEERS, STEERS LIKE THE WIND back into his own lane... only now the brakes don't work very well (they're power brakes, you dolt) and here comes the stoplight -- it's red, and traffic is howling through the intersection going the other way, but Da-da gets the car started and jams on the brakes at the crosswalk... and screeches to a halt right next to a cop. Da-da's life is begins and ends in the two seconds it takes the officer to look over at us. Da-da secretly lets out a WHOOP when he sees the guy eating a donut and drinking coffee. He didn't see anything. But he heard the tires squeal, which is a hefty ticket called, "Exhibition of Speed." The cop stares at us and we smile and wave, he looks away and air returns to our lungs, either oblivious to how stupid Da-da just was, or unable to overcome his donut inertia.
Da-da suddenly flashes into the future, where he sees his own teen children driving away in a car (probably the same damn car, blood washed off), and he starts to sweat, hoping that LUCK really turns out to be genetic, 'cause Da-da's lucky to have survived.