Girls just wanna have fun!

winterbeachSooo…. A co-worker came by today. He loves automotive vee-hickles and is known for being very particular about what he buys. He has apparently been wondering for some time now who the Ninja vee-hickle in the parking lot belongs to. Not sure if he has ever wondered about the Dogha, which is parked out there just about as often as the Ninja but whatever.

Yes, it’s mine (and the GG’s, of course). This co-worker is a wonderful guy and he was honestly amazed when he figured out that this baggy old kayak woman belonged to the Ninja (er, 6-speed manual Honda Civic SI). A younger co-worker perhaps, he might’ve been thinking? Actually, most of us are not terribly young where I work but that might be a whole ‘nother story. And this co-worker is somewhere around my age.

I love to drive. I’ve been fascinated by driving my whole life. I remember watching The Commander shift that jeep thing that my grandfather bought and parked at my dad’s house (who remembers what kind of vee-hickle that is? I should but I don’t and The Engineer is on the other side). I could do that too! Roight! When my feet could reach the pedals maybe. Back in the day, I got my driver’s license on an automatic transmission Pontiac Tempest. Power steering? I think not, but I may be wrong. We also owned a VW Bug but I was not taught to drive a stick then.

So. I was 19. It was summer. I was home between college years. I asked Grandroobly to teach me how to drive a stick. Not good. He kept making me stop and start again, et al, ad nauseam. I couldn’t follow his directions and it didn’t end well. To be fair, he was accustomed to teaching pilots and there’s a lot less room for error there. I finally convinced The Commander to let me take the VW to town on my own. And I stalled in the middle of the Ashmun/Easterday intersection, the biggest intersection in town at that time. And *that’s* when I learned to drive a stick. I can’t say that I haven’t stalled a stick vee-hickle since then. I’ve even (yeek) stalled the Ninja. But I am pretty goddamn smooth 99% of the time.

Yes, you guys, girls can drive sticks. Love y’all anyway!

12 Responses to “Girls just wanna have fun!”

  1. isa Says:

    in fact, i think i have taught more than one boy how to drive stick…

  2. Kathy Farnell Says:

    I can drive a stick, but why does anyone want to? I have no desire to “go there” again!

  3. Dog Mom Says:

    OOOH I enjoy driving a stick! It wouldn’t be a proper Miata with an automatic! The first car that was “mine” … and the second, too … were both 4 on the floor types. Then came a handful of automatics. Then the Scirocco – the first 5-speed I’d had the pleasure of driving (altho that wasn’t often – The Engineer kinda was possessive about it… it WAS a VW after all *sigh* ). I think the Miata’s been the in the stable the longest of all the sticks (not counting the ’68 Beetle, which was *Jim’s* and NOT TO BE TOUCHED – I think I got to drive it all by myself maybe once…. and that was when the Chevette blew its timing chain).

    Memorable experience? Driving home from then back to MTU in the worst winter driving weather (12 hours each way, instead of 8) with a passenger who had no clue how to drive a stick. *Male* passenger. Jim couldn’t help; he had the scotch tape-and-baling wire Gremlin that he was ferrying between Houghton & the Soo at that time. We followed each other, but obviously couldn’t “spell” each other, either. I could’ve used a break…. 12 straight hours of blizzard driving is, well, you know….

  4. Dog Mom Says:

    uh, that wasn’t supposed to be the “cool smiley”, it was supposed to be an emphasized “numeral eight”)

  5. Jay Says:

    In 1978 I bought a used Mustang with a 4-speed, and learned how to drive a stick. Went through the stall/go bit on the freeway going to work. Yes, there was plenty of opportunities to start in 1st on the freeway. Until the Prius, all cars in between were sticks. Even our mini-van. A few years ago I taught both kids how to drive with the stick shift, but as soon as the automatic appeared they both opted for that. Last summer Ashlan re-entered the stick shift world so she would be able to drive both cars. More flexibility. I like sticks for the control they provide, but then I have been told I am a control freak.

  6. Pooh Says:

    “Not a control freak, just a control person!” Your loving sister

  7. jane Says:

    Jay taught me to drive a stick with that Mustang. in a parking lot in Boulder I think.

  8. Margaret Says:

    You are better than I am! I can still drive a stick, but am horribly rusty. The only vehicle we have that’s manual is our Jeep CJ-7 and it has the worst clutch on the planet!!

  9. gg - trainer of new drivers Says:

    Okay. I have taught many of the kids to drive a stick.

    Here is my observation.
    Kids need to be at least seven years old before they can stay on the road without excessive supervision.
    Girls seem to be the better operators of stick shifts.
    Boys and girls both do much much much better when trained at an early age (as soon as they can reach the pedals).
    Teenagers have a harder time learning.

    Those smart boys “know everything already”. You can’t possibly teach them as much as a girl.

    Dumb girls are pretty smart!!!

    Did y’all notice that, so far, only “girls” replied to this post?

  10. Dog Mom Says:

    Only girls, UNTIL the GG replied, that is!

    I learned to drive stick at the age of 15. And I think I do pretty durned well with it, too.

  11. Fran Says:

    I had my driver’s license at 14 – taught and supervised by my dad for two years. All stick in those days.The car was a Ford Model A. Great fun!

  12. grandmothertrucker Says:

    The GG taught me how to drive when I was 12. It wasn’t a stick, it was a huge buggy green LTD… it was a boat… through a grenaid testing field in Gaylord ( the MP’s were upset and told me I had to leave the area lol…. )

    I never drove a stick, until I learned to drive a big truck 3 years ago. I have still never driven a car with a stick before. I did have a truck that was an automatic for a short time. That was no fun.