August 21, 2018

into the hood

Dinner conversation last night ....

Kid:  "I got to drive half the time today.  We went all the way down to Wendy's, the one by the highway, and ate lunch, and then the other student got to drive, and then I took over again at the middle school and drove back to the high school.  I totally failed at a three-point turn, though."


Me:  "See?  Now, instead of shit-yourself terrified, you're merely tremendously nervous.  I told you doing it would help you calm down.  You can do this."

P.J.:  "Everyone feels this way at first."

Kid:  "Yeah, Mr. Jenkins has a brake on his side of the car, too, so he can hit it if he thinks you should be hitting yours and you're just not doing it.  Which is, um, kind of good, I guess.  He's nice."

Me:  "Fucking yeah?  My driver's ed teacher was a total asshole.  He would play loud country music the whole time, and go through the McDonald's drive-thru and get a sausage gravy biscuit tray and eat it in front of us and not let us order anything, and we weren't allowed to talk at all.  Probably because of Garth Brooks being turned up all the way.  Prick."

Kid:  "Mr. Jenkins is actually pretty cool.  He reaches over and turns the wheel a little sometimes, and he talks to us, and lets us get lunch.  Totally different."

Me:  "You're lucky."

P.J.:  "Are you able to look anywhere except between the lines on the road?"

Kid:  "Nope!"

Me:  "That's normal, too.  Seriously.  It's like learning a video game.  After a while, your brain just knows stuff without you having to scout everything out, right?"

P.J.:  "Yeah, it's just like that.  Good one."

Kid:  "And I guessed right about what a tachometer does."

Me:  "Cool.  Okay, here's one for you:  Why do people get oil changes?"

Kid:  "Um, because of the brakes?"

P.J.:  *X sound from Family Feud*  "Try again.  I've explained to you about how an engine works, right?"

Kid:  "Ohhhh yeah, so the pistons won't get gunky and stop."

Me:  "Yep, you don't want to be paying for an engine rebuild.  It's important.  Okay, if your car overheats, what do you do?"

Kid:  "You don't unscrew the radiator cap and get covered in fucking burns and lose your face."

Me:  "Bingo!"

Kid:  "Yeah, we're going into the hood tomorrow."

Me:  *spit food across table, die laughing*

Kid:  "Um, I think that wasn't, perhaps, the best phrasing I could have chosen.  I mean we're looking under the hood of the car tomorrow, and learning all that shit."

P.J.:  "Yeah, that's, um, better."  *laughing*

Me:  "Because I was like, 'Why the fuck are they driving all over the county?  And why would he put it like that?'"

Kid:  "I can't even believe I said that.  Jesus Christ.  I'm tired."

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