I came across a fun blog this week (shout out to Amanda at Meet @ the Barre!), and she wrote a hilarious post about a couple of funny driving stories from when she was younger. Seriously funny! Read it if you want a good laugh. Her post reminded me of a couple of funny car stories of my own from back in the day, and I had a good laugh at my younger self as well. Jeremy and I had just talked about one of these… he didn’t know me back then, but he sure gets a kick out of hearing about some of my younger antics.
I consider myself a great driver (now), but I’ll be the first to admit that I made some ridiculous decisions as a new driver. And here I am, sharing a few of the doozies on my blog. Enjoy!
1. Wait, Which Pedal is the Gas? — Let’s just start at the very beginning. My dad taught me to drive when I was 13 (shhh, don’t tell my mom!). The reason is because I had a paper route, and my dad was my informal running coach back then, so we would get our miles in together in the morning while delivering newspapers around the neighborhood. We piled the newspapers in the car and one of us drove the route slowly, while the runner grabbed a few rolls and ran up and down a few driveways and back to the car for more papers. It was early in the morning, and there was no traffic on these neighborhood streets, and we would drive about 10 mph. I’ll never forget the day that my dad decided to let me be the driver. He taught me the basics and the details and the safety precautions, and I got behind the wheel. And just as we were about to take off, I asked (seriously), “Wait, which one is the gas and which one is the brake?” The look on my dad’s face was priceless. He seriously questioned if he was making the biggest mistake by putting me in the driver’s seat. So I laughed and said “just kidding!”, but I wasn’t kidding. And I just guessed and went for it!
2. It Looked Like a Twig — Fast forward now to me actually being a legal driver. I was 16 and driving to the mall with my boyfriend. We must have just had a huge wind storm the night before because there were tree branches scattered sporadically around the yards and streets. So there I am, driving along and there is a little twig laying across the road. No biggie. I drive over it without a second thought. It made the loudest crunch, but barely slowed me down. My boyfriend has the most bewildered look on his face and asks me why I didn’t slow down or drive around it. “Oh what, that little twig?!” He is just laughing and laughing at me, and I don’t really understand why… until we get to the mall and get out of the car and I see the practically full size tree that I’ve been dragging across town. Oops!
3. Freeway Freakout — Everyone has their first time driving on the freeway. Cue the awesome scene in Clueless. Classic. Picture me and my friend, two 16-year-old girls, driving around Tacoma WA together one night. Tacoma was the closest “big city” to our town 15 miles away, so we were out of our element. But you didn’t need to get on the freeway to get there, no we had taken the back roads. So when it was time to head home from whatever we were out doing (probably cruising the waterfront!), we accidentally took a wrong turn and found ourselves on the freeway on ramp. The big sign above the lane next to us said “Seattle – I-5 North” and the big sign above our lane said “Portland – I-5 South”, and we started screaming “Oh my god, we’re going to Portland! We’re going to Oregon! Oh my god!!!!”, seriously two girls screaming, just like in Clueless. Who knew that we could just take the next exit in a mile, no we thought we were going to Portland!
4. Who Needs a Map? — Just as everyone has their first time driving on the freeway, everyone also has their first time driving to a concert with no parents. A different girlfriend and I had tickets to our first big concert at the Gorge. (If you haven’t seen a show at the Gorge, you need to. Seriously the best venue. Look it up – The Gorge in George, WA. You’re welcome.) So the Gorge is smack dab in the middle of the state. And we lived on the west side of the state. The concert tickets had driving directions on the back that basically said, “From Spokane, take I-90 west….” and “From Seattle, take I-90 east….” These were days before GPS. And instead of looking at a map, or asking our parents (or anyone else!) for advice, we knew what to do. We had the directions right there: From Seattle, take I-90 east. So we drove to Seattle to start! Haha, Seattle was an hour away and we could have saved a lot of time, but no, we followed the directions we had!
5. Out of Gas, Out of Luck — Running out of gas is dumb. Unless your gauge is broken, or… well, no there really is just no other good reason to run out of gas. Well I’ve done it. And it was dumb. So I was running late (shocker!) to a job interview, and my gas was low. Really low. I knew that I was not going to make it to the location without getting gas first. So I actually pulled in to a gas station. Every single pump was taken. I waited a minute or two (which felt like hours!), and I’m just looking at the clock, and I can’t believe how long these people are taking, and there are so many more people waiting, and oh my god, this is going to take forever, and I’m never going to make it on time… so I decide to just hope for the best and go! Seriously dumb. I get back on the road, without getting any gas, and I literally run out of gas a mile or two down the road. Needless to say, I didn’t get that job!
Ahhh, young tiffany and the amazing driving decisions I made. I hope everyone enjoys their own trips down memory lane as much as I do mine! And with that, I’ll end this post with something I always say… As long as you make one person laugh, it doesn’t matter if that person is yourself! 😉 Happy driving!