I have a slight beef regarding driving as of late. May I vent? Thank you.
First of all, I don't really enjoy driving my dually truck. As an environmentally-minded gal, I hate it (although, being diesel, it manages to free-base about 22 mpg) but it is a necessity when you have horses and a farm. It is purely a work vehicle and I'd much rather drive the economical Hyundai except that trying to load hay and feed, as well as dogs and the occasional elderly mother, complete with walker, into the back of it can only be compared to trying to squeeze Tommy Lasorda into a speedo.
Sure, you might be able to do it, but it's way too hot for that kind of work. Also, it's nice to keep one car “for town” that doesn't have hay and horse hair ground into the floor mats and corn beginning to sprout in the bed. Not that we ever go “to town.” More like just the feed store.
So if there's one thing I can't understand, it's this: if you don't have livestock or you're not an electrician, or a plumber, why on earth are you driving a Ford Behemoth, anyway? I have a friend who swears she feels safer. Why? Given the rate of deaths by roll-overs, this doesn't make much sense to me. However, come to think of it, I suppose Behemoth-makers could honestly advertise that they can at least guarantee you an open-casket funeral. You'll be dead but your hair will look great.
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The most obnoxious part about driving this enormous truck is trying to park, er, dock. As I circle the Bi-Lo on a Saturday afternoon, I literally have to pass over at least three or four spaces that I cannot squeeze into. It's not the truck's fault, mind you, I think, patting its dashboard -- it's probably retaining fluid -- and it's not that I'm bothered having to park at a distance, but I become a little tired and, frankly, annoyed, when it becomes a different area code, if I want to finish shopping by midnight.
So imagine my delight after wheeling this whale around the parking lot when I see the perfect spot, waiting with open arms, and it's right next to the store. Delighted by this berth, I maneuver the dually into the space only to see the sign: “Reserved for new parents.”
What?! Are you kidding me?
Now listen, obviously I support the Handicapped signs. But a new parent can also be a huge, hulking, father who can swing his infant's car seat on one finger and clearly doesn't need to be this close to the store! I mean, let's be fair then: what about a sign for the rest of us? How about a sign for me that reads: “Reserved for hot and sweaty horse trainer who is now going to be subjected to your screaming kids in the store aisles?” Yes, a little wordy, but you get my point. I just unloaded twenty bales of hay, cleaned stalls, worked three horses, taught two lessons, swept the barn aisle, cleaned tack, and I'll trade that workload any day for unbuckling Missy out of her car seat, thank you very much.
And what about laborers I see, groaning as they pile out of their trucks and vans, in filthy, sweat-stained t-shirts and jeans from digging ditches and picking peaches? Where's their sign? Or off-duty policemen and firemen who have just finished long shifts of wrestling drunk, naked, people into the back of their patrol cars or battling another blaze because Buford decided to burn his trash on a windy day. Where's their sign? And what about farmers? Why aren't there specials spots near the stores for John Deeres? Back hoes?
You get my drift.
I suppose, for me, there are but two solutions. Number one: ditch the truck or, number two, get pregnant. Or maybe put a Clemson cap on one of the terriers and strap her into a car seat. Heck, that's the way I use the carpool lane…