Miss Wheeler
September 29, 2005


I know the process involved, and in an emergency, I could drive a car with a manual transmission. But right now, given the choice, I'm all about the automatic. I think I have a mental block about driving stick. My head keeps telling me I can't do it, and there's too much to remember. I can't work the clutch, shift, give the car gas, AND pay attention to other people on the road! Impossible! My last experience driving a stick, despite the boyfriend being very calm and patient, ended with me in tears. I haven't attempted to drive his car since.

It wouldn't really be an issue, except for the commuting thing. I end up driving, due to my lack of manual transmission comprehension. I don't mind driving. But as traffic has become worse over the past few weeks, the amount of four-letter words escaping my lips has also increased.

I try to be very conscious of what I'm doing when I'm driving. I won't get in front of you or merge without my blinker on, I don't make u-turns in the middle of an expressway, I try my best not to tailgate, and I won't cut across 4 lanes of traffic because, OH MY GOD THERE'S MY EXIT. But if one of my fellow commuters does any of the above, I will swear like a sailor and give them their own special nickname using some or all of the expletives I can think of. But once I've done that, I'm usually fine. It's pretty much out of my system. Despite explaining this to the boyfriend, he's still afraid I'm going to have a heart-attack.

So I can't figure out which is worse. Aggravation while driving my own car, or emotionally freaking out from trying to drive a stick. And I know I should learn how regardless of my commuting situation, but after 12 years of automatic-only driving, this old dog is having trouble learning a new trick.

Does anyone know if they make "Manual Transmissions for Dummies"? I think I might need a copy.



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