Drivers beware, there’s a new short fused teenager in town. She is able to drive one handed while “flipping you the bird.” If you cut her off or try to steal her parking space, be afraid… be very afraid. She is a force to be reckoned with. Check your rearview mirror; you may see her raging form gesturing you from behind the steering wheel. Should I be concerned about her actions or is this just the early stages of PMS?
We welcome our children’s birth with open arms. They are harmless, innocent and totally dependent on us. As they grow they worship us and listen, for the most part, to what we say. Then one day we are awakened to see a semi-human form beside our bed that has morphed overnight into an argumentative, independent alien being. The mechanical drone of the phrase “Mom can I borrow the car?” rolls out of their mouth like a robot on Prozac.
And there it begins. The years spent teaching them morals, values and most importantly respectable road etiquette, are a reflection on our parenting skills. I thought I had properly instilled all of these in my daughter, until she treated me to a crazed scene reminiscent of the Exorcist. Her head spun around and we’ll probably never be able to get the pea soup out of the glove compartment.
My husband and I were enjoying another bumper to bumper rush hour, trying not to elevate our blood pressure as we inched our way to the car dealership. I glanced over at my spouse who normally drives as if he is in the cartoon “Speed Racer”, knowing this traffic must be irritating him. Our daughter, Ashleigh, was following behind us so that we could drop her car for service. My husband and I were chatting about how time has passed so quickly, unlike the traffic parked next to us. We were relieved when we finally arrived at our exit.
Reaching the top of the ramp, I noticed a city bus pulled over to the side of the road, dropping off passengers. We proceeded through the light just as the driver decided to pull the bus out into traffic behind us without signaling, cutting off my daughter’s progress. Bad move on his part. Suddenly I heard a wimpy, annoying car horn, bleat out a noise that reminded me of a sheep being branded.
I knew before I even looked in the side mirror, that it was Ashleigh’s car. Knowing my daughter and her propensity for road rage, I realized that was going to be the tamest part of her response. My husband obviously had the same thoughts streaking through his mind as I caught him glancing in the rearview mirror.
We saw her sunroof slid open. To my horror, her arm reached skyward like in an old horror movie where the dead reach up from the grave and her middle finger was extended as if in salute. Last I knew, that particular hand signal was not taught in Drivers Ed. I felt a sudden rush of embarrassment wash over me like a nasty hot flash. Her eyes were scowling and was that steam hissing out of her ears? I never knew how to read lips until I saw words that should be censored forming on her rapidly moving mouth. The bus driver continued on completely oblivious, which only infuriated her more.
They appear to be part of your gene pool, but obviously sometimes a small chromosome goes awry. I was waiting for my husband’s reaction, when I noticed a smirk on his face that reminded me of when I catch him with his hand in the cookie jar right before bed.
“Can you believe that?” I muttered still in shock.
“That’s my girl,” he said beaming with pride.
The apple does not fall far from the tree, I thought shaking my head. All my years of parenting flew right out her sunroof that day. Fasten your seat belts. For all of you drivers out there, beware, hell hath no fury like my daughter’s scorn.