A License to Drive

SuzyQ joins the ranks of licensed drivers today!  She has successfully jumped through all of the hoops our states places in front of teens, particularly homeschooled teens.  I feel like she’s adequately prepared, but I don’t feel like I’m adequately prepared.  Darling husband is rejoicing that we have another driver in the house to take up taxi duty.  Not so much rejoicing for me.  But that’s a whole other post.

Today I would rather reflect on driver training.  In most states, I would imagine, there is an extensive curriculum for student drivers.  I’m sure parking is a skill that must be mastered in order to pass a driving test.  Back in the dark ages when I took my test, I had to park between the cones on the diving course, both parallel and regular parking-space style.  It takes a while to get the knack for parking.  You need to become comfortable with the size of your car and its turning radius.  So, I guess there must be a whole lot of freshly minted drivers out there just learning the ropes of parking:

Here’s a driver who is unabashedly terrible at parking.  No apologies.  Just leave the truck where it stops.  Because backing into a spot is just too hard to get right.

Now parallel parking is actually challenging.  There’s the pressure of getting it done and getting out of the way so you don’t keep traffic waiting.  Or you could just leave it diagonal.  This is a really wide space, after all:

Oh, so close.  Never mind.  It’s just a handicap spot you’re taking because you were too lazy to straighten out:

No worries here.  I’m sure only Smart cars will arrive looking for a parking space in this lot:

Oh, who cares!

Hold on.  I’m seeing a pattern here.  People who drive pick-ups should be required to take Remedial Parking 101.  In my unscientific observations conducted over the past couple of months, they are by far the worst parking offenders.  And they don’t seem to give a crap.

Yes, we have had our hands full trying to get SuzyQ ready to hit the road on her own.  But thankfully, there have been plenty of teachable moments provided by other drivers to keep her instruction relevant and current:

“No, the white lines are not just a suggestion about how to fit your car in the lot.”

“The blue lines do add a nice pop of color to the parking lot, but that’s not really the point.”

“No, the parking lot is not a good place to express your individualism by parking diagonally in a straight space.”

Disclaimer:  SuzyQ never actually required any of these instructions.  I can only imagine, based on the parking skill level I see demonstrated in the lots in my area, that these issues must be common among drivers here.

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