We bought a new car last month, after much decision making and concern, Llama and I decided that it would be best for us to buy a new car instead of trying to band-aid our old one. So since it was to be Llama’s main vehicle, I wanted to make sure he got what he liked. So it is sporty, fast and a manual. Which means I am slowly learning how to drive a standard vehicle. Which has been nice. Our dealer said that only 7% of Americans know how to drive a stick shift, which seems extremely low, but also kind of sad, my Dad drove a stick and I always found it fascinating to watch him drive.
I am glad that I am now getting the chance to learn myself. I think it is still important to understand out things work, take them apart, see the gears, work the levers, I am not an engineer or mechanical by most standards, but I can follow directions, I can understand concepts of motion, friction, and how parts work together to make other parts work..
I remember as a kid, watching my Dad take apart our car, sometimes just for an oil change, fix a belt, change filters, clean valves, it was interesting and educational. Now, vehicles are so small, you can’t even work on the engines or have so many computer part that it isn’t a mechanic that works on your car, but a computer technician.
I am however, all for technology too, our new car is a Honda Civic SI Coupe, which fits into the latter definition of cars, you can’t reach anything in the engine, more computer than metal, and I am okay with that.
I do think however, that while we move forward, we as a culture can’t forget how we got here. We need to know what makes our cars go, some things are so autopilot for us that we might just forgot how it all started. So while we go Vroom, Vroom, I tip my hat to the creators of the automobile, who figured out how to make a bunch of small metal go forward. Onward.