It's no secret that he hates driving my car. It's the newest in the Lee fleet. It's also got the thickest crust of goldfish guts, a latte spatter pattern that would stump Dexter, and a permanent layer of BabyChuck sole-patterned mud on the back of the driver's seat. And usually a pair of underwear in there somewhere.
He can usually stomach all of that. But when he puts her in drive and we go:
He's annoyed. Always.
"Why is the parking brake on? We are literally on flat ground. You're being ridiculous."
Let me brake (ha) it down for you. Because things dawned on me today as I absentmindedly set that sucker at work again. Just like I did yesterday. And the day before that. And the day before that.
Long, long ago, when I was a wee child, my mom loaded me up and carted me off to the babysitter before she went off to work. EARLY. Like....EARLY, early. Like, so early I went back to bed at the babysitter's house. And this was summertime, and I had one of those plastic kiddie pools because we didn't have air conditioning and it's hot as Satan's vagina here (still), and when we got in the car she noticed it was still out and full from the day before.
Not wanting it sitting there all day smashing the grass or whatever, she got out of the car, dumped the water out, and dragged it over to rest against the garage. This was when the car began rolling backward down the driveway, across the street, through the fence, and into the field opposite our house. With me in it.
Now. I will tell you that from this moment forward, I haven't had a particular likening to carnival rides. But I particularly began being a little OCD about setting the parking brake in a car way before I ever started driving one. Especially if I was in it. Because just barely being able to see out the windows is just about the most traumatic view of all. The world whizzing by. Your mom, through the windshield, in a dead sprint, but really, it's mom speed...so there's no way she's gonna catch you and you know it. And you want to close your eyes but you just can't.
I'm sure it was all very very slow-mo. But at the time? It felt very much like this:
Was it life changing trauma? No. I mean...I tripped and fell right behind the riding mower once and she almost backed over me with it. That was pretty effing scary. I have a healthy respect for the John Deere and I keep my distance when it fires up. I also absolutely do not let my kids play out in the yard while Hubs is mowing. ToddlerBandit likes to help, but he rides WITH him and wears ear protection.
But this? I mean, so what if I have a compulsive habit of setting the parking brake. All the time. On flat ground. Wouldn't you? What childhood traumas have carried over into habits that annoy your significant other?