Getting the Most Status from Your Ability to Drive

A huge LanyardSociety can be pretty backwards.

For example, look at cars. As a 16 year old, you are not trusted to check a little box on a paper ballot and mail it in. I guess people are worried that you’ll stab yourself with the pen and get ink in your blood. You are, however, trusted to control a multi-ton hunk of metal hurdling forwards at speeds faster than any animal can run. With that, people are convinced that you’ll be so busy crashing into things it will be virtually impossible to stab yourself with a pen and get ink in your blood.

Now, I know that above paragraph is graphic and morbid, but let’s face it: we love it that way! So what if you can’t vote—you can drive, man.

Look at it from the teen perspective. Voting’s cool, but it’s really hard to show that off on a daily basis. Are you going to tape a ballot to your arm? Maybe you’ll mention it every time you talk? Get a permanent tattoo on your cheek that says “Dude, I voted?” Not at all.

When you drive, though, you can find ways to constantly remind everyone that, well, you drive, which is considered pretty darn cool. Sure, that can be accomplished just by having a cool car, but sometimes that’s out of your control. I mean, if your parents were willing to pay for most of that Stretch Hummer*, then it didn’t really matter how badly you wanted that used Honda.

*Many of you are probably thinking that no parents would pay for a Stretch Hummer for their newly licensed teen driver. You are all wrong. If the parents have enough money, this is probably their first choice; who’s going to ever get close enough to a Stretch Hummer to cause an accident?

Taking that into consideration, here is how to get the most out of that cool ‘licensed’ status, by changing things you can control.

Show Off Your Keys

Car keys are terrific. Even when you are not in a car, they remind everyone that you have a car to drive, and a driver’s license. They get this message across so effectively that I predict in 10 years ‘cool’ teens will walk around wearing car keys as earrings.

Even now, you can show you have car keys with the helpful tool of something called a lanyard. Basically, it’s a necklace for keys. Obviously, then, wearing it around your neck is a nerdy thing to do; that’s what it was invented for.

Instead, you should keep your keys in your pocket and let the lanyard dangle down your leg like a large blood-sucking leech attached to your thigh. The bigger the lanyard, the better. It needs to be unmistakable that you have car keys. Ideally, you can just buy a 50-yard length of ribbon and create your own massive lanyard that often accidentally causes those walking behind you to trip.

Drive Without Care

If you drive in your neighborhood, or at your school parking lot, you know that how you drive says just as much about you as what you drive. So, just like being cool in other aspects of life, it’s all about not caring.

Act as if you don’t care that you almost crashed into that lamp pole. So what, if you just ran over the parking barrier. Who cares that your car just went up on two wheels? Not you.

Just be careful to never sacrifice your safety, because going to the hospital hasn’t been cool since the 00’s.

Give Rides

If you give people a ride in your car, it does two things. First of all, the people you give rides to will forever remember that you have a car and are thus cooler than the riders. Secondly, it gives you an ability to directly mention that you have a car and a license in front of everyone around you. I’ve actually witnessed conversations just like this, and I’m sure you have as well:

[At the end of an event, like a soccer practice or orchestra concert]
Cool Guy (CG) with a Car: Hey, does anybody need a ride?
Everyone else: Nope. No. No thanks.
CG: Okay. Because, you know, I can give rides if anyone needs one.
Guy 1: Dude, I’m fine. I can walk home.
CG: But, um, it’s nice outside. There’s no rain or anything. Are you sure you want to risk a sunburn? ‘Cause I can give you a ride.
Guy 1: What? I’m fine, man.
Guy 2: I think my mom’s just coming a little late.
CG: Well, I can give you a ride.
Guy 2: No, I mean-
CG: I could, like, drive to your mom on the road, and you could switch cars.
Guy 2: No thanks.
CG: Does anyone need a ride? Does anyone want a ride?
Guy 3: Man, I’m hungry.
CG: What? You want to go drive and get food somewhere far away? I can give you a ride, you know.
Guy 3: Naw, I’ll wait ‘til I get home.
CG: Well, I can give you a ride home, too.
Guy 3: Dude, my car is parked at the end of the lot.
CG: Oh. Hey, but my car is right in front. Do you want a ride to your car?
Guy 3: No.
CG: How about you just sit in my car for a few seconds?
Guy 3: No thanks.
CG: Well, wanna take a rain check? I’ll give you a ride some other time.
Guy 3: No. Leave me alone, man.
CG: That’s it! I’m disgusted! I’m going to go catch a squirrel and force it to accept a ride!

If you don’t yet have your license, or a car, then I’m sure these things are great annoyances in your daily life. Amazingly, though, they will instantly become your favorite pastimes once you gain the ability to drive. Until then, maybe you ought to start carrying your post office key on a lanyard with you everywhere.

Suppose you can’t drive, yet, though. In that case, maybe you’ll improve your cool status by making fix to those grammar problems you done have. “3 Reasons Why Me and You Need To Talk–In a Dark Alley,” should shape you right up.

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