I may have mentioned that I drive the most stereotypical car for old people, which to be fair I did inherit it from my grandmother. There are a few side effects of this vehicle, other than accidentally and unofficially earning my boating license simply by driving my car. The first and most obvious is that everyone assumes I’m old. This, in itself, shouldn’t be a problem, except that once they assume I’m old they take it to heart. I’ve had drivers pass me, tailgate me, and honk at me when I am driving ten miles over the speed limit. They somehow see me, look at their speedometer, and something in their head says “Well, my speedometer must be broken because that person is old.”
This is clearly the faulty piece of evidence.
Interestingly the same “old-person” perception works in my favor, if only on occasion. Though old-people cars may piss everyone else off, but it makes me invisible to policemen. I don’t make a habit of breaking traffic laws, but I can certainly push the line on the speed limit in most areas, and especially in suburban ones (keep in mind this doesn’t work in more urban areas or college towns, where it’s more likely for a younger person to drive a Buick.) I have to put this down to boredom: it’s more fun to pull over the 40 to 50 year old businessman in his Mustang, and less entertaining to bust what you assume is a half-blind old lady.
Honestly though, which one is a greater service to society?*
While I enjoy and/or despise the reactions to my vehicle, they aren’t what concern me the most. I should mention at this point that my car is the color of a moss covered stone after it has rained, or, you know, the pavement. With all the weather the Midwest tends to have, it’s kind of amazing that I’m still alive.
*= I kid you not, the headline that goes along with this photo is “73-Year-Old Woman Gets Popped For Driving Drunk, Hitting Boy, And Crashing Into Food Truck On The Way To AA Meeting.” Please click on the picture and see for yourself. I didn’t even plan that.