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Going for a drive?

Nicole Clery | Monday, September 22, 2003

Ah senior, yes – it’s finally here. Bring on the raucous off-campus parties and celebratory outings to Heartland. Bring on the late nights living it up and the even later mornings that result from skipping class. I’m ready and waiting so bring it on. I’ll even drive.

But wait … maybe I should tell you that I’m not 21. Or perhaps that I’m an RA so I don’t have a fake. Maybe I should share with you the fact that I don’t even have a car on-campus. But that’s okay – I’ll just drive your car, if that’s all right with you. Don’t worry, I’ve had my driver’s license for a whole two months so you’re safe with me.

Before you avert your eyes from this little “Inside Column,” thinking you’re in for another rant about underage drinking or drunk driving, stop for a second. While the aforementioned topics deserve to be discussed and rediscussed, I feel it is more important today to note that I, Nicole Lauren Clery, a 20-year-old third-year RA, will not be turning 21 until the Friday of finals week and will have only been in possession of a driver’s license for four and a half months by that time.

Laugh, my friends, but I speak the truth. Laugh even harder, if you must, after I tell you that both of my younger sisters were driving before me. Oh, and get ready to laugh again when I share with you that it took me not one visit, or even two, but three visits to the DMV to pass the stupid driving test. So I forgot to look over both shoulders during every point of the three-point turn. So I ran a few stop signs and slammed on the breaks mid-intersection once I realized what I had done. So I drove directly off of the road during the backing up portion of the test! I tell you, if they had asked me to parallel park at all I would probably be behind bars or something right now.

Still interested in asking me to drive you to the bar on Thursday night?

If so, I urge you to consult with my dear friend and fellow RA, Amanda Garno. She’s sure to regale you with the tale of her near-death experience coming out of the Martin’s parking lot a few weeks ago. All I can say is that novice drivers should never attempt to clear multiple lanes of traffic in one go … lesson learned there/

Thanks to this driving debacle I’ve learned to appreciate the simple pleasures that come from walking or taking the shuttle, everywhere. What do I hope you’ve gained from this “Inside Column?” Aside from the obvious lesson that I’m probably not the best candidate to chauffeur you and your drunken friends around town, I hope that I’ve inspired you to share your time (and your car!) with me so that I can be taught how to drive like a civilized human being! Give me a ring sometime if you’re up to the challenge.