Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Empty Back Seat

I can tell a lot about you by your car.

I'm not talking about making a snap judgment about your income, your environmental awareness, or your cleanliness.

I mean, I can tell by checking your back seat. Do you have any car seats? Are there any crumbled up McDonald's bags and various Happy Meal toys scattered on the floor? Does your side panel have the tell-tale scratch the entire length of the car at the exact height of a bicycle's handlebars?

I see your car and I feel a mix of emotions. On the one hand, I find a bit of a kinship with this person. Someone who knows what it's like to try to keep a vehicle in good condition but, contrary to her best efforts, her kids have other plans. Someone who, in a former life, cursed clutter and mess and swore she'd never let her own children behave that way (*cough*). Someone who has finally resigned herself to the fact that it's pointless, nay USELESS, to own anything of any value anymore - at least for the next 18 years or so.

And, I also see that other person's car. The one with the clean car mats. The one that doesn't have a LATCH system in the back seat (if there even IS a back seat). The one without any bumper stickers or window clings or school pick-up-line tags. This is a car that belongs to someone who doesn't have to keep a pencil sharpener in the glove box for last-minute forgotten homework. It belongs to someone who can feel safe leaving coins in the center console, inches from the CD player.

I want to own that car.

Someday I will.

But by then I'll probably need a liftgate for my walker.

Texan Mama


Ellen Stewart (aka Ellie/El/e/Mrs. Seaman) said...

I own a 2003 Civic coupe. It's red. It's a standard. I like it still. Best, it's paid for.

The only sticker I have ever put on my car reads, "Bring your own bag." Some times I wonder if I'm less of a mom because I don't have an LSU sticker or similar on my vehicle.

I wasn't asked to be a carpool mom until Mac was in HS. (Different car that year.) His friends were much more used to Mercedes that Dodge Neons, but they were gracious at the lack of plush.

My car needs to be vacuumed. And like my friend Brenda likes to tease, I "wash it twice a year whether it needs it or not." Sometimes Brad sneaks it out for a wash...

GunDiva said...

It doesn't get any better once they're out of the house, because you will eventually drive them somewhere or they'll borrow your car to go somewhere and you'll get it back looking like it did when they lived at home. Case in point: Digger moved to Wyoming almost a year ago, he came home yesterday and we went to lunch. He was in my car - at most - ten minutes. When I got home last night I realized that he'd left two CD cases in the seat, a CD in the stereo and his Mountain Dew in the cup holder. Really?! Ten minutes!

Lex the mom said...

Reading the title of your post made me instantly jump about 12 years into the future & freak out a little. GAH! I dread the day when I look into the rear view & there is no child smiling back at me. Sad because I know that it will seem like a snap shot once it gets here. I don't mind having my backseat full, not now.

The husband is a clean car freak. If you don't know one, then you are lucky. The car is clean, the van, however...

Gigi said...

Ha - my car would fool you! I haven't had little people in my car for a while now and it's pretty much just me in that car - so I really can't understand how it gets so junked up.

That Janie Girl said...

Trash in your car? You HAVE to be kidding. People should be cleaner than that.

Unless, of course, you deliver breakfast for a living and haul all ages of people around, big and little, and practically live in that sucker.

I wouldn't know anything about that, being the oilfield trash I am.

Not one thing.

Jennifer said...

David completely cleaned out the car before we left for West Texas. Before we had even pulled out of the driveway the back was completely trashed. I'm not even sure how they manage to do it.

And I'm happy to know that I'm not the only person that checks other people's cars for seats in the back.

Anna See said...

ha ha! i got my car cleaned to the tune of $15 bucks yesterday, then picked up 6 wet kids at church day camp out in the boonies on a gravel road. bad timing, i would say.

Michele R said...

My car would fool the investigator in you. And that is because I have an OCD Hubs who is a clean freak. We just finished a 3 week cross country road trip and at every gasoline stop he'd tell us all to get any trash out of the car. By trash we're talking about maybe 3 granola bar wrappers and 3 water bottles or Gatorade bottles.
If he washes my car and I have 2 magazines, and a couple of papers in my side pocket and some coins on the backseat he acts like it is all dirty. Yeah, pretty annoying.
On the bright side, our cars look amazingly new after years.

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Jeanine Byers Hoag said...

LOLOL! Boy, that was funny at the end there. And boy, can I relate.

But I feel that way about my home, too. I remember fondly the days of single apartment living, when everything was in good condition and the apt. stayed as clean as I made it.

Sigh. The good old days!

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