As you can see, I've officially joined the "ugly driver's license photo" club. I dropped out of driver's ed and went for it. Ok, dropped out isn't exactly accurate; I hadn't gotten the official blessing of my driver's coach to take said test, but given my new job (!) hmm.. that does kinda look like a butt. what I mean is - I got a great job offer and accepted. I start on the 14th.
Given a deadline for my new commute, I threw caution to the wind (and drove 20 hours in a week). I aced all the tests and have been driving pretty much non-stop since then.
Did I mention I stopped on the way home from the test and bought my dream car? I apologize in advanced to those who have a low "yuppie behavior" tolerance. My first ever, "just for me" car is a light blue Toyota Prius with too many gadgets to mention. We're calling it my "I had to wait this long, so it's gonna be special" car and not the "mid life crisis" car. I'm currently looking at name suggestions. If you have one for her, let me know.
I still feel the need to defend my actions, re: 20 decades sans license. I never really was scared of driving. The reasons are too complicated to give in a sound bite. If you aren't interested in my psyche, feel free to stop reading now. There will be no last minute outing.
My first conscious reason not to drive was at 16; I was told I'd have to pay for driver's ed. There always seemed a better use for my paycheck than another stupid class. I had my chauffeur by then; Brian and I always wanted to be together, so why would I want to driver to work alone, when we could be together?
When we went to college, school was my priority. I could take a bus or walk the mile to the university. Computer classes had to be a priority over driver's ed. Later, when I got my first job, we simply picked an apartment near the job. If I thought taking driver's ed during college was hard, doing it while working 40 hours/week was impossible.
I did get a permit once in my 20s. Within 24 hours, I got pulled over by the police (I wanted to play "designated driver" before ever driving in the dark) and went off the road trying to merge onto the interstate. After that, the license didn't seem that important.
At some point in my early 20's, being a non-driver became part of my identity. I mean, any idiot can get a license and go shopping. But to be able to travel around the world.. to plan ahead for shopping needs.. to commute.. without the card most adults take for granted? That takes something special.
Because I didn't drive, I had lots of extra time to run a couple non-profits, save some lives, organize events. That 5/10/15 hours others spend weekly commuting to work, I was able to effect change.
Eventually, the biggest reason to stay as I was is simple - I hate being told what to do and I extra hate smug people who assume they know what's best for me. I hated that they couldn't see the value in my life and decided to stay that way out of spite. Screw them!
When I lost my job, I knew the jig was up. So, I'm now stuck with an ugly picture of myself, a "just for me" Kitt car, and new adventures to come.
This Phoenix is arisen.
ps - During this experience, I have been fascinated with the bi "tie in." The majority of us take the easy road, accept the implied label, allow people to accept us for who they think we are, and stop fighting to be seen as a "bisexual". It's so much easier to go with the flow. My question for the day - does our sexuality help us do the unpopular? Or does our willingness to be unpopular enable us to hold true to our identity?
pps - Screw those who stopped reading half way ;)