Creamer was on special today. And I could stock up on it because I have a minivan. You think driving in a navy blue minivan says that I gave up. You don't see what I see, me zipping through our town's roundabouts knowing I'm in a castle on wheels. So, cast your eyes of envy my way because I know what owning a minivan means: room.
Car manufacturers may think they'll fool new parents into showing up at car dealerships with their commercials of rap songs, heavy metal songs, images of hipster couples with their hipster babies on their hipster hips. Or the promise of kids subdued into open mouthed states of sedation with a drop-down DVD player six inches in front of their faces. But I never needed any of that: I fell in love with the minivan with the first time I drove home from the grocery store in it.
I didn't need to be brainwashed into thinking that cranking Alex Clare at barely legal ear-bleeding decibels as I whizzed through cul-de-sacs at carpooling time, that a minivan is the car for me.
And I have no idea who exactly out there thinks they don't need a minivan. Who needs to be convinced? Do the ad teams believe that the words “swagger wagon” will wipe our minds free of the minivan’s other names, like dumpster on wheels, mommy mobile, soccer mom wagon, Eberhard eraser, rummage sale raider? I've heard them all, and they don't touch me.
Why does the minivan need to be cool? Who drives one to be cool? Not me. I know what it’s for and that’s exactly why I have it. No one shows up at the car dealership, and when the salesman one handedly and with a wink, slides away the stow-n-go backseat, thinks, Ooooh, hooo hooo! Saturday night sin bin! No, I think of all the Gatorade that goes on special that I can pack in there!
You could drop in a Shelby V-8 engine, rim the car with Pirelli tires, smoke the windows, apply an alien family decal, clean up the cheerios and juice boxes, you could all of that, and it still wouldn't change why I buy a minivan.
As I said, no one buys it to be cool or to deny the wheels of time grinding closer every day. The truth is that minivans are not cool. They are not. What they are is efficient, contriveable, bottomless, mess forgiving. That's why I've been behind the wheel of one for over 15 years.
If you want cool, think back to high school. The coolest people were the ones that didn’t care what other people thought.
You know I'm right. The one with no effs left to give is the one behind the wheel of a minivan.
I don’t have to rap along to Swagger Wagon to pretend that the steering wheel I'm sitting behind is not that of a minivan.
Because I know that it's not our car that makes us. It's us, that make the car. What’s in the seat, makes it hot. And there is no one more on fire than me flipping back my hair, folding down those stow-n-go seats when Gatorade is two packs for $5.99.
And there's no limit of two per customer.
* * *