Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The time I stole a car

In my early teens, my mother drove a 1977 Pontiac Acadian in bright pumpkin orange. It had two doors, vinyl seats, standard transmission, and an AM radio. I loved that car. It was hideous and wonderful all at once.

When I was learning to drive, I didn't learn on the Acadian. It was a stick shift and much too complicated for me, considering I was having enough trouble learning to push the gas not the brake (or vice versa) and to trying to stay in my own lane at all times (or any time, really). I learned to drive our giant van instead. But I longed to drive the Acadian. A van is not cool. An orange car? Very cool.

Photo stolen from here.

After I got my licence, I started a few lessons with my mom in the Acadian. These lessons consisted of stalling repeatedly in a parking lot while my mom alternately gasped, cursed, and clutched the side of the door. After a while, I got better, but not so much my mother would agree to let me drive.

Thanksgiving weekend came and my family was leaving without me. I was scheduled to work, so got to stay behind. I asked if I could drive Mom's car while they were gone and was told an unequivocal no. I pouted, but acquiesced. Well, until they pulled out of the driveway, that is.

It was then I grabbed Mom's extra car keys and hit the open road. I picked up my friend Rae and she taught me the finer points of driving standard. By the end of it, I was an old pro. I spent the weekend zipping back and forth loving every moment of my freedom.

When my parents got home, the car was back in it's place as though it had never left. Yet, Mom immediately blasted me for driving without her permission. I was flabbergasted. How did she know? How do mother's always know?

I found out later that my neighbour had been told to watch and see what I did. He reported directly to my mother that I had taken her car. Busted.


  1. was that my dad? or the asian dude?

  2. I LOVE the description of your mom teaching you to drive. I can just picture it! I miss that car..didn't your Grandma have it for awhile or was that a different orange car?

  3. Amanda: It was your dad. I couldn't stay mad at him though.

    Kris: It was Grandma's car. Mom got it from her.

  4. Funny it never looked as good as that picture. I hated that car if I ever had to drive it. There was no room to work the pedals. Hence the ripped out gearshift. I knew about Graeme stealing the van from you but not about this. I missed all the fun.

  5. That would have been the coolest! Where have all the orange Acadians gone?

  6. I love your childhood stories! They are often both funny and surprising.

  7. Dad! How did you miss that? I was in SO much trouble. Also, Mom loved that you couldn't use her car. I think she cried when you tore off the gear shift.

    Queen D: My dad killed them.

    NQA: Just like me!!!


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