Shortly after we found out I was pregnant with Owen, our Honda Civic croaked on us. (Bless its 200,000 mile heart).
Sadly, my green four-door headed to the fuel-efficient crossroads, to party with Bones-Thugs-n-Harmony and wear that fancy spoiler denied in this life.
We poured a little soy sauce on the ground in respect, and then turned to Consumer Reports. We had the usual questions about fuel efficiency, reliability, swagger---all the stuff that matters.
We knew only one thing: We would not get a minivan. We knew we only wanted two kids, and we wanted something that didn't suck up the gas. We wanted something a little cooler, something that set us apart from the Mommy-And-Me set.
So, we bought a Subaru Outback. Because we like to party.
Since we were getting a station wagon, I decided to own it. I tried to get wood paneling. I looked for a Baby-on-Board sign. I even attempted to get it in Family Truckster green.
Alas, none of that came to fruition. Except for the green.
Yet, five years later, we do have a functional car that drives well in the snow.
It also attracts weirdo conversations with hippies in parking lots. They are often wearing faded Gore/Liebermann campaign shirts, and they refer to their cars as "Subies."
I feel like saying, "If you love your Subie so much, why don't you marry it?"
That's what passes for banter in my head most days.
Anyway, with reflection, I can now admit this deep, dark fact: I envy the minivan moms.
Their kids have their own self-contained seats (or better yet, rows.)
My kids are close enough that they routinely pinch each other's cheeks and snatch cars from each other's hands.
They have built in DVD players.
My kids repeatedly hit their heads against the carseat, say "Ow" and laugh hysterically.
Their cars do not smell like pure evil.
After Owen spilled milk in the backseat, I took the car to the car wash. I opened the door, and the attendant gagged a little.
And finally: The minivan is good for lovin'. Fold down seats? Awwww yeah.
The Subaru? Not so much. (Trust me on this).
PS. If you're interested in reading about my tired self, I'm the featured writer on the Write for Charity website.