Posts Tagged ‘automatic’

Little Red Cortina

Thursday, July 22nd, 2010

This 1978 Ford Cortina resembles the one I nearly totaled. Photo: Charles01, Wikimedia Commons.

What do you get when you mix a Ford Cortina Mark IV manual with a teenaged driver? Near disaster …

Yesterday’s “Save the Manuals” video moved me deeply. It really did. But before we start planning any “Bring Back the Standard” tea parties, allow me play devil’s advocate with this cautionary tale.

My dad’s a car guy, and when it was time for me to learn how to drive sometime near the dawn of the 1980s, he insisted I learn on a standard.

“But Dad,” I protested. “All my friends get to learn on automatics because they’re easier.”

“And what happens when someone has a heart attack, and the only vehicle available to transport them to the hospital is a standard?” he countered. “Do you let them die? Do you?”

So standard it was, and he hauled me out to our Ford Cortina Mark IV for my first lesson. Our family was living in Mandeville, Jamaica at the time … (more…)