[DWJ] Re: Lurkers on the List

Elizabeth Parks henx19 at gmail.com
Thu Mar 29 01:17:38 EDT 2007

I actually think that, contrary to popular wisdom, it's easier to
learn on an automatic and then on a stick.  My reasoning behind this
is that once you have an idea of how to drive--one you have begun to
notice the rhythm of the gear change (which you can still feel on an
automatic, unless perhaps it's a really good car where you can't feel
much of anything, which is one of the drawbacks of really good cars, I
think), once you have begun to feel more in control of all the other
elements of driving, it's easier to work in the gear changes than it
is to start out trying to do all of that at once.

My dad started me on a stick when I was fifteen (the birthday that
gave you a learner's permit in Virginia, ten years ago--it's now up to
sixteen, which seemed mature at the time but kind of scary now).  A
week later, some important car part fell out of the car--the
carborator, perhaps?  I can't exactly remember.  I was then demoted to
the family minivan (which, although perhaps not the ideal starter car,
taught me how to park just about anything, just about anywhere),
despite the mechanic saying it wasn't my fault.  Six months or so
later, when I had acquitted myself reasonably, I came back to driving
a stick, and literally dreamed about it for weeks, in minute detail.
I don't know if it was the dream-practice or what, but it was much,
much easier the second attempt.

obDWJ.  um.  Maybe the car wouldn't have broken if I had done a witchy
dance?  Though this predated Deep Secret, I think. . ..


On 3/28/07, Elizabeth G. Holtrop <elizabeth at bouma-holtrop.com> wrote:
> Melissa Proffitt
> >(whose other car was an 11-passenger Ford van, oh yes, but instead of >going
> >around the country preaching I was usually trying not to make >exceptionally
> >wide turns)
> I have the option of learning to drive on an automatic, but it's the family van (7- or 10-passenger, though there are a mere five people in my family) and I don't think I want to learn on that whale of a thing.  I think I'm better off with my aunt's old two-door Toyota, stick shift or no.
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