Several weeks ago my car had a near-death experience after months of questionable behavior and thousands of dollars in repairs and maintenance. (Three volkswagens later, I have come to recognize a certain pattern involving the number 70,000 miles. I'll give you a hint: everything falls apart.)
Overnight, much like with my (silver with phat rims!) Jetta and (white with cow-print cover seats!) convertible Cabriolet, lemon trees began growing from the dashboard of my Passat Wagon.
Long story short (no, really. I swear) after finding myself hysterical and stranded on the mean streets of Beverly Hills, 90211, c/o engine issues, I made a promise to myself to get me a new car within the year! Within the year, by Joe!
That night, after having my car towed to our local mechanic, (who is amazing, LA drivers. Highly recommended) Hal and I spent the evening browser-window shopping for new cars. Our criteria?
A. A bigger car with an extra row of seats just in case we plan on maybe having a baby in the next year or so.
B. A car that won't make me feel like a total vagina.
C. A car that isn't a squillion dollars.
"Why don't you just get a minivan? Who cares?"
"NO! I can't get a minivan! I can't and I won't! I'd rather drive the kids around in a bike with two sidecars!"
And I wasn't joking.
The minivan talk was nothing new for us. My car has experienced some major angst in the last year and I'm totally over dishing out hundreds of dollars a month of maintenance. Might as well be a car payment! Am I right? Am I right?
I recently tweeted about minivans. Specifically:
"I think the time has come for a minivan. Hold me."
The responses ranged from "Do it! Minivans are awesome!" to "DON'T YOU DARE, YOU WHORE" with a few "Soccer mom" digs and a dozen links to the Swagger Wagon spots Toyota did for their new Sienna. (Remember 'Yo GGC Raps from back in the day? Heyyyyaaaa!)
Mostly people asked, "...but why?"
The minivan to me has always represented all that is over and done with in terms of sexuality and "fun" ... Head-turner, minivans are not, let's be honest and although becoming obsolete is indefinite, nothing says "the selfless endeavors of the sacrificial woman" or, if you will, "mom jeans, womp-womp" like a minivan full of babes.
...I mean, my MOTHER drove a minivan! For a thousand years, actually. (She drove a 90' Toyota Previa until last year when she finally bought a
Prius, obviously. Duh. She owns composting worms new car.) But ME? Sha! I'm so sure! I would NEVER allow for the same khakification...
Dunt, dunt, duuuuuuuunt!
I'm not going to lie. I'm image-conscious. I care what I'm wearing. How I might be perceived by friends, strangers. Hell, I live in Hollywood! Where people share studio apartments so they can afford to drive Ferraris down Sunset Blvd on the weekends, windows rolled, Joop cologne blasting...
And even though Hal and I drive a green station wagon (with a George Orwell quotation/Moveon.org bumper stickers) and a heavily dented Honda Civic (with gang signs carved in its steering wheel leftover from when Hal was carjacked in front of Paramount studios on Archer's 2nd birthday) respectively, we still adhere to the Los Angeles code of perception when and where we can.
Okay, so I do. Hal could give two fucks.
Anyway. Back on track: It wasn't until I did some serious thinking that I had an epiphany:
All these years I've wanted so desperately to rebel against "motherhood" in all its Khaki-panted, Zales #1 Mom pendent wearing ways. Motherhood with its minivans and its "get whites whiter!" commercials and its PTAs... which is just so... obvious, you know? I mean... how many new mothers want to rebel against the cliches of parenthood? The need for rebellion against what it means to be "mom" might just be a bigger cliche than motherhood itself!
Rebellion. Sweet, adorable little rebellion. Rebellion is the obvious choice... At least it was when I was twenty-three.
These days I'm starting to realize that the ultimate rebellion is REBELLING against ones own rebellion! In other words: IRONY.
My lightbulb moment lead me to self-suggest that the minivan may very well become the ironic mustache of automobiles as far as moms are concerned and why not jump on the bandwagon before it's even been built! Cutting edge!
Because, let's be real, people. The minivan's no Maserati but it's certainly cheaper and a whole lot more practical. I mean... the side doors open FOR YOU. I don't know about you but I'd gladly strap on a pair of high-waisted khaks to experience that kind of craziness.
At least that's what I keep telling myself in between admitting the following truths:
1. I'm almost thirty. I'm no longer "too young" for a minivan.
2. I do fancy my whites whiter, which means, in a way, I kind of am that mom.
3. I'm confident enough in my almost-thirty-mother-of-two-maybe-more-someday skin to rock the shit out of a minivan.
Not that we're committing to a minivan just yet. But considering the purchase of one? Indeed we are.
I mean... at the end of the day, I am a mom.
WTF-ever if I look like one sometimes.