Open Letter To College Freshmen Driving SUVs / by Dan Mayer

Okay, look. Let's be honest with each other about something. A few things, actually.

First off, we know your old man bought you that fucking SUV. Do you know why he bought it for you? It's because he knows that you drive like a one-eyed jackal with compromised impulse control. He bought you that battleship because the poor bastard loves you and wants you to be the person who survives the accident that you will inevitably cause. Isn't that sweet of him? Your dad wants you live! At any cost. I think how much he must love you every time I watch you make a right turn into traffic without looking to the right first. You know who's off to the right? Pedestrians. With babies.

There's something else I think we can safely assume. You wanted that SUV because you imagined yourself driving your posse of attractive friends from party to party on Friday nights, and to the beach for a bonfire after mid-terms. Did any of that happen? It mostly seems like you're by yourself in the SUV when I see you. Just wanted to point that out.

Also, we should maybe have a quick chat about parallel parking. People do it every day. They back in, crank the wheel... you remember driver's ed, right? No? Well, that might explain why watching you attempt to parallel park is like watching a squadron of liquored up carnival freaks trying to castrate an Alaskan grizzly. I shouldn't say that. The life of a carny is a noble life, and your attempt to parallel park your Armada isn't at all noble, it's just sad. But at least your dad can rest assured that despite the damage you might do to nearby automobiles and structures before zooming away in embarrassment, your physical person will remain unharmed.

Finally, I think we can all appreciate the fact that when the zombie outbreak hits our shores and society collapses, the Armada will be a great place for you to hole up, lock the doors, and live out however many days it takes for you to expire from hunger and thirst. You see, the person who normally makes your veggie wrap will have become a zombie, which, given that you can't even make your own toast, will leave you in quite a pickle. You won't be able to drive to the nearest outpost of surviving humans either, as your Armada only gets 3.9 miles to the gallon, and the gas station attendants who normally pump your gas will be, yes, more goddamned zombies. I can only imagine your frustration.

"Dude, this guy is so... I don't even know? Bitter?" I can hear you asking, with that charming upward interrogative inflection that makes you sound like someone a little disoriented from a shovel-blow to the skull.

Why am I so bitter? Thanks for asking. It's because when I am a senior citizen with my own personal collection of serious health problems, it will very likely be you or one of your ghastly ilk that has graduated from Berkeley, gone to med school, and become the medical professional who is giving me a GI exam. I am bitter because my guess is that you will control that proct-o-scope much the way you drive your SUV. Poorly, and without regard for the lives of the people around you.