My well-meaning but at times cruel friends occasionally gang up on me and try to match-make, usually with disastrous results. They knowing my love of cars, it is usually with men who do not share my passion for them, or at least not in the same way. I had forgotten, or best erased these from my memory, but the weekend Prestige Motoring article by John Connolly (Test for quest) brought it all back.
The last of these disasters happened couple of months back. The said individual had been on the radar for months, and I resisted as long as I could. The number of made-up excuses I had come up with would have made Baron Munchhausen proud. Finally, I was cornered, and like a wounded animal, I went on the attack. But nothing worked: the qualities of the knight in the shining armour were listed to me again and again. Just to get some peace, I relented and agreed to coffee. What could possibly go wrong? Plenty, as it seems. My offer of meeting for coffee, preferably somewhere noisy and close to car parking, was declined, and a romantic evening meal with the knight and his steed was the only option. Worn down, I agreed, just to get the whole thing done and over with.
The knight arrived. 10-15 minutes of small talk later, I was ready to spend the night locked in a room full of tarantulas. This was a true child of the Gordon Gekko era. Braces and belt, to ensure that his pants would never fall down. OMG, do people still dress like this? The most interesting book, the one that changed his life, was Who Moved My Cheese. His line was: “I always give 113%.” The glazed look on my face gave even him the message and we set off. My offer to drive was firmly rejected, and we embarked on his trusty steed, a 2013 Lexus. I know it was 2013, because he told me, a number of times. I live on the lower North Shore, so trips to the city are over before you know it. This one lasted a lifetime. Firstly, I was informed that the best way to save fuel is to set the dash screen to your fuel usage. That way, you get 113% fuel efficiency. The constant braking to ensure this 113% percent was crushing my outfit, and the drivers behind us were collecting money to have this individual removed from the roads, perhaps even from the human race. They would have to beat me to it. The conversation in the car was one-way, with him teaching me how to drive better and how to get the best fuel efficiency. Moving in slow motion, we reached the toll gates, where he stopped and explained to me, to be sure 113% that the toll was registered, it is best to stop and count to 20 and then proceed. For some strange reason, the motorists behind us did not share his beliefs. We reached the corner of Grosvenor and Harrington streets and I reached for the door handle and got out. Not a word was spoken. I hailed the first taxi and asked him to take me home. Upon reaching the safety of my unit, I poured a glass of champagne and called my so-called friends. The torrent of abuse lasted for 10 minutes. After that I asked them to stay out of my life until I contacted them.
We are still friends, and during the Christmas break we caught up. I am told that my knight in shining armour was astounded at my reacting in such a way, because my friends had apparently told him that I liked cars.