I’m good at lots of things–as long as none of them involve car trouble. Or whistling.

As far as chicks go, I’m pretty tech savvy. I can do the updates on my computer, program my DVR remotely from my phone (when my FiOS is working… sigh…), hook up my own stereo equipment (usually), and when my Apple TV stopped syncing with my computer, I reset my router and restored all of the settings to my wireless network all on my own.

Which is why I feel like a moron when I run into situations that a monkey can handle but I can’t.

Like when anything goes wrong with my car. Seriously, I’m pretty sure Rosie could be trained to jumpstart a car easier than I could. (Although I mastered that not pooping on the rug thing WAY easier than she did, so I can still feel superior about that).

And unfortunately, Wednesday night was one of those nights when my car needed a jumpstart.

Which meant that it was time to call my dad.


At my age.

I called my dad to come jumpstart my car.

Never mind what age that is, just trust me that I’m at an age that makes that pathetic.

Luckily, my father loves me, because instead of telling me to call AAA (in which case I would still be waiting because I have no idea why I pay for a service that takes longer than the FiOS repair people to come help me), or reminding me that I have a set of jumper cables that he put in my trunk and that he’s taught me how to use them on each of the prior 72,896 occasions that I’ve accidentally left a light on in my car, he came over to help with his set of extra-long jumper cables and a car battery charger.

And he didn’t even mock me when it took a few minutes to remember where the hood release thingy was. Or when I opened the trunk, the gas tank, and all of the windows in my attempt to find the hood release.

Then he patiently explained (for the 72,897th time) how to hook up jumper cables. Not wanting to be embarrassed the next time this happened, I paid close attention.

Then promptly forgot everything he had just said. Is it red-to-red? Or red-to-black? And which car do you hook up first? And do you want the working car running while you hook up the cables?

Okay, I’m PRETTY sure it’s red-to-red and black-to-black, like when you’re plugging in stereo cables. But the rest is a mystery to me.

However, I don’t think it has anything to do with me being a girl or me being an idiot (because I’m not. Really. I promise. Despite how much Jersey Shore I watch). I think the that reason my brain is completely incapable of retaining information about jumpstarting my car is because my dad scared the hell out of me about it when I was learning to drive.

How could he scare me about jumpstarting a car? Easy. He pointed out that if you don’t do it in the right order and ground one of the cables first, you can get electrocuted.

And knowing my luck, if ANYONE was going to get electrocuted that way, it would be me. Therefore I avoid anything to do with jumper cables. I don’t even like accidentally touching the set in my trunk when I’m unloading groceries because in my mind, those wires are the inevitable purveyors of my eventual death.

Okay, maybe that’s an exaggeration. I’m probably not that likely to DIE from jumpstarting a car. But I really don’t want to wind up with Bride of Frankenstein hair considering how much it costs to maintain the keratin straightening that tames my Jew-fro.

So I stood at a safe distance of about 50 feet away just in case while my dad jumpstarted my car. And when it was once again capable of starting without his car wired to it, my dad decided it was probably a good idea to check on the other two things that I am completely and utterly unexplainably incapable of fixing on my own: my tires and my printer.

In theory, I know how to check my tire pressure. Just like how in theory, I know where my spare tire is, how to use a jack, and the value of pi to the 29th digit. In theory.

In reality, when there’s a problem with anything related to my car, my IQ seems to drop to the level of a starfish, which, contrary to what SpongeBob SquarePants would have you believe, is actually slightly smarter than a sponge (despite the lack of a brain in either organism) because a starfish can regenerate its own limbs. See? When it’s not car-related, I DO know things.

The problem is that the same day that my dad scarred me for life about the potential of electrocuting myself with jumper cables, he tried to teach me how to change a tire. But he probably would have had more luck teaching me to whistle (which I can’t do) or teaching my mom how to parallel park (sorry mom, but it’s true… at least you can whistle!)

(And on a side note, I called my mom to ask if I could put it out there that she can’t parallel park and she said okay, then laughed hysterically at my inability to whistle and asked what was wrong with me. Thanks mom. Really. Thanks. At least I can wink. And snap my fingers. Can you do that mom? No? NOW who belongs on the short bus, huh?)

(Just kidding, mommy, please don’t hurt me. I’m sure there are lots of people who can’t wink or snap their fingers or parallel park.)

Back to the tire story. Halfway through teaching me how to change it, my dad stopped and looked at me. “You’re never going to do this, are you?” he asked.


“What are you going to do if you get a flat?”

“Call you.”

He sighed, put the tire iron and jack away, and signed me up for AAA. Which was very sweet of him. Of course, I’ve never used AAA. Because their response time just isn’t as good as my dad’s.

Except he left yesterday for a business trip to New Mexico. So if I’m supposed to show up somewhere and don’t, you can safely assume that it was car trouble and that you’ll see me once my dad is back in town.

Or that my mom kidnapped me and locked me in her nightmare of a closet for making fun of her lack of snapping, winking, and parallel parking skills.

I’d whistle for help. But… well… yeah…

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