Jan and I made our 2017 New Year’s resolutions…
I resolved to lose the final 15 pounds on last year’s 10-pound diet.
Jan shocked me with her New Year’s resolution. “Let’s learn to use your cars electronic navigation system.”
Hmmm… I thought carefully about what I should say. I needed to remain calm and convinced myself not to overreact.
Then I screamed at the top of my lungs, “ARE YOU FRIGGIN’ NUTS?”
I thought why stop there?
I blurted out, “If that’s what you want to do why don’t we kill two birds with the same stone— and use the navigation system to find the fastest route to a marriage counsellor!”
When married couples use their onboard navigation system, it always ends up with the same three person discussion: The husband swears; the wife says, “Look, let me see if I can get it to work!” and the onboard navigation system lady keeps repeating, “Please say a command!”
Jan programmed her car’s navigation. It was easy-peezy. She didn’t need the manual.
I didn’t bother with the manual either– I’m a card-carrying middle age male baby boomer.
The next morning we are sitting in the car; parked in the garage.
I let out a sigh… I touched the screen. Right away a computerized female voice– with about as much warmth as a Yak in heat– said, “Please say a command.”
Before we knew it, she said, “Say a device name like Phone or USB. You can also say Navigation or Climate. Main menu. Please say a command.” Jan assumed the position everyone speaking to a vehicle navigation system does– she faced the center of the dashboard, leaned in, and clearly and deliberately enunciated: ‘Wine Store.’
I thought to myself what the hell! “Jan, you know where every wine store is within a 100-mile radius! A wine store is the last place you need directions!”
The navigation lady interrupted, “Please say a command.”
Grrr. If I had my druthers I’d say I could feel my sphincter tightening!
Jan repeated herself, “W..I..N..E S..T..O..R..E.”
What I said cannot be repeated here.
The navigation lady said, “Please say a command.”
Before Jan could lean towards the dashboard and politely enunciate ‘Wine Store’ one more time, I let out a blood curdling screen: “WINE STORE!!!”
Jan said, “Gary, settle down! Let me do this.” The navigation lady droned on, “Please say a command.” I snapped, “I SAID WINE STORE!!”
“Okay Gary let’s try something else?”
“Yeah! Like we close our eyes and let the car drive itself to the Wine Store like it always does!”
From the universal position for speaking to a vehicle navigation system, Jan spoke clearly, “Shopping Mall.”
By now I’m fuming like Lyin’ Ted Cruz at the Republican debates…
“Jan, the wine store is IN the shopping mall! If she can’t give us directions to the Wine Store, how on earth do you think she’s got directions to the Shopping Mall? Sheesh!!”
Hold on. I couldn’t believe what the computer lady said…
“Shopping Mall. Where would you like to search? Nearby or in a city?”
I was gobsmacked!
“Where would you like to search? Nearby or in a city? Please say a command.”
Jan silently bragged about her ability to master the technology. I pouted. The computer lady continued like she was Senator Elizabeth Warren attacking Donald Trump…
“I didn’t hear you. You can say ‘nearby’ or ‘in a city.’
“Where would you like to search? Please say a command.”
“You can say ‘nearby’ or ‘in a city.”
“I didn’t hear you. Are you still there?”
“You can also say Help. Please say a command.”
You want a command? I’ll give you a command! Give me a map. You know one of those printed on both sides of a big piece of paper. A map that is outdated by the time it’s printed. A map that no matter how hard you try, you can’t fold it up again.