Always Turn Traction Control Off

I’ve developed the habit of asking myself “What could I write about?” throughout the day.  Unfortunately, today was so uneventful in my life that nothing really came to mind.  Until I was driving back from work.  Last year, my co-worker talked me into selling my 91 Civic Hatch and buying an 05 VW GTI instead.  So when I saw a Boss 302 Mustang exit onto the backroads just in front of me, I turned off traction control and chased him down.

Let me tell you, it was invigorating.  I turned the music down and sat up straighter.  My heart rate increased, and I didn’t blink as much.  If I’m honest, he was much faster than me.  I wasn’t really trying that hard since I’m not trying to go to jail (and since I’m half black, the cop would probably beat me as well).  But even though the Mustang was much faster on the straights, I closed the gap in the corners.

I only made one terrible mistake.  When we both took off from a stop sign, I redlined first gear and then ground the gears when going into second.  Even though I immediately said “Sorry Car” the damage had been done.  There haven’t been any adverse effects yet, but grinding gears is not a great thing to do under any circumstances, especially at higher revs.  So hopefully the GTI will forgive my exuberant indiscretion and German build quality will save the day.  Because I need this car to keep running without any expensive problems (like a transmission replacement) for at least another five years, perhaps I should be a bit more careful.

At the very least, the spirited drive combined with looming transmission issues livened up my afternoon commute.  That’s mainly why I drive a manual car.  On the right road, at the right time, with another quick car to chase, it can turn your day around.

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Always Turn Traction Control Off