Editor's Notes 2.0: First-Car Excitement

Editor’s Notes 2.0: First-Car Excitement

My son's first car, a 2005 Pontiac Grand Am GT Coupe, has given him the need for speed.


All I’ve been reading about lately is how the young people of today aren’t as interested in driving as previous generations. But I can tell you one kid who was practically doing handsprings down his driveway when his first car rolled up: my son.

Granted, he’s a car guy. He thinks it’s not a car if it doesn’t have manual transmission. He loves going to car shows and can rattle off his top five at the drop of a hat. The thought of a robot car driving him around some day makes him furious. And just like the MTV study indicated several years ago, he would gladly surrender his cellphone before his wheels.

He’s thrilled with the car he got, a 2005 Pontiac Grand Am GT Coupe, but he wants to fix some cracks in the bumper and clean the hazy headlights.

“I couldn’t live with myself if I didn’t,” he said.

Wow! I lived with a half-open window due to a busted regulator for over a year once!

Of course, I’m going to help him with these fix-ups, which will present some nice father-son bonding time and an educational experience to boot. He can’t wait to detail it and talked about wanting to make the rims shine like new.

He also just landed his first job as a busboy at a restaurant, and he’s attacking the plates and silverware and cups with a zeal I’ve never seen before, as the car has given him a renewed purpose to pay his car insurance and loan every month.

“Everybody has to earn money to pay for the things they love, so I’m glad you’re learning,” I told him.

The other day, he took me for a test drive. As we eased out of my parents’ bucolic enclave and headed toward a main drag, he said rather sinisterly, “Wanna see what it can do?” What made it worse was that he didn’t turn his head to me at all; at most, he cocked an eye at me to see my reaction.

“Um, OK…” I replied.

This was what I feared! That his raging hormones and teenaged boy bravado was going to wrap this car around a telephone pole!

We got onto the main road and he punched the gas, and I felt the front of the car rise as we lurched forward. I think there were probably finger impressions on my legs long after the ride was over. As we headed back to my parents’ house, he said, “Think I should do that with Papa Terry?”

“No, I don’t,” I said. “I think his heart is too old for that.”

You May Also Like

BodyShop Business 2022 Executives of the Year

This year’s Single-Shop award winner is Michael Bradshaw of K & M Collision in Hickory, N.C., and the Multi-Shop winner is Matt Ebert of Crash Champions.

For the 38th consecutive year, BodyShop Business has recognized distinguished collision repair facility owners and managers with its Executive of the Year award.

The awards are given to true collision repair “visionaries”: individuals who have experienced great success by being forward-thinking, overcoming challenges and persevering. Winners are selected based on experience, special achievements and involvement within the local community and collision repair industry.

Conducting Collision Business: It’s a New Day

The goal is not to declare war against insurers; it is to declare independence for your organization so that you’re able to provide the highest level of service to your true customers.

Don’t Be Quint: Embrace ADAS and Modern Vehicle Equipment

We can avoid a fate similar to Quint’s in the movie Jaws if we embrace ADAS, technology and training.

Welder Woman: Forging a Trail with Fire

Jaime Shewbridge is the first woman to have won the 2020 I-CAR Instructor of the Year award and the 2021 Welding Instructor of the Year award — and she’s not done yet.

It’s Time to Talk About Money with Young Body Techs

It’s time that we as leaders start to educate our young technicians on how to manage, grow and save money.

Other Posts

Boosting the Value of Your Business

If you have more than five years before you plan to exit your business, there are many things you can do to increase its value and decrease your asset gap.

Running a Family Collision Business: Stay in Your Lane

In a family business, it’s important to divide the duties and respect each other’s lanes.

Need the 411: What Should Consumers Do After a Vehicle Crash?

What do you do when consumers need info after experiencing a vehicle crash?

DRPs: A Broken Model?

How can insurers and repairers work together to streamline the claims process and earn a fair profit?