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Go Fast or Go Home
(For Jennifer)


Pam Ward

Humor Columnist

  I have a wonderful “bonus daughter” who has been in my life since 1997 at the tender age of 10.  Jennifer is my “littlest-little-guy” Hunter’s mom. I am so blessed to have them in my life, and sometimes she reminds me so much of myself that I forget I didn’t actually give birth to her, except for her driving skills which she inherited directly from her father. She is known to exceed the speed limit sometimes.

  I recall my 48th birthday; Mamaw (Jenn’s grandmother) was treating us girls to a Tricia Yearwood concert at the Fox. I recall we were running a bit late. I recall being, hmm, what’s the word? TERRIFIED.

  Jenn is quite the multi-tasker though, not only was she busy applying makeup while speeding in the left lane, she was also able to shake her fist and shout expletives at other drivers if necessary. Yesserie, it was quite a ride up I-75 with me steadily applying my brake, which apparently wasn’t working. I must say that upon arrival at the Fox I did not think $10 was too much at all to pay for an alcoholic beverage the size of a Dixie cup.

  So, when she asked me to ride with her to Macon last week, I pretty much knew what to expect. I made sure to bring my sleep mask with me for the scary parts. When I got into the car, she announced that we were “running a little bit late.” Uh-oh.

  Yes indeed, we had twenty minutes to make it to her appointment in downtown Macon. From La’Grove that’s a good 50.3 miles. To her credit, sweet Jenn had stuck a piece of paper in front of the speedometer so I couldn’t see how fast we were going. But I still kind of could.

  As we headed southbound on I-75, I could see the needle was all the way over to the right, but she assured me we were not exceeding the speed limit, even though it felt as if liftoff were imminent. She knows me well though, so right away she asked “where do you want to stop for lunch on the way home?”  I was so caught up in our discussion that I barely noticed 19 minutes had passed and we had arrived. One whole minute to spare.

  I must confess, I am a bit jealous of people driving fast. Not that I condone it, or that I don’t wish Jenn would slow down because I do. (Hear that Jenn?) Still, it does bring back memories of me sailing down Highway 42 in my ’76 Pacer, blonde hair flying, Fleetwood Mac on my 8-track...  *sigh*

  Anyway, I’m still a pretty good driver. Well, except for the pesky night blindness. Which means sometimes I have to slow down a little. People get so mad. I think 35 mph is plenty fast but not everyone agrees so sometimes I’ve been forced to shake my fist and/or shout an expletive. Which I must admit is still fun, even if you are only going 35 mph. 

  The last time Pam was stopped by the police for her slow driving and arm gestures on Hwy. 42 in Locust Grove, she offered the police officers coupons for a free mani-pedi at the La’Grove Spa and Wellness Center. Unfortunately, the police were not as enthused.


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