December 2012 Archives

A couple years ago, a good friend of mine named Sondra took me to a rally track for the first time. (She was close friends with the track owner.) She asked him to use her boyfriend’s Porsche to show me the basics of rally racing. The track owner drove slowly at first, explaining as he went. Once I was familiar enough with the track and the basics of rally driving, he warned me that things might get scary and then let loose. Being a bit of an adrenaline addict, I couldn’t do anything but laugh. It was the best thing EVER. When we were done Sondra handed me the keys and said, “Have a great time.” Me being me, I couldn’t bring myself to go over 50mph. I was terrified I’d wreck it, you see. So, I took it around the track a few times and then tried to hand over the keys. Sondra folded her arms across her chest. “Oh, no you don't. I said drive it. I was watching. You didn’t drive," she said. "I don’t want to see you back here until you fucking drive that thing.” I told her that I’d lived in houses that had cost as much as that car. She still wouldn’t take the keys back. “Have you seen Jack drive?” She knew I’d seen him slide off the track into the dirt and up a hill sideways at least once. However, I told her it’s Jack’s car. He can wreck it if he wants to. I can't replace it. She just grinned at me. “Jack loaned that Porsche to his 16 year-old niece last month, Stina. I promise you won’t do anything to it she didn’t do already.” And with that, I drove.

I have to say, I’ve been a big fan of Charlie’s work since my husband handed me a copy of The Atrocity Archives. And I’m trying very hard right now not to feel as if Mo has just handed me her violin and told me to play a scale...


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