Saturday, July 24, 2010

Man Van

Okay. Here it is. I can't live with the private shame of it any longer. The jokes. The insensitive comments I hear about others like me. I'm married. I have children. I drive a tractor and know how to build a house. You might never have suspected, but today is the day I'm coming out. Yes -- I want a mini-van. In it is: I bought one. Leased, actually. Maybe I'm still just experimenting?

The quiet longings started about a year ago. I'd be in some strange city with a group of colleagues and we'd all pile into a rented mini-van with the luggage neatly stowed. "This is roomy" I'd think, sinking into one of the second row captain's chairs. "And comfy."

The feelings would fade whenever I'd see one going down the road. Can I really be attracted to that? I'd assure myself I could not and my trusty Y chromosome would take control once again helping me to picture the diesel cans in the back of my pick-up. Sheets of plywood. Bags of Ready-Mix.

But then something started to change. Some of the mini-vans did look good going down the road. They were broad, sturdy looking, dependable. I stole a look inside one in a parking lot and found lazy-boy style chairs in the back. Lazy-Boy Chairs. The lumber yard delivers, I reminded myself. Maybe I could love a mini-van...

What finally pushed me over the line and out of the glove box was a friend's coming out. Like me, one would never suspect he was a secret mini-van fetishist. He owns a construction company. He fishes. Married, kids, dresses like a bum. He lives in New Hampshire, for Godsake, where they proudly drive around with "Live Free or Die" on their license plates. And now that license plate is on a stunning South Pacific Pearl Toyota Sienna with the bisque interior. Two years ago I would have recoiled and tried to intervene. But all I did was wonder what other interior colors were available.

And now I await delivery of my Predawn Gray Mica Sienna. I'm going the distance with it: Splitscreen DVD, navigation (what, ask for directions?), bluetooth, JBL 10-speaker sound, all-wheel's a van for a man's man. It's a Man Van. I want to get a vanity plate with that on it. And truck nuts.

So there it is. Love me for it. Hate me for it. I love my van. Now don't make me pull this thing over and come back there.

© Current Tom Bodett
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