Stunted

There is an old adage about warfare, deeming it “interminable boredom punctuated by moments of sheer terror.”  That seems an adequate description of several of my Groupon adventures.

Last weekend I signed up for a stunt driving class.  Much like my adventures at the gun range I secretly suspected we were about to unearth my inner International Spy which is an alter ego I am utterly convinced that I possess despite all evidence to the contrary.   I don’t doubt that there are many people in the business of international espionage but I suspect most of them are not unnervingly good looking nor do they tear about the countryside off roading in a very public way in vehicles that retail for hundreds of thousands of dollars BEFORE you factor in the stereo upgrade.  But if I am going to unleash an inner demon that is the one that I would like to unleash thank you very much.  I would settle for unnervingly good looking, actually.  I started with the driving.

The stunt driving school had three BMW3 series cars which are apparently idea for the task as they are perfectly balanced and certain safety features like anti-lock brakes could be over ridden.  We were taught several basic exercises – the “J” move which is where you drive spin the car 180 degrees, another version of this that begins with the car in a high speed reverse, and a basic slalom.  We were taken through each exercise in car with the instructor demonstrating then swapped out so we could have a go on our own.

Here’s where the war adage takes effect.  When you are in the car it feels like you are only playing around for about five minutes.  In reality with the demonstrations and depending on how quickly you cotton on it is more like twenty.  Three cars and twelve participants makes for a lot of waiting.  Plus the weather which had promised to be a sunny and balmy fall day had turned to the first bite of winter and was overcast and chilly, and there was only an open sided tent in which to take shelter.  I was alone so there were moments of pure enjoyment followed by extended periods of waiting around, not really rooting for the other participants and secretly resenting them a little.  The good news is I am pretty good at it.  That’s where the war adage falls apart for me.  I am curiously fearless and in my world there is no such thing as too fast too high too spinny too anything in my world.  The main instructor had me in the car and after the first “J” spin he stopped and informed me that generally he liked to take a moment then so people could take a moment to regain their composure and let their adrenalin settle.  I think my pulse rate was about the same as when I emerge from a refreshing nap and he was a little startled to see how calm I was.  “You look fine” he said in a slightly curious and possibly disappointed way.  “I don’t really do scared” I explained.  One bonus point for me.  (As a aside, I actually DO scared but only in a different way.  Invite me to a party with more than four people at it or ask me to go bathing suit shopping in January and you can see what pure terror looks like).

The class was fun but I will remember to bring a buddy the next time I do such a thing, if only to provide an appropriate measure of fear-by-proxy for the instructors.  It was all I could do not to slam my little car in its spot in the garage by executing a reverse spin but I rationalized that I didn’t have the run up space.  Perhaps my inner spy will be unleashed yet

 

 

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