Is This You? The beeps of shame

Lock your car. Take your keys. These are the words taught to us as we were learning to drive and be responsible car owners. Of course it should go without saying to never drink and drive. But that’s a subject I’m leaving to others better equipped to delve into that arena. The lock your car and take your keys arena is where I want to drive your attention today.

Of course I lock my car. I would be devastated if someone got into my car and took my four dollars and 17 cents worth of loose change I throw in the console between the two front seats in case I have a need to get a soda at the nearest drive through. I call that change my Pepsi money. Even though I like Coca-Cola, it just sounds better to say Pepsi money than Coke money! And it would be a loss for sure if that same bad guy took my back up roll of fruit flavored life savers I have had since Regan was in office — the governor’s office.

OK so I don’t have a ton of valuables in my car. But I also don’t want my car to be driven off to some greasy chop shop and be cut apart and sold by Marlon Brando wannabes ready to offer you a deal you can’t refuse! So I lock my car to keep her and her cargo safe from sticky fingers.

But that second set of words. Take your keys. Nowadays I seem to have a problem, and apparently I’m not alone. If you’re new to me, you should know I own a devil car. Yes, the little devil is way smarter than yours truly. I take no pride in that fact, but I’m a realist and know my limitations.

That knowing your limitations thing is one important life lesson to learn. I remembered finally realizing it when I was asked to climb a steep muddy hill on a Honda 110. Suffice to say, I now know I have limitations and I use that life knowledge nearly every day! But again, I have slipped off the trail ...

So just how smart is my car? Well, it doesn’t need keys. Nope, some rocket scientist, OK, a car scientist, at a car manufacturing plant in some far east country (hint, hint), decided to create a car that can tell if you have your key fob thingy on your person or in your purse, and without a real key looking type of key you can lock, unlock, start and turn off your car by pushing various buttons. Well, I had to have that! It was so cool when the salesman was going over all the do-dahs of the car when we bought it. Oh, we bought it, all right. We bought it all. Silly us!

Skip forward a year ... I now carry the key thingy in my pocket; luckily I wear jeans everywhere. I parked at a Costco to do some light shopping. Wait, light shopping and Costco? Again, silly me. Anyway, I parked and my other half and I got out of the car. To lock our devil car you just need to push a little square black spot on one of the front door handles and the car politely says, “Beep,” from somewhere around its rear end. (Well, that sounds unladylike).

So I touched the magic spot and my devil car said, “Beep, beep, beep.” Wait. What? Three beeps. Well, I thought I was hearing things. So as any woman would, I touched the magic spot again. “Beep, beep, beep.” Okay, now I’m getting hot and I want to get to the muffins in Costco before they run out. I touched it again, of course. “Beep, beep, beep.” All this time the husband is just waiting, looking at me as though I’m crazy. I Am not! He, of course, can’t hear the beeping anyway.

Must be door ajar. I go around and open, close and check each door. Didn’t seem any were askew. So of course I touched the magic spot again. “Beep, beep, beep.” Well, what the?

The key fob thingy is in my pocket, yes, I checked. So I went back to the beginning. I opened the driver’s door and got in. I closed the door and took a deep breath and noticed the air conditioner was cooling me. Nice. And the radio was on. Tuned to the ‘60s. Wait, the tachometer was registering like 1,500 — well, that could only mean — yes, the car was still running. Note to self, devil car doesn’t lock if engine is still running. Engine running, air blowing, radio playing, and owner — stupid!

Trina Machacek lives in Eureka, Nevada. Her book ITY BITS can be found on Kindle. Share your thoughts and opinions with her at


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment