Whenever I’m attempting to enter a friend’s car, I’m constantly lifting the door handle at the precise moment my friend is unlocking the car. If you’ve never enjoyed the luxury of this special humiliation, what happens is that the door’s lock mechanism is undermined and you must ask the driver to re-unclock the car. You can imagine my embarrassment when I repeat this error twice or more in succession. “Goddamnit, Eric!” my driver will finally yell. “Do you even want to go get ice cream?”
That’s why I have the policy of not locking my car: so that my passenger doesn’t suffer this humiliation. The last thing I need in my Dodge Intrepid is drama, which is why I’ve also done away with “shotgun.” You can forget about yelling “shotgun” if you’re walking to my car—I simply won’t hear of it. People who yell “shotgun” when I’m driving go right in the trunk. Shotgun rules have been the source of countless arguments in my lifetime, arguments that are second in ferocity only to those over beer pong rules, and I don’t need the aggravation. There’s a time and a place for yelling “shotgun,” and that time and place is in the eleventh grade when you’re headed to Best Buy to play with the keyboards because you’re in the eleventh grade and have absolutely nothing better to do with your freetime.