Wednesday, October 27, 2004

"Reverse" Psychology

Got a call from the Eldest Aardvark Child at about 8:30 last night indicating that she had finished work and was fixin’ to head home.

Got a second call from the EAC at about 8:32.

“I just hit a car in the parking lot!”

She had dinged it a little and had dinged ours a little more. She didn’t know what to do, so she just pulled back into the spot she had been trying to back out of. “I hit the gas and it went faster than I intended to and so I backed into the other car!!!!”

I reassured her that everything was going to be ok, and that she should just sit tight and we’d be there in a couple of minutes.

Gathered up Mrs. A and headed out. Mrs. A called the EAC while we were in the car and gave her that reassurance that only a Mom can give. The EAC called again to tell us the folks with the other car had shown up and that they didn’t seem too upset. At that point we were less than a minute away, so once again we told her to sit tight.

Got there and found that she’d hit a Ford Expedition. Mostly, she just scuffed the bumper. There was a light scratch a little higher that may or may not have been caused by this incident, but even so probably wouldn’t require more than just some touch-up paint. Our car had a little cosmetic damage to the bumper – mostly a scuff mark (it may have cracked the plastic – hard to tell in the dark) and broken the right rear taillight. Of course the whole taillight assembly will have to be replaced since it’s all of a piece nowadays, and I fully expect it to cost $100 or more. But I think that’s getting off pretty cheap.

Mrs. A is calling our insurance guy today to warn them that a claim may be filed. If so, it should be minor, although with my lack of faith in the basic goodness of human nature, I wouldn’t be surprised if they claimed their car was totaled. Hopefully not. They seemed like nice folks, not that that matters when dollar signs appear.

A digital camera sure would have come in handy to document the damage. Oh well.

Anyway, Mrs. A drove the offending vehicle home and I followed her with the EAC riding along. More reassurance was given along with the reinforcement that she had done the right thing by calling and by sticking around and owning up to what happened with the other folks.

When she had settled down, I did tell her that from now on when she called to tell us she was on her way home I was going to admonish her to “drive like a bat-out-of-hell.”

She looked at me, shocked. “What!?!” (I don’t usually say things like that - using the “h – e – double toothpicks” word, as Radar O’Reilly would say)

“Well, I told you tonight to ‘drive careful’ and you saw how well that worked…”

Believe it or not, that seemed to relax her a little. I hope she thought that if Dad could joke about it, maybe it wasn’t such a big deal after all.

The big test will be on Saturday when she works again. Need to get her back on that horse…

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