I think it’s time to put the canines back in their place. They really shouldn’t be assigned driving duties. Really. Does anyone seriously think they are performing well in these roles? True story: I was stuck behind a car the other day. Wait, there’s more. The car hadn’t moved for long enough that the sun had shifted in the sky, so I thought it appropriate that I drive around it. As I attempted to drive around the left side of the car, a little teacup dog poked its head out of the driver’s side window and gave me a most disapproving glare. It was clearly quite put out by my maneuver. Since I don’t speak dog, I was unable to inquire as to its plans for moving the car in the near future, so I just proceeded along my way. But, I was shaken. I was desperately trying to draw the schema in my head that allowed that tiny dog to reach its legs down to the pedals. And, thankfully, at the time, it didn’t even occur to me that the car might not be an automatic. I can’t even imagine what that schema would look like. I guess I would have had to pull over and lie down for a nap.
I’ve been seeing a lot of dogs in the driver’s seat recently. I realize they are sharing driving duties with their owners, but I’m very uneasy with this arrangement. These vehicles seem to be operated very erratically, and I try to avoid them as much as possible. Look, dogs really aren’t great pilots, or even copilots. Their capacity for paying attention is pretty limited. If driving amounted to eating every morsel of a giant steak, then sure. A dog would rock at driving. But if you are expecting your dog to offer assistance operating your motor vehicle, you’re going to need someone to walk in front of your car with a very big steak. And you’re still going to have to do all the work because your dog is going to be pretty busy with the production of a very large puddle of saliva while gazing without blinking at that steak. So, you see, this is an experiment that is guaranteed to fail. I have tried it. I have given Lexi little copilot duties. The simplest of tasks. Hey Lexi, how about you watch for cars at the foot of the driveway. She can’t focus her attention for the 50 seconds of time it takes to move from the top of the driveway to the bottom. I’m really looking for a co-pilot that can perform to a higher standard than that. Cats might be a different story. I don’t have a cat, so I can’t perform this experiment. I’ll have to start checking my fellow travelers to see if there are any feline pilots or co-pilots. But, bottom line is that we should probably just steer away from the animal kingdom altogether when staffing our household vehicles.