Quite apart from its credentials as The Most Impractical Car in the World, the MR2 has four worn tyres and an alarming ‘clonk’ noise emanating from what I hope is the suspension (as opposed to, say, the brakes). Whenever Husband parks the car in The Outlaws’ driveway, it rolls forward to snuggle against The Bro’s car.
Three days after he bought it, the rest of the family was out when Husband summoned me down to the garage. The MR2’s front wheels were resting on planks of wood leading to the top of two paint cans.
“Don’t tell me you’re going to do what I think you’re doing,” I said in disbelief.
“Of course not!” said my beloved. “Don’t be silly. I’m just going to drive up these planks onto the cans and have a little look under the car. Can you tell me if I’m going straight?”
“No, no, no, no, no. I don’t want any part of this-”
“Part of what?”
“Sweetie! It’ll be fine. What’s the worst that can happen?”
“The paint can might spring out under the intense pressure and hit me in the face fracturing my skull and rendering me in a coma for months until the doctors advise pulling the plug because even if I did wake up I’d be in a permanent vegetative state not to mention covered in permanent, gloss finish, wipe-clean paint in Deep-Fried Sage.”
“Ah now come on, I don’t think that’s going to happen-”
“You said the worst thing-”
“Ok, are you going to help or stand around talking?”
“If I have a choice, I’ll stand ar-”
“Well while you’re at it, would you mind just telling me if I’m straight-”
“Ok, wait – stop, stop, STOP! Those planks are not going to hold.”
“Nonsense! This car is very light. It’s a very light car.”
Husband got out of the car and grudgingly wedged another plank under the wheels. I can’t tell you how precarious the whole set-up looked, the tyres being about three times the width of the planks.
“Alright!” shouted Husband, back in the car. He put it in gear and gave the engine a couple of brisk revs. “I’m going up!”
I clutched my head as he lurched onto the planks, which bowed alarmingly. But it was the paint cans that gave way both at once with a loud ‘CRACK!’
Husband’s head popped out the driver’s window.
“What was that, then?” he said cheerfully.
“Paint cans.” Husband rolled back down and came out to inspect the cans. They were buckled to half their original height on one side, with plank-shaped dents in the top.
“That didn’t work very well,” he said. Then he stashed the cans under the garage bench and forgot all about them.
Two days later, Rosina entered the kitchen swinging the cans at her poor, innocent husband. “BRIAN! Want to share what happened here?”
Now, I’m not sure whether Father In Law was practicing evolutionary optimisation to protect his offspring, or genuinely thought he was responsible for the corrugated cans, but he took off on an elaborate story involving space monkeys taking over the garage with wedge-shaped helmets and liquid mind probes.
“My husband might be able to explain,” I said, evilly. “ANDREEEW! Rosina wants to talk to you!”
Husband, freshly arrived in the doorway, spotted the paint cans and his eyeballs swivelled around identifying potential escape routes.
“Ah-” he said.
“Husband?” I prompted.
“Are- are those paint cans?” said Husband, playing for time. I could almost hear him mentally rehearse a story involving space monkeys with wedge-shaped helmets and liquid mind-probes. “Ok, er, ah well. Oh yes! I meant to tell you about that . . .”