Monday, August 23, 2010

Let’s ban automatic windows

Just when I’d resigned myself to driving around with the van window permanently stuck in a partially closed position -- leaving a tolerable two-inch gap -- it finally came unstuck the other day.

The funny thing was, I’d just sent our paychecks through the pneumatic tube in the bank drivethrough lane when it happened. I was standing there with the van door open so I could reach the tube. While I was waiting, just for something to do I pressed the window button. And suddenly it worked! So I gave a little shout of triumph and hopped back in the van and opened the window -- only to discover that I couldn‘t reach the tube. So I had to get back out again.

And so now we have an apparently functional window that we never use, because I don’t trust it to not get stuck in some inconvenient position.

Which makes me wonder: Who decided that automatic windows were a mark of human progress? Can’t we all just go back to the old-fashioned cranks, which almost never break down? I mean, the worst that ever happened is a knob would break off or something, but you could still get the window open with just a little bit of extra effort. Do kids today even remember hand-cranked windows?

If I had a Facebook page, I’d start a campaign to demand automakers scrap automatic windows: Ban them! Wipe them off the face of the planet! Except for people who need special assistance, I guess.

So maybe this will get me over the inertia speed bump and I’ll finally plug in to the rest of the human interface. We’ll see.

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