The doctor tells you the news that you are pregnant. “Better go get a minivan,” you say, “a car seat is not going to fit into my sport car.” This is the stereotypical scenario America has been brought up on since the introduction of the minivan. But has anyone asked why? Why a minivan, of all things? What is so appealing about trading in your younger side for the van your parents got when you were born? To me this is anything but appealing, and that, along with other various reasons, is why I know I will never own a minivan.
For one thing, I hate getting stuck behind a slow-moving minivan on the road with about twenty bumper stickers plastered on that read “proud parent of an honor student” or “proud to be a soccer mom”. I am sure all of us have been in that kind of situation before, and at that particular moment, thoughts of a bumper sticker that said “my kid can beat up your honor student” may have seemed humorous. My memories of other minivans and their drivers have contributed the why I dislike them so much.
The twisted automaker marketing system has also contributed in part to this feeling I have towards minivans. The clever marketing executives know they have expectant mothers on a string, and continue to entice them by offering such amenities as stow n’go seating and built-in DVD players to keep them buying their minivans. I, however, will not give into these so-called “temptations” when someday I join the “expectant mother club”. I am not a conformist, and I refuse to give into purchasing such a vehicle just because I have kids.
I do not wish to be viewed as the “lady with all those kids” because I own a minivan or to be called a “soccer mom” by my friends. I do not want to be like all the other mothers out there, and by not owning a minivan, I can break away and be free of the classification of a typical mother.
Some say I will end up having a minivan anyway, but they obviously do not know how strong-willed I can be. There are plenty of other options excluding minivans that will function just as well, if not better, even without the handy sliding door. For example, my sister owns a big truck that she hauls her four kids in everyday.
I know that as I grow older and wiser, I will eventually change my mind about some things, but that does not necessarily mean I will change my mind about minivans. The look and certain capabilities minivans offer are appealing and enjoyable to some, and that is fine. I find neither interest nor enjoyment in them. I can honestly say that they are not for me, and I am vowed and determined that I will never ever own a minivan.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.