Your Editor Will Only Learn to Drive if Vanity Fair Teaches Him How

stickshiftWe’re big fans of Stick Shift, Brett Berk’s gay car blog over at Vanity Fair and while we were chatting back and forth about how in the hell Vanity Fair wound up with a gay car blog, I mentioned the fact that I don’t drive and have never had a driver’s license, even though I’ve lived in Los Angeles for almost five years. Next thing you know, he’s interviewing me about how I manage to survive (it’s possible!) and asking if I’d be willing to take a driver’s ed lesson in a Corvette as a follow-up. Proof that being eccentric and difficult gets you places– just not places that public transportation doesn’t go to.

Brett asks about how you can live in the city of angels without wheels, in his post “Young, Gay, and Unlicensed in L.A” and I’m happy to oblige:

“During his wanderings through L.A., Japhy has been “tapped” by moving vehicles about a half-dozen times. He’s taken up biking and been clotheslined by an opening car door. He’s had his bike stolen. He’s even attempted to sign up for driver’s ed, but couldn’t get the instructors to take seriously the idea that he didn’t need remediative training for getting too many DUI’s but simply wanted a regular class, like that offered to 15-year-olds. “They looked at me like I was fundamentally retarded.”

That’s when he got into public transportation. Unbeknownst to even many of the city’s residents, Los Angeles has one of the most highly used public transportation systems in the country. (Really. It’s in the top 10.) There are buses. The buses have people on them. The buses even have TVs on them. (I happily imagine them tuned to an endless loop of Speed, Five Were Missing, and the tail ends of The Graduate and Midnight Cowboy.) “It makes you see the city on a very different scale. And it gives you a bit of a sense of community. You see the same people on the bus every day.”

The bus TV thing is true, though it’s mainly a series of word games and a bizarre cooking show that’s supposed to be about ethnic cuisine, but features the same two guys wearing different outfits to represent the culture they’re cooking from. Anyway, the whole story is worth reading if you have any interest in finding out how being carless affects one’s dating life. Hint: Your editor is single.