What? It’s not like you have to pay ’em, right?
If I had an eight-year-old son to use as a designated driver, whether for making it home before the wife does or for a balls-out run across state lines, I’d at least give the kid a fake mustache, a funny hat, or even an eyepatch to wear. If the police are gonna find me passed out drunk in the front seat with my child at the wheel, I’d sure rather get a wake-up jab from a cop trying not to laugh than by a trooper so angry he tazes me in the ear. I mean, I’d even try writing something like, “Proud Son of a Probation Dad” on the kid’s forehead. Anything’s better than letting a mug shot like this one do all the talking.
Here’s what I’m thinking: using your eight-year-old as your designated driver makes you a genu-wine gaww-damned idiot, no? That’s exactly how folks are reading our Livingston Parish, Louisiana friend here, and probably rightly so. So if you’re taking it to that level, why not first outfit little Jimmy in a Gorilla costume? At least the media will have a little more to work with than plain ol’ child endangerment and an ever narrower perception of the Hicksville region in which you reside. Throw ’em off; twist things up a little; learn them little ones some Klingon! The idea is to leave ’em guessin’! Force those local news reporters into making you a real flash in the pan. The media’s ready to do it, too, so if you’re determined to go out like there’s a horse turd where your brain’s supposed to be, why not make it a big, silly horse turd? In fact, hold a press conference (by text of course) the next time you need Junior to take the wheel and get ahead of everyone’s unfair judgement of your smooth ‘n solid parenting skills. You could even do it for charity! Just pledge 31¢/mile toward Project Night Night for every mile your kid can travel before people start screamin’ bloody baby murder into their cellphones about the mini gorilla careening through Livingston, and a child who’s not your own might actually see her dreams come true.
Just a few notes from a non-parent.