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View Diary: You Can Teach a Young Dog Old Tricks: Driving a Clutch (101 comments)

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  •  I was a 17 yo school bus driver. (1+ / 0-)
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    Once upon a time like 1966 as I remember, HS students could drive school buses in NC.    So at 17 I took the school bus driver's class.  There were about 10 of us in the class and it was held on a Saturday.  The first part of the day was classroom safety then we all piled into a 40ft. school bus and away we went.  I had actually learned on an automatic but had quickly pretty much taken over my Dad's old pickup which was three on the tree so I knew how to change gears although the bus was my first four speed and first stick shift.  

    Anyway in order to pass the school bus test the instructor would set a full Coke bottle on the floor and you had to be able to start off and stop, on level ground of course, without tipping the bottle over which took some doing.  I think we all passed.  It was a rural area and most of us had driven trucks and tractors.  I drove a school bus for the next two years and earned my most of the money for college doing it.  

    By the way.  The bus accelerators were heavily governed and set at 35 mph top speed.  Despite the later hue and cry decrying the safety of handing a loaded school bus to a teen there were almost no accidents and I think we all learned a lot about responsibility from the experience.

    We earned the minimum wage which was $1.75 which Liz Warren claims would now be $22 an hour.  At age 65 and with a BA, I currently make $15.50 on a job I've been doing for the past 8 years.  Do you see what's wrong with this picture?

    Finally I had 6 VW Beetles and you could just dump the clutch without killing the engine.  You could knock them out of gear rev up the engine and downshift without using the clutch.  I taught my sister to drive a straight drive on one in about 15 minutes.  My current Honda Accord has a trick clutch that grabs and I still kill the engine once in  awhile.  Anyway.  I figure I've rowed mostly small cars and trucks at least a million miles by the shift stick in the last 40 years.  

    A bad idea isn't responsible for those who believe it. ---Stephen Cannell

    by YellerDog on Sat Sep 14, 2013 at 08:15:10 PM PDT

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