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Recently I was leaving A.I. Friedman (the so-called department store for creative people) which is really the most awesomest store ever and if I got locked in there, I would die from all the fumes since I would try out every colorful, fancy marker in the place. Anyway, I was heading back to my car and then I suddenly stopped.

“Oh shit.”

“What?” said 4-year-old Summer.

“I mean shoot. Look at our bumper. Someone slammed into us. See where it’s all scraped. And they must have just driven off. I can’t believe it. I can’t believe someone would do that.”

Summer said nothing. She must have been mulling over the gravity of the situation and figuring out how we could seek retribution for this outrage.

While I stared at my bumper seething and Summer kept pondering, another shopper walk by and said…

“What’s wrong?”

“Oh someone hit me. Look at my bumper. It’s so messed up. It looks horrible. And they just drove away. I can’t believe it. I was in there for 15 minutes.”

So the woman said, “Where’s your car?”

“Right here,” I responded, pointing to my Toyota Sienna dream minivan which now looked a bit shady.

“That’s not your car. That’s MY car.”

I suddenly realized that I’m staring at HER gold Toyota Sienna. Mine is parked a few spots down. Wow, her bumper looks like crap.

I don’t remember exactly what I said but I know it went something like this…

“What? Oh my gosh. You’re right. This is your car. I got confused. Mine’s parked right there. Same color and everything, I’m so happy. I mean, I’m sorry about your car. Looking like it does. Not that it looks that bad. Because it doesn’t. I’m sure you love your car. We’re like gold minivan buddies! Three cheers for minivans!! Or not. Because they’re super lame. But roomy! With great sliding doors.  ANYWAY, I’ll get out of your way so you can leave. Bye.”

Oh my god. She probably thinks there is something seriously wrong with me.

We left. Quickly. In our car. The one with the very nice bumper.

mama bird notes:

This post was sponsored by Allstate insurance. Don’t worry. They didn’t tell me what to write. They just asked me to write about something driving related. And I said, how about something dent related?

Anyway, the company is sponsoring this post because they want you to know about a cool program, Good Hands Roadside Assistance. It’s a pay as you go roadside assistance.  You don’t need to have Allstate insurance. And there are no monthly fees. I know. Cool.

21 Responses to the fender bender

  • Heidi says:

    I’m SO glad someone else tries to get in the wrong car every once in a while. Last week, as I was leaving the gym, I was super bummed that my key fob wouldn’t unlock the doors and then I really freaked out when the key wouldn’t turn in the lock on the door. Only then did I realize the sunglasses on the console weren’t mine. And the best part? The woman whose back volvo I was trying to get in? She was standing RIGHT THERE and obviously got her laugh of the month by not saying something to me sooner.

  • Kerri says:

    Too funny! My dh drives a blue toyota Yaris. I didn’t know how many were really out there! I drive a 12 passenger van with a gazillion booster seats so it is pretty easy to spot! I had gone for a walk with one of the older girls in town & came to the car & it wouldn’t open. It wasn’t dh’s! There was a car in front & then his car. Luckily no one else saw! I also realized it when I looked in & the car floor was clean….definitely not dh’s car!

  • Meredith says:

    Hilarious! totally sounds like something that would happen to me – except I am the one with the messed up bumper and would be standing there looking around for the bumper fairy so I could thank her for fixing my car… and then on the drive home would be pulled over and arrested for grand theft auto.

    • Trish says:

      So funny. My husband has a grizzly ugly Toyota Corolla wagon whose fender is loosely attached with a bungee cord, circa 1991? 92? Crazy old. He gets irritated with me sometimes because when I drive it I refuse to lock it. Can you explain to me who in the WORLD would want to steal this car? My feeling is, if a person is desperate enough to steal that car, they are in a desperate situation. I suppose the same would go if someone indeed took off with four car seats: “Clearly you are in worse shape than we are–they’re yours.”

  • Valerie says:

    That is hilarious! Thank you for sharing these fantastic stories. It is nice to know that I’m not alone. When I purchased our minivan my sister begged me not to put any stickers on it. She told me that all minivans have stickers and they’re gaudy and ridiculous. After driving my minivan for a couple weeks I figured out why all the minivans have stickers- because they are all the same! Without the stickers we’re all constantly trying to get into vans that don’t belong to us. Pull into preschool pickup and no doubt you’ll see 10 vehicles, same make, some model, and same color. I’m seriously considering a large smiley face for my antenna! It’ll scream, “Here stupid, this one is yours!”

  • amourningmom says:

    It could have been worse you could have been trying to put Summer into your gold minvan buddy’s car – then she would have thought that you were trying to steal it (instead of just insulting it :-)). Hope that your vacation is still very relaxing. . .xoxo

  • Becky says:

    I remember standing in the commuter parking lot, yelling at my minivan (burgundy Honda Odyssey, so I’m not in the club). I cussed at it for not opening when I pressed the unlock button and launched into a profanity-laced berating at the less-than-satisfactory battery for pooping out on me after being installed only 2 months earlier.

    Much to the delight of the other commuters heading to their cars, I soon realized MY minivan was parked right behind that one and was blinking away and unlocking itself as requested.

    I parked in the far end of the lot for the next three weeks.

  • Ok, that’s hilarious. My world crumbled when another mom got the exact same SUV as me at preschool….but when I left school one day and headed for the wrong one, my 4 year old said, “Mom, that’s not our car—ours is the dirty one over there.”
    Of course…..

  • tracy says:

    So did you hand her an insurance card or start singing the “Allstate is there” song. Sorry, I am sure she would’ve loved it. Also, I am laughing so hard.

  • Roxanne says:

    I actually got into the wrong car once. I was sitting in the driver’s seat, & my friend got in the passenger seat and we sat there for a minute. I asked her where my zebra went (I had a zebra hanging from the rearview mirror) and she just looked at me all confused. Then I noticed the seat was way far back. I looked in the back and there was a bunch of stuff that was NOT MINE. We got out, looked a few spots over, and there was my car. Exact same model, color. We just giggled about it, wondering what the owner would have said if he’d seen us.

    But my main problem? Did my key work in his door, or did he leave it unlocked and I just didn’t notice?

  • Nanette says:

    I actually got into another ladies silver Sienna and sat in the passenger’s seat, all the while talking to my husband who I thought was in the driver’s seat. I eventually turned and looked at the poor woman who was actually in the driver’s seat. She was sitting wide eyed and open mouthed…. It was then that I realized that I was in the wrong van. A day to remember, let me tell you!

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kelcey kintner