Joining the Minivan Elite

(No, it's not just you. I can't believe I just typed that either.)

I drive a pretty big car -- A Honda Pilot.

(OK, I guess it's an SUV.)

I hate driving big cars. I hate parking them. I hate filling them up with gas. However, I have a growing family -- one with a car-pooling preschooler, a cute toddler, and that will soon include a third child who needs to be in a car seat. Did I mention that we're tall people? We are. As much as I hate to admit it, I need a bigger car.

At this stage of the game, I'm left with limited options. I could buy a crossover (with captain's chairs in the middle row so that we can actually reach the third row) or I could buy a minivan.

Just writing that makes me want to grab a gin martini and play some Nina Simone, but I can't do that because I'm pregnant. So I sit here on a Boppy (for the sciatica) sipping my mango juice and humming "Mysterious" by The Backyardigans, writing about how I'm too hip for a minivan, and yes, I do get the irony of the whole thing.


The only crossovers we could find were made by Chevy, GMC, and Buick. Notice a trend? Yes! They're all by General Motors! The company that's bankrupt for making unreliable cars? I've always bought boring old Japanese cars, and I can honestly tell you that the only times I see a mechanic is when I take the cars in for oil changes -- every couple of years or so. (Shh!) I have no desire to start a relationship with a mechanic a this stage in my life, but because I have an open mind, we went to GM dealers to check the cars out.

Have you been inside a car dealership lately? It's very, very depressing.

However! The scruffy Chevy salesman still had the balls to tell me that the Chevy Traverse is a great "girl car" AND then he took my husband out back for a little talk, about what, I don't know. Probably about how "girls" aren't welcome at Chevy dealers? And, hey! Let's take a look at our shiny Camaros? My husband kept looking back at me nervously, because he knew I was pissed AND he knew that it was over. Because I'm a mean "girl."

Despite all of this, we went to a GMC/Buick dealer. The Buick Enclave is a pretty nice looking car. The GMC Acadia is exactly the same, but a little less attractive. I asked the salesman which one of the two models would survive GM's reorganization.

He didn't know.

I asked him if the Enclave came in Diamond White.

He said that all he has is the one they had in stock, take it or leave it.

I snorted.

He said he was serious, because the factories were shutting down for the summer.

And that was the end of that.

So! Off we went to minivan-land. I live in New England, so I have to have 4WD or I will not leave the house for six months. That leaves one choice: The Toyota Sienna.

We go to the "largest Toyota dealer in New England!" and tell them we want to test drive a Sienna.

He tells us we're out of luck.

Turns out, there's a waiting list to even buy a minivan. They're sold out until the fall. Let me repeat: MINIVANS ARE THE HOTTEST VEHICLE OUT THERE. You can wave all the cash you want in their faces, and they can't sell you one.

So I can't have one. And of course, that means that now I really want one. The sliding doors! The remote entry! The storage!

What has happened to me? Help me.