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A Girl and Her Car This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   Have you ever noticed that special bond between aguy and his car, and how a man will treat his car like it's a human being? Haveyou ever been to car shows and seen men drooling all over their shoes as theywalk through the rows of cars? The love between a man and a car has beenwell-documented, but what about a girl and her car?

I grew up seeing hotrods all around me; I credit my father for my childhood of cars and classic rock.It never seemed to bother him that he had a daughter instead of a son to bring toswap meets. I looked forward to summers because of the car shows everyweekend.

Now that I'm older, I am noticing things about the hot-roddingscene that I don't like. Namely, the role of women. Look at any popular hot-rodmagazine, and what do you see on the cover? A scantily clad, well-endowed womanhanging all over a car. Now, back up a minute - this is a car magazine. What onearth does a large-breasted woman in a bikini have to do with hot rods? I thinkit's safe to say that those who buy these magazines are buying them for the cars,not the women. If anything, the women on the covers are a nuisance, most oftenthey are blocking a beautiful car. And, seriously, when a hot rod magazine has aswimsuit edition, isn't that a bit much?

I was recently at a swap meetwith my father and my boyfriend, Jason. My dad left me in charge of selling ourcar parts while he walked around. I took my position in the middle of our space,surrounded by parts, and watched as people examined them. I was feeling veryproud of myself, until people asked questions. If a guy wanted to know how much apart was or what kind of car it went to, he asked Jason, who was way in the backand didn't know the first thing about the parts. It was obvious I was the onerunning the show, yet people seeing Jason - a guy - decided he would know morethan I would. I was fuming by the end of the day. That meet showed me the waypeople view women in the hot-rodding scene - oblivious and just there to lookpretty. I am ready to shatter that image.

I give credit to the womenwho have found their niche with cars. The women writers and editors at carmagazines, and female hot-rodders and dragsters get my utmost respect. Thesewomen show that no matter what, women will always be as good as the guys, if notbetter. I encourage girls who have an interest in cars to pursue it. Don't beafraid to be made fun of, just keep doing what you like. I look at the future ofhot rodding and see more women involved, and I am happy to know I willcontribute.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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