They have taken our money for their bailout, but car makers have not asked for geezer help in designing the car of the future for seniors. I decided to help them anyway by conducting a focus group devoted to the topic “What do we geezers want in our future automobiles?”
Here’s some of the discussion, which I’m sure the car manufacturers are eagerly anticipating.
Lady Geezer 1: When it’s a nice day out, I want to be able to see over the dashboard. How about a button that raises my seat and the gas pedals and the roof and the front windshield so I can get way up and see the road like the SUV people?
Geezer Bill: Why don’t you just buy an SUV?
Lady Geezer 1: Those things are just too big. My daughter in law makes me use a step ladder to get into hers. With no safety rails, mind you.
Lady Geezer 2: I want help driving at night. How about a bank of lights that goes across the top of the car roof to light up the highway?
Geezer Bill: Wouldn’t that blind oncoming drivers?
Lady Geezer 2: So how about putting night vision glass in everyone’s windshield?
Male Geezer 1: My kids are talking about not letting me drive. All I did was knock over a garbage can…and the mailbox next to it…which kind of took out the fence that then crushed the rose bushes. But nobody was hurt. So what about an automatic chauffeur? I saw one in Men in Black II. Popped right out of the steering wheel.
Male Geezer 2: Well, if you’ve got the pop-up chauffeur, you’ll have time on your hands when you drive. So closed circuit digital TV in the car would be good. But they should make the Playboy Channel free. Looking at those pretty girls makes the drive seem shorter.
Geezer Bill: How long are the drives you take?
Male Geezer 2: Just to the supermarket. But I go to the one in the next county because they always have the almond milk for thirty cents less than the store near me.
Geezer Bill: You drive an extra 20 miles to save thirty cents on milk?
Male Geezer 2: I’m on Social Security.
Geezer Bill: But the gas you use costs more than the money you save.
Male Geezer 2: I drive slowly. I heard that uses less gas.
Male Geezer 1: What about safety against terrorism? We senior citizens are targets because we have all the money. I say cars for the elderly should be armor plated and come with bullet-proof glass.
Geezer Lady 2: How about big mirrors to see all around you? Like trucks have. And they should blink and flash whenever another car gets close to me.
Geezer Bill: Wouldn’t the blinking and flashing distract you?
Lady Geezer 2: Not really. I don’t look in my mirrors anyway.
I moved the discussion to the interior comforts geezers would like in their future cars.
Male Geezer 1: My stomach’s bigger than it was a few years ago, but my arms haven’t grown. By the time I finish driving, I have an impression of the steering wheel in my belly. How about a little indent for my tummy on the bottom of the steering wheel?
Lady Geezer 1: I don’t like all those digital controls they have inside new cars. How about the car just hearing what I say and doing it? You know, like “Turn on the air conditioner, please. And not too cold, like my daughter-in-law keeps her house.”
Male Geezer 1: That’s good. But they’d have to make sure they speak real loudly. My hearing isn’t what it used to be.
Lady Geezer 1: If they’re going to put voices in cars, why not let them talk to us all the time? Tell me when it’s time to take my pills. Ask how the grandkids are doing. It would keep me awake when I’m driving.
Geezer Bill: You know, you shouldn’t be driving if you’re sleepy.
Lady Geezer 1: If I get sleepy on a long trip I take a little nap. Sometimes I pull off the road for the nap. And you know what? The car seats don’t really go back far enough for a good sleep. How about a seat that changes into a bed? But not like those convertible sofas my daughter-in-law makes me sleep on. So thin you can feel the springs. And you think she could spare an extra blanket?
Male Geezer 2: Maybe they could turn the trunk into a bed. You know, put some lights in there for reading. Or closed circuit TV. Maybe even 3-D TV. Especially the Playboy Channel.
Some of the ideas my focus group came up with may seem far out. But since our bailout money helped car manufacturers return to profitability, I’m sure our future geezer car ideas will keep their profits rolling along.