Car and Driver

Labmate, Advisor, and I regularly go out to lunch together during the week. Sometimes FGS (Former Grad Student, who now works with our collaborator) and Roommate accompany us, but mainly it's just the three of us. We have our favorite pizza joint that we frequent, where the staff knows us by name/drink order. Advisor refers to it as an “Alternative Lab Meeting.”

Now, Advisor is fairly easy going. He doesn't care what selection or duration of hours we work... as long as we're productive. He's also graduated at least three female grad students. He's married to a feminist and has a daughter. So, he's not the usual Old(er) White Guy. That's why this exchange surprised me:

My car will stall if I brake during the first few minutes that it's on, unless I drive with two feet. And that's a pain, complained Labmate about his old car.

Well, I drive with two feet all the time, I said teasing him about being a wuss.

That's because you drive a stick, he replied.

You drive a stick shift?! Advisor said, surprised.

Well, yeah. Why wouldn't I? I drive a sports car. What fun is an automatic sports car?

Because it's rather unusual for a woman, Advisor replied.