The other day, my daughters were playing on the brick patio that constitutes the backyard of our rental house in Berkeley, California. As two of them scooted around on toy cars belonging to our landlords’ son, I observed the following exchange:
Bringing their vehicles to a sudden stop at right angles to each other, one daughter said, “You go ahead.”
To which the other daughter responded, “No, no, you go ahead!”
After they’d repeated this several times, I asked, “Girls, what are you doing?”
“Well, that’s what you always say, Mommy!” they explained.
That’s when I realized the degree to which my daughters have absorbed the anxiety and general distrust I feel while driving in California.