April 12, 2024 at 12:54 am

Friend Saves A Family Road Trip When He’s Finally Allowed To Speak Up Amidst The Family Chaos

by Chris Allen

Source: Reddit/Malicious Compliance

Family car trips in the 80s / 90s: about as American as it ever got.

Driving through the parts of a state that no one ever goes to.

No tablets, screens or internet.

Just good old fashioned yelling from Mom & Dad.

This is a hilarious story about a big win from the friend stuck in the middle.

And how they saved the cross country road trip.

Want Me to Shut Up? OK, Argue about it till you give up. Then I’ll fix it.

This is from the summer between Freshman and Sophomore year, circa 1989 about 15yo. This is my best recollection of events.

One of my best friends was going on summer vacation with his mom and dad (only child) and they let him invite a friend to go with him so he wasn’t alone.

They were headed to see the grand canyon with the final destination being Las Vegas. We were driving from South Louisiana.

That’s a loooong drive in this.

And then the volume inside…yikes.

We were riding in a Lincoln Town Car for the trip, circa 1988. This car had the type of trunk where you’d close the trunk and it would latch about 2″ above the deck and then a motor would pull it down the rest of the way tightly closing it. They would open it by hitting the trunk release which was a button in the glove box.

This friend’s parents were known to argue. We’ll call them Mr. Friend’s Dad (MFD) and Mrs. Friend’s Mom (MFM). They would get into shouting matches just about anything.

My friend had learned to just be quiet when this happened, but I didn’t have to do that with my parents so I wasn’t used to that.

Finally out of the tin can, they had trunk issues.

They had planned to stay at little hotels on the way and we were probably somewhere in Texas the first night, when we arrived in the evening at our hotel. They popped the trunk by hitting the release in the glove box and we got out to start getting our bags to take them inside, but when they tried to lift the trunk lid, it was still latched.

My friends dad tried hitting the release button again. He tried pushing the trunk closed again to start over, but the motor wasn’t taking it down. He tried looking under the trunk lid in the 2″ gap to see if he could loosen the latch manually.

Meanwhile, I had an idea I thought could fix the problem. I kept trying to say my idea while he was checking all of his fixes.

Thankfully OP gave us a script read out of what that exchange sounded like.

Me: “MFD, why don’t…”

MFD: “Quiet! I’m trying to think here!”

After he tried a couple of things, the arguing started between Mom and Dad. They argued about,

“What are we going to do? We can’t get our luggage. Do we get something to break it open? But then we can’t keep it closed to travel. Should we call a tow truck?” etc…

OP kept persisting, and was met with a brick wall.

I tried to give my solution and was shut down every time, ending eventually with a,

MFD & MFM “Shut up! Y’all go sit in the car.”

So, we did.

A few minutes later they came and got in the car and told us, “we’re going to have to cancel the trip and just drive home through the night.”

As the noise of crickets grew, he finally had the opening to pipe up.

As it got quiet and I finally felt like I could talk, I said, “Why don’t you just use the key?”

There was a notable pause as the idea started to sink in.

“Oh my goodness… that’s so smart!” MFM said as they both hopped out trying the key.

The trunk opened right up.

The apologies abounded.

They came back in the car after a couple minutes and apologized to me for yelling and told us we can get our bags and keep going on the trip. For the rest of the trip, the motor part of the trunk didn’t work to pull it all the way closed, but we were, though able to continue.

The trunk would latch and hold 2″ above being completely closed and the key worked to open it. We just hoped there wouldn’t be any rain in the desert.

Ok this sounds like it turned out to be a fantastic trip, though.

We got to hike into the grand canyon for about an hour down which took 2 hours to come back up and got far enough we could barely see the Colorado River in a space between two crevices. We drove over the Hoover Dam and in Las Vegas.

We stayed at Circus Circus which at the time had a kids section full of arcade games and other attractions. Every time MFD or MFM would win at the slots they’d give us more money to spend. 🙂

All in all it was a fun trip.

I’ll say!

Sounds like OP was the actual hero there.

Let’s see what folks had to say.

One person was just as perplexed about these absolute quitters as I was.

Source: Reddit/Malicious Compliance

Another person recalls how cool Circus Circus was.

Source: Reddit/Malicious Compliance

One Redditor remembers their very similar car.

Source: Reddit/Malicious Compliance

While one commenter was just shocked at any kind of apology from the parents.

Source: Reddit/Malicious Compliance

All’s well that ends well!

If you thought that was an interesting story, check out what happened when a family gave their in-laws a free place to stay in exchange for babysitting, but things changed when they don’t hold up their end of the bargain.