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Suicide By Knob
by Jen Lukenbill


Knobs on steering wheels. I swear to God I never knew of this phenomenon until today. Now I'm fascinated. I was working (at a place with a drive-through—we’ll leave it at that), and there was someone parked at said drive-through. The college girl I work with said, "Hey, they have a suicide wheel."  

It took a minute for her comment to sink in, and then I wondered what a suicide wheel was. Did it just… not turn? Was it locked up, ensuring instantaneous death if one had to, say, turn? If so, how could it be that these were legal to sell, but euthanasia is still unacceptable?  

Casually, trying not to show what a morette I was (morette = female moron), I asked, "What's that?"  

She was on me like a bloodhound on whatever bloodhounds are on. A corpse? Whatever. "What do you mean, what's that?" She was incredulous and mocking simultaneously.  

"I mean, WHAT is THAT?" I was the elder here; how did I not know this? Then, inspiration! I looked out at the car. Holy shit! It looked like an Inspector Gadget an 'easy' button in those the big, red "Do Not Touch" button featured in so many cartoons. It was just poking out of the wheel like a big red zit on school picture day. Since I had outed myself as a complete tool, I gave up all pretenses.  

"I have seriously never heard of this," I said, as contritely as possible. "What the hell? Does it turn, do you push it?"  

"No!" she said in the voice of one who is dealing with a very slow person. "It’s like…I'll just look it up so we can get the exact definition."  

A-HA! She didn't know, either! I wasn't the only 'tard in the place.  

The official definition, as located on Urban Dictionary, is: SUICIDE WHEEL: a nob (sic) you put on your steering wheel to make wicked tight turns.

  OH! Wicked tight turns, of course! I had to wonder if anyone had ever taken a particularly wicked tight turn which resulted in a massive crash in which the suicide knob ended up embedded in his or her own head. Is that where the name came from, perhaps? And, if a suicide knob was an acceptable accessory, think of how many more potential violent additions could follow! There could be a “Pimp my Ride” spin-off—maybe “Chuck Norris my Ride” or “Damn, That Ride Hurt!”

Myself, I would like to see a button on the driver’s side which, when pushed, would eject a disruptive passenger. Good times, good times.

The best thing the suicide knob gives me is hope for the future—a future in which our cars really can be tricked out like Kit from Knight Rider. We would have no need to even leave the car, other than to fuel up, which would cost more than the car, I’m sure.  

Drive-through Suicide Knobber, I salute you. Now, watch your head.


© 2006 Jen Lukenbill, All Rights Reserved
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