I was trying to think of other weird little memories, and I came up with this: when I was a small fry, I’d stand on the car seat next to my mother as she ran errands about town. I think most kids did this in the period. The slightest unanticipated brake pressure could send you tumbling into the dashboard. The unpadded dashboard. It seems no one ever caught on; it was an unquestioned practice until seat belts became ubiquitous. However, every parent did develop a reflex of the right arm, which would shoot straight out at the same moment the least pressure was applied to the brake pedal. This, it was hoped, would slow the kid’s forward momentum at least a little. How any of us survived into adulthood is a mystery.