Skylar received his first piece of mail today. It was from a company
offering him savings of hundreds of dollars on his current car insurance
bill. I opened the letter and decided to give them a call.
Unity Insurance Brokers. This is Jim. How I can meet your
insurance needs today?
Id like to insure my sons car, I tell the cheery voice on the
other end of the line.
What is your sons name?
Is he under 25 years of age?
This is one of those times youll wish your boy was a girl, says
Jim in his chummy, Ive-been-there-too voice. He isnt
married perchance, is he?
Not to my knowledge.
Too bad. Young unmarried males collectively have the worst
driving records. Ill get you the lowest rate possible, but it may
not seem like it.
I appreciate your effort, I say.
Lets start with the car. How much did you pay for it?
Yeah, you cant buy a cheap car these days. I just bought one
myself for 17. And it didnt even come with a radio. Did you
get a decent color?
Bright blue with a red back.
I got stuck with brown. Do you want comprehensive coverage?
Thats where we total out the car if its stolen or vandalized beyond
What kind of deductible do you want?
Not more than I paid for the car, I say.
Thats funny, says Jim. He doesnt have any assets to
protect, does he?
How about this: well take a high deductible and give him the minimum
medical coverage and see what the lowest rate we can get him is. You
can always drop the deductible later if you want.
That sounds fine to me.
Now how long has your son been driving?
About two weeks.
Has he been in any accidents?
Yes, I said, four.
Four? repeats Jim in disbelief. What kind of accidents?
Lets see, first he crashed the car
He crashed the car? What condition is the car in?
There was no real damage, I say. Its fairly
indestructible. Oh yeah, then there was the time he flipped the car
over and scraped his knee
Flipped the car over?
and after that he backed into me and I fell, almost breaking my
He hit you with the car?
Well, I admit, it was kind of my fault. I saw him coming
and didnt get out of the way fast enough. Hes still learning
how to stop.
These numbers dont look good, says Jim, typing nervously.
How bad are they? I ask.
Sir, says Jim, you dont make this much in a year.
More typing. Look. Lets see what discounts we can get
you. Theres the multicar discount. How many other cars
could you put on this policy?
That would give you a 15% discount.
Is that a lot? I ask.
You dont want to know how much. Did your son take Drivers
Ed in school?
Actually, Skylar is self-taught.
You mean he practices in parking lots?
Wherever he can.
You might consider having him take the class. Because of the
accidents he doesnt qualify for the 10% Good Driver discount, but if he
takes the class hell be able to get the 10% Drivers Training
Are there any other discounts?
Does the car have anti-lock brakes?
What about passive restraints? You know, seat belts that lock
The car doesnt have a seat belt, I say.
Is this a new car?
It was brand new when I bought it.
And it didnt come with seat belts?
Are you still there? I ask.
Sir, Im sorry. The computer is telling me I cant insure
But your letter promised me savings of hundreds of dollars.
Have you considered buying your son a bicycle?
He doesnt like wearing a helmet.
Sir, crackle, crackle, I cant hear you, crackle, crackle, the
The line goes dead.
I look down to see Skylar playing mischievously with the now disconnected
What do you think youre doing? I ask him as I take the cord out
of his mouth and pick him up.
I cant wait until Skylar gets his first guaranteed credit card