Photo from a very cool ad campaign for a library
I am here to share a cautionary tale.
Once upon a time, there was a reasonably intelligent writer-type who happened to have grown up in New York City (Manhattan, to be precise), where driving is unnecessary, and owning a car -- let alone trying to park the damn thing -- is actually a burden. Once, when this writer-type was a child, someone asked her what color her family's car was, and after some thought, she replied "Yellow." Neither of her parents had a license, and her mother had never learned how to drive.
And still, there came a time in this young writer's life when driving seemed like a Thing To Do. A universally-required Life Skill To Be Learned, even. So, she bravely went down to the RMV to obtain a learner's permit. This permit would be granted upon the correct answering of 18 out of 25 multiple choice questions, most of which were insulting to said writer-type's intelligence. For example, "What color is a stop sign?" The writer-type additionally has a history of handling standardized testing quite well (see, e.g., SAT, LSAT, NY bar exam, MA bar exam).
HOWEVER. This writer-type is also 36. Therefore, when preparing for this exam she thoughtlessly skipped the section on Junior Operator Licenses and the rules governing the drivers holding such licenses, who are exclusively between the ages of 16.5 and 18. "I'm thirty-f*cking-six," she said to herself, "None of this will ever apply to me."
The computer that chose her 25 questions, however, had no way of knowing if she was 17 or 77. And so, the computer (and possibly the gods of hubris) "randomly" chose a large number of questions regarding the rules of drivers in possession of Junior Operator Licenses, with an additional emphasis on the non-intuitive state-specific penalties for underage drinking and driving, drag racing, and driving past curfew without being accompanied by a parent. This very clever writer-type then failed her driver's permit exam, much to her embarrassment and annoyance, and her husband's great amusement.
This writer-type learned her lesson. She proceeded to restudy the driver's manual, reading everything in it, no matter how random it seemed to her at the time, which was a good move, because the next day she was able to retake and pass her learner's permit exam despite the bizarrely disproportionate number of questions about motorcycle safety. She tells this story so that you will also READ EVERYTHING (such as, perhaps, any submission guidelines when querying or submitting a short story to a lit mag for consideration), so that you will not be similarly embarrassed or annoyed, or have to pay another $30 exam fee plus babysitting costs to sit in the f*cking RMV for 4 hours on a busy Friday in order to rectify one's sloppy mistakes.
Hypothetically speaking, of course.