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Lisa Scottoline: Built Ford Tough

Everybody talks about how men love cars. But so do women. Especially this woman. I even love trucks. I know you're surprised. You thought I was a highly cultured member of the literati.

Everybody talks about how men love cars.

But so do women.

Especially this woman.

I even love trucks.

I know you're surprised. You thought I was a highly cultured member of the literati.

Oh, wait. You didn't think that?


Because what I really am is a lady who writes books for a living and lives on a farm with a bunch of crazy animals - Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, cats, chickens, and horses, plus one incontinent corgi, which is a different species altogether.

By the way, if that sounds great to you, it absolutely is. It's my life's dream, made possible by the support of my beloved readers, and believe me when I tell you that I thank God for you every day.

No kidding.

And the best thing about living on a farm is that it gives me an excuse to drive a truck. And not only that, but it's a very butch truck, which might be redundant.

It's a cherry-red Ford F-150 with a three-quarter-ton engine, which is powerful enough to pull a horse trailer or get me to the library.

I have to tell you, it's fun to drive around in a truck, feeling big, powerful, and generally manly. I fill its tank with gas and testosterone.

I like knowing that I can move anything I have to, and I love lending it to people when they need a truck. Because I have a truck, and I can do anything!

People always say to me, you have a truck?

I nod happily. You can have a truck, a brain, and ovaries - all at the same time.

They're not mutually exclusive.

Plus, my truck has a snowplow on the front and a dump bed in the back, which makes it more fun to play with. It's cool to press a button to dump things out, especially if it's a load of horse manure.

Are you completely disillusioned yet?

And I never have more fun than when I'm plowing snow from my driveway in wintertime, with the radio blasting and a hot cup of coffee fogging up the windows. I will never forget the year when I got carried away and ended up plowing my whole street.

Nothing will make you feel as unstoppable as a snowplow.

I promise, you'll end up praying for snow.

Sometimes, I think driving a truck is empowerment on wheels.

Again, not even kidding.

Maybe you're secure enough and you don't need it, but I do. From time to time, I need to be reminded that I have strength and power, especially when there are setbacks. The world throws us curveballs. A friend falls ill. Somebody breaks your heart. You don't get the job you wanted.

Life can be hard and unfair, and you have to persevere.

Whenever I need bucking up, I truck up.

I take a drive around the block.

It's a way to remind my body what powerful feels like, and even though it's external, swathing me in Ford-tough military-grade steel, I can recall that feeling later, like muscle memory.

I feel the same way when I ride a horse. I'm sure there's not a woman in the world who doesn't stand a little taller after she gets out of a truck or off a horse.

And if you haven't had those experiences, I bet you feel that way after you work out or go for a run. Or after yoga.

Or after whatever you do to remind yourself that you're stronger than you think.

I'm thinking about trucks now because mine is 15 years old and needs to be replaced. It's dripping gunk and doing other undesirable things, and I'm going to miss it. But it gives me the chance to go truck shopping, which, for this girl, is almost as much fun as shoe shopping.

Trucks are high heels with four-wheel drive.

So here's my advice for when the going gets rough.

Do whatever it takes to make you stand taller.

And go forward.

Women are built Ford tough.

Look for Lisa and Francesca's latest humor collection, "I've Got Sand in All the Wrong Places," and Lisa's new novel, "Damaged," in stores now.