Click either
to view a
larger version

  Valerie Daniels   Don Daniels
  Valerie's form of 'assistance' came at about the 3/4 point in the assembly line when the car was sufficiently built and connected enough to undergo initial electronic system testing.  This is actually the first time the car is started when it is simply connected to a computer that performs myriad system checks.  Valerie's job/honor was to spank life into the car by striking it's starter button for the very first time.

It should be noted that at this point in the assembly line one of the tasks is to pull out and discard [or recycle?] the retainer pin that until here has prevented the front wheels from ever turning from their required straight-ahead position.  Shortly after we and the car arrived at this step, the operator in charge took the pin out of our car-to-be and gave it to Valerie as a souvenir. 

As it happened, the mid-afternoon break occurred right then, so we went over to one of the break room benches to pass the time.  Valerie remarked that she was wearing a thin gold chain that she had recently inherited from my Mother and wondered if the pin could be attached to the chain as a pendant.  Although it was discovered that the chain's clasp was just slightly too large to fit through the existing hole in the pin, we were able to jury-rig a way for the pin to hang neatly from the chain.

So, as Valerie was being invited (by the same worker who had given her the pin) to 'assist' in this birthing process, he lit up with delight when he saw the pin so proudly displayed, with both sides thus being validated for their graciousness toward the other.
  Don's contribution to the birthing process came at the extreme end of the line when he started the car so that, for the very first time, it could move off under its own power.  He then had the honor of accompanying the car through its initial journey onto the dynamometer for high speed testing, through the water immersion room for leak and other checking, and out into the sunny world outside for initial accelleration, braking, reverse, and synthetic and natural road hazard effects tests.