What the hell is the point of a stick shift? Seriously. I don't just eat for nourishment -- I enjoy a good meal, but I DO just drive because no one has invented a usable teleportation pod yet. So, why the hell do I wanna work any more than I have to at driving?
I've driven stick (not well) at various points in my life and I've just never embraced the idea. I've heard the, "It puts you more in touch with the road," crap before. We have automatic transmissions now, let's (expletive removed by Brenna) use them. Having to concentrate on shifting should not part of driving, it's a distraction. Steering? Yes. Braking? Of course. Shifting? No.
We're not allowed to talk on our cell phones or read while we're driving, and we shouldn't be expected to shift either. When we leased the car with a manual transmission I thought, "Well, most cars in Europe aren't automatic." Now I think, "Well most people in Europe are WRONG!" It's like preferring a sundial to a watch, 8-track to CD or worse, PC to MAC. I suppose if you've only ever known waking up in the middle of the night and going to an outhouse to pee, you might not miss indoor plumbing, but let me tell you, I miss my automatic transmission.