I've never understood the concept of owning an impractical car just for fun. If I had enough disposable income to purchase a ridiculously expensive "toy," I figure I could do more meaningful and important things with it (like invest in my personal flip-flop fetish). How much use can a mommy get out of a two-seat convertible?

The only way to fully test the 2005 Chrysler Crossfire roadster is to force myself and my closest friends to take a mom's night out. Scheduling a night when we all have husbands or baby sitters home to watch the kids is quite a chore.

We obviously can't all ride in the roadster, and I'm worried that a catfight might ensue over who gets shotgun. My friends manage some civility, and the evening begins by dishing out directions to the hottest new restaurant in town.

Although rain clouds loom overhead, we take our chances and put the top down (for the sake of thorough journalism only - it has nothing to do with our desire to turn heads). Chrysler says the top opens in 22 seconds (I count 25), but either way we're on the road quickly.

A stop at Starbucks holds us over during the long wait for a table on a Friday night. I try to find cupholders, and after pushing and prodding different compartments, something that resembles a cupholder emerges from the center console. We get a good laugh at how puny it is, but let's get serious - it fits a grande iced soy chai tea, and that's all that really matters.

The drive to the restaurant proves quite entertaining. Acceleration in this vehicle is peppy and responsive, and it's just plain fun to drive (never thought I'd say that again after a recent 10-hour car trip with my two toddlers).

We finally make it to the restaurant, after shouting over wind noise to fill each other in on the latest gossip. I quickly realize that the hour it took me to curl my hair was in vain, because it's now just a tangled mess. The price we women pay! Lucky for me I had the foresight to stash a hair brush in one of the mesh door pockets.

Although the center console storage compartment locks along with the doors, I'm too protective of my new Norah Jones CD to leave the car parked with the top down. So up it goes again.

After dinner and dancing, we decide to call it a night. Driving home at 1 a.m. in a convertible is a bit chilly. That's where the seat heaters come in handy. The crisp, cool air paired with a toasty warm derriere make for a lovely night drive.

The pleasant ride stops abruptly when I notice flashing red and blue lights in the rearview mirror. Did I mention how fast the Crossfire is? Driving it makes 70 mph feel like 50. I guess this car really is too hot for my own good (as my husband mentioned before I left for the evening). The party ends with my first speeding ticket since I was a teenager.

Ticket aside, I had a fabulous time using this car as an excuse for a night out on the town with girlfriends. I now understand why someone would want a fun little car like this. It's a youthful thrill to jump in on a moment's notice and not worry about sitting on goldfish crackers. The passenger's seat is equipped with Latch connectors for those of you in a pinch and daring enough to strap a car seat in (you'd have to turn off the airbag first).

All in all, the 2005 Chrysler Crossfire roadster adds a new dimension to mom's night out. I highly recommend every overworked and stressed out mother make time for a night out with friends, even if you have to do it without the Crossfire (although it's much more fun with).

*For more information on the Chrysler Crossfire and its safety features, visit www.cars.com.