In their case, I think the lesson wasn't the one they were expecting.
I had, apparently, been acting up or fussing about something. Whatever it was, my father said something like, "If you don't stop, I'm going to make you get out of the car."
I didn't, and he did.
Where we were was a commercial part of town — not a highway, exactly, but sort of a highway — with stores on either side. It was night time. My guess is the plan was to make me get out of the car, drive a short distance away, then come back and get me. I guess I was supposed to be so scared that I'd actually been left that I'd never misbehave in the car again.
Unfortunately, no one had given me the script, and I didn't play my part.
I can't remember what store my parents dropped me off in front of, but I remember vividly the one that was a couple of doors down: it sold boats and boating supplies. It looked interesting, so I walked over there.
Meanwhile, my parents drove off a little ways, turned around, and came back to hear the tearful apologies from their thoroughly chastened son.
Except I wasn't there. Nor was I in the store where they'd dropped me off. Or the one next to it.
When they finally found me, after half an hour of frantic searching, they had forgotten the lesson they were trying to teach. (I'm sure my lack of contrition and puzzlement at their frantic faces was part of the problem.)
The lesson I learned? Parents get really angry and upset when you look at boats.
I have yet to teach that lesson to my own children.