Tuesday, April 01, 2008
I heard on the radio this morning that something like two thirds of all people believe that their cars have personalities, often going as far as naming their cars.

Naming our cars was a big thing back in high school and college. I think it was because the cars we drove back then, like people, were pretty quirky. For many years, now, I have been blessed to drive newer cars that are usually pretty reliable. And, in general, I believe cars are considerably more reliable than they used to be.

I had a friend in college who had an old Bonneville or something that broke down or had flat tires with great regularity. We had a name for it. I can't remember the name but we had a name for it. I had another friend who had a Ventura. I convinced her that "Ventura" was Latin for "King of the Rats".

I do not remember having a name for the car I drove in high school but it was quirky. Every time it rained, I would have to spray the spark plug wires with Wire Drier to make it run. That was annoying but, that car? Well, she had personality.

I like quirky things. Things that are honest. Things that admit that we don't always run on all cylinders -- that our wires may be a little wet and our brakes may be a little squeaky. I respect that and like it.

I guess that I switched gears here from cars to people but those raw things -- our shortcomings and our foibles -- those create personality. They create honesty and authenticity.

Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the fact that these days I have reliable transportation. But, still, my car today doesn't have the personality that my car 25 years ago did when I had to spray the wires every time it rained. Some cars today try to make up for lack of "personality" by having "attitude". That is a big automaker marketing ploy these days -- the "attitude" of their cars.

People try to make up for "personality" with "attitude," too. I don't care much for that. I don't want to go all pop culture on you but one of the American Idol finalists -- Danny Noriega -- tried to have "attitude" instead of "personality". When it came down to brass tacks, it didn't get him very far.

I long for more personality, more honesty, more openness, more authenticity and genuineness ... in cars and people. May I represent those things to the folks I encounter. Goodness knows, I have enough quirks!

  posted at 7:45 AM  

At 12:00 PM, Blogger HeyJules said...

Nice post, Todd!

I think the last person that got away with having "attitude" was Fonzi. Everyone else who spouts an attitude (to me) just seems mean and/or rude.

At 12:06 PM, Blogger Todd M said...

Heehee. So true!


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Todd M


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