The Car Makes the Man

26 Jun

Credit: Meme Center

I was at the grocery store the other day when I watched a ’97 Camero with tinted windows hastily pull into a handicapped parking space. As I waited for the driver to get out, I immediately formed an image of what I thought he or she might look like. I came up with: male, 25-35, bad fake tan, a sweatband on his forearm, aviator sunglasses, and a spandex Under Armour shirt which prominently displayed his nipples. I got 5 out of the 6 right; I should have known people wouldn’t be wearing sunglasses this time of year. Rookie mistake!

This got me thinking as to whether or not you can accurately predict a man’s characteristics and/or lifestyle based solely on his car. Sure, there are vehicles which are obvious predictors of things such as wealth or the need for speed, but can you tell more about someone from his ride than just how much money he’s got in the bank? I called my high-ranking friends at the CDC, FBI, CIA, TSA and NKOTB to see if they would assist in gathering data, but I got a lot of dial tones. On the upside, I’m pretty sure I’m on some “Watch Lists” now!

Not one to be deterred, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I gathered my materials and performed highly scientific research in one of the most prestigious labs in the world: a Safeway parking lot. My findings (after 30 minutes and a bag of beef jerky) are as follows:

Mercedes Convertible: Racks up divorces, has a young Asian girlfriend, owns penny loafers

Volvo Wagon: Wears tighty whities, most likely works in finance, exudes less sexual energy than a used Brillo Pad

Prius: Owns multiple pairs of cargo shorts/pants, has signed over 150 petitions in his lifetime, loves to drive at least 10 miles under the speed limit

BMW M Class: Sports a tan George Hamilton would be jealous of, has impossibly white teeth, thinks Ed Hardy is a fashion genius

Hummer: Watches too much UFC, has a tribal tattoo on his bicep, acts as Lord of the Douchebag Kingdom

Lincoln Town Car: Senior citizen OR ruthless mobster (a roomy trunk is important to both groups)

Subaru Outback: Hails from the Pacific Northwest, owns a kayak, listens to bands like Mumford & Sons and Fleet Foxes

Lowered Honda Civic: Spiky hair, wears oversized Fubu jeans, uses words like “yo” and “shawty” without being ironic

The new Volkswagen Beetle, PT Cruiser or a Mini Cooper: Is a fellow who likes fellows

Kia Soul: A hamster

Cadillac Escalade: wears flashy gold jewelry, dabbles in street pharmacology, listens to music at extremely high volumes

Minivan: A dad, has a cell phone belt clip, thinks fanny packs are “really functional belts”

Pickup truck: Drinks Bud Light, card-carrying member of the NRA, always makes sure to have a tool set on hand in case of a siding/window/electrical/flooring/plumbing emergency

A windowless van: Most definitely a predator

Volkswagen (Type 2) Bus: Grateful Dead fan, looks like Tommy Chong, lives down by a river

Porsche Boxter: Spends more money than he makes, has a serious fear of aging, his house is decorated in 80′s art deco

Audi A6: Has watched one too many Jason Statham movies, wears turtleneck sweaters, drives like he’s a stunt double from “The Fast and the Furious”

’67 Mustang: A TOTAL BADASS

I’m sure there are men out there thinking, “Hey, I drive a Mini Cooper and I’m SUPER DUPER heterosexual!” Uh-huh. Women are proclaiming, “My husband drives a Volvo and he’s a sex machine.” Right. Look, don’t get your knickers in a twist. This was a research study conducted in a parking lot while I chomped on dried beef. Take from that what you will.

Not everyone fits their “car mold” perfectly, but I do believe cars can attract a certain type of personality. I give you Exhibit A: I once saw a 1970 AMC Gremlin on the road and thought it looked like a really cool car. I think that pretty much tells someone everything they’d need to know about me.

I’m not advocating that we all jump to conclusions about people we haven’t had the opportunity to get to know. Just as someone who drives a “jerk car” can be the nicest guy you’ll ever meet, a guy who drives a less than impressive ride can be the biggest asshat you’ll ever meet. It’s good to have some fun with the theories I’ve stated above, but it’s best not to judge someone based on their car alone. Well, unless he’s driving a Hummer. In that case, he is most definitely the Lord of the Douchebag Kingdom.

This piece originally published on Expats Post

65 Responses to “The Car Makes the Man”

  1. Maggie O'C 06/26/2012 at 9:46 am #

    Your fellow Portlander LOVES this. Signed over 150 petitions in his lifetime…hahahaha

  2. unpackedwriter 06/26/2012 at 9:47 am #

    Hilarious play on stereotypes!!! Almost makes me want to gnaw on raw beef and hang out in parking lots… but I’d probably get my knickers in a twist thinking about how well your wrote this and all the other things I have to do! Great little everyday expose! Thanks, Renee

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:06 am #

      I highly recommend doing it if for nothing else than to get your intake of protein.

  3. Simon 06/26/2012 at 9:53 am #

    This is the best thing I have read in a while. Total Badass. I couldn’t find my ride in your list though. ’96 Corolla with a dented fender and a set of truck nuts that drag on the ground. Great stuff Jen

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:07 am #

      A pair of truck nuts on a Corolla? You’re a GAME CHANGER.

  4. speaker7 06/26/2012 at 10:02 am #

    “Gene Wilder will call you out on your small penis”
    Best. Tag. Ever.

  5. Dani Heart 06/26/2012 at 10:10 am #

    I can’t believe you admitted to liking a Gremlin. LOL LOL LOL LOL peeking through hands….I thought the AMC Pacer was the coolest car ever. LOL LOL LOL LOL I really enjoyed this little experiment and I am in total agreement about Hummer drivers. LOL

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:14 am #

      I have NO shame, remember? And it sort of makes sense that I’d like an AMC Gremlin since it’s the reject of the car world. I like a good underdog story ;)

  6. Fred 06/26/2012 at 10:23 am #

    It’s everyone’s duty when seeing a Hummer to smash the window and slash its tires.

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:14 am #

      AGREED! I really don’t understand why people even buy these cars. What is the point, really?

      • Fred 07/05/2012 at 2:20 pm #

        Douchebags buy them thinking it’s a status symbol.

  7. writerwendyreid 06/26/2012 at 10:32 am #

    Jenn, this was hilarious but now I’m totally confused about my own personality (I know this was done based on men….but hell, I drive!) I have owned lowered hondas and acuras, am now driving a stock prelude with nice mags and a kick ass sound system (which is usually screaming hip hop, rap or dubstep from my 8 speakers) and aspire to buy a brand new green kia soul…lol.

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:15 am #

      It sounds like you’re every man’s fantasy!

      • writerwendyreid 07/05/2012 at 5:13 pm #

        lol…now just point me to the fountain of youth and I’ll be all set! :-)

  8. Maylin - InkerLabyrinth 06/26/2012 at 11:20 am #

    This post is pure awesomeness! I drive a Tracker & I’m the coolest chick ever… I should really be driving a mini cooper or a ’67 Stang but life thinks is funny lol…

    My BF drive a 150 Ford pick up… He’s tough shit… You know, comic books and shit… Real bad ass!

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:16 am #

      A ’67 Mustang is my ultimate dream car. I think they’re so sexy, especially when a woman drives one. You’d look SLICK behind the wheel!

  9. Main Street Musings Blog 06/26/2012 at 11:59 am #

    And don’t forget — Lexus: menopause! Jen, you have to read this–it proves we are cut from the same cloth! http://thealternativepress.com/articles/are-you-what-you-drive

  10. Just Rambling 06/26/2012 at 12:14 pm #

    Seriously, thanks Jen. This is so good. From now on I will only have to check the car to see if I like the guy. You made life so much easier!

  11. Brigitte 06/26/2012 at 1:58 pm #

    This was so freakin’ hilarious. Lord of the Douchebag Kingdom — soooooo good. You forgot the yellow original-type Corvette….gold chain, wife beater tee, acid washed jeans, longish hair and dark (Grecian Formula) and a orangey bronze tan. Just saw one.

    You should write a book about this as a guide for women. This was so funny, Jen.

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:18 am #

      AH! How could I forget about that? You’re so right!! Is there anything more disgusting than a guy wearing a gold chain? I don’t think so.

  12. calahan 06/26/2012 at 4:19 pm #

    I lease a car, does that mean I have a fear of commitment?

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:19 am #

      Absolutely. If you also rent your furniture, I think you’re beyond repair.

  13. A Single Parent's Life 06/26/2012 at 5:31 pm #

    Love the post. It’s funny me and a guy friend were just talking about this a while back. I have 2 Ford Expeditions and I was telling him that with in a year I want to have a Ford Excursion. He keeps telling me I need a mini van because of gas and things. I want the Excursion because I can still seat 8 people and have the cargo room. I really need that with the kids. He laughed at me and said you know most the time when guys want a bigger truck it’s because they have small junk. What would you say about a women who wants something bigger. I told him I didn’t know. Maybe you should do a study on women and their cars. I would forward it to him for sure lol.

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:22 am #

      Someone else suggested doing a study on women’s cars. I just may have to do that.

      I find that men who drive big cars are making up for what’s lacking, but a woman who drives a big car is asserting the dominance she DEFINITELY has. I have a rule: don’t screw with a suburban filled with kids on their way to soccer practice. Mommy will have no problem ramming you if she thinks you’ll make her late.

      • A Single Parent's Life 07/05/2012 at 12:18 pm #

        Everyone laughs at me all the time when I am driving. I will not back down when other cars try to cut me off or pull out in front of me. I tell them I’m much bigger than they are they aren’t going to win they will stay over there or get out of the way. Besides they are at fault if there is an accident they can buy me a new truck today if they really want too.

  14. JAC 06/27/2012 at 6:30 am #

    I love this. I know this guy who’s a big shot attorney and makes over 500K a year. However, he drives a beat-up rusty Bonneville from the 90’s. I can’t make sense of this, but it bugs the hell out of me. Any thoughts on what this says about him? You’re good at this!

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:27 am #

      There’s only one of three reasons he’d be driving it: (1) Sentimental value or (2) He drives it to make it appear that he isn’t really overcharging his clients or (3) Cheap.

      I’d guess he’s the kind of guy who would take you to a Sizzler on a first date with a 2-for-1 coupon.

  15. Viciously Sweet 06/27/2012 at 2:01 pm #

    OMG. Jen I play this game too. I do it while stuck in traffic on the freeway. And in the LA area, this is the only thing that makes the freeway not a cavalcade from hell. I cannot believe how absolutely correct you are with your guesses. I call the people in the windowless vans “just straight up murderers” and I think I want to see the Miami Vice style house of the person with the Boxter this is how I imagine it looking:
    http://activerain.com/image_store/uploads/6/8/7/4/6/ar117441774064786.jpg

  16. Janene 06/28/2012 at 8:36 am #

    I love this post. I remember it the first time and I still laughed just as hard the second time around!

  17. Kimmie 06/29/2012 at 2:52 pm #

    Kia soul= hamster made me pee…luckily I am reading your blog whilst on the toilet

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:30 am #

      First, I loved that you used the word “whilst” because people don’t really use it enough.

      Second, not surprising you were on the toilet. It’s only surprising you weren’t also dropping a deuce.

  18. Brian Westbye 06/30/2012 at 7:16 pm #

    I hate dick Cameros and I hate dick Camero drivers driving their dick cars and parking in handicap spots like flaming dicky dicks.

  19. Stacie Chadwick 07/01/2012 at 2:53 pm #

    Love this! What about a 2004 Yukon XL?

    • Jen and Tonic 07/05/2012 at 10:33 am #

      I’d guess the kind of guy who is powerful in his everyday life, but who likes to have someone gnaw on his butt cheeks in private.

      • Stacie Chadwick 07/05/2012 at 1:50 pm #

        That’s what I drive and you totally nailed my personality. You don’t read tarot cards by chance, do you?

  20. Stacie Chadwick 07/01/2012 at 2:53 pm #

    And love the new header too. =)

  21. El Guapo 07/05/2012 at 5:29 am #

    I drive a 99 Explorer that gets me from point A to point B.
    Most of the time.
    Sort of.

  22. Carolina Courtland 07/05/2012 at 6:21 pm #

    OMG. This is so awesome!

    “exudes less sexual energy than a used Brillo Pad” LMAO

  23. allywish 07/10/2012 at 3:36 pm #

    I snorted quietly all the way through this very entertaining read. I owned a Lincoln Town Car when I was 22 – what can I say it was FREE – and I can attest to the roomy trunk. Luckily I was never pulled over and searched.

  24. Kate 07/11/2012 at 4:09 pm #

    I had to share some SNL news: “So they discontinued the hummer… Now people will have to go door to door to let others know they’re assholes” -unknown
    Come to find out- one of the girls happened to want a Pink Hummer, but currently drives a football themed Mini-Cooper with “carlashes” and a license plate that reads her name! I’m still recovering from that visit.
    I think you should follow up with part 2 about women and their cars. You can start with a Pink Corvette and Lifted Trucks.

    Write on!

  25. Stacie Chadwick 07/13/2012 at 8:24 pm #

    Just a quick hello. I thought WP dropped me from your blog or something b/c you haven’t written in awhile. Get back to it JandT!

    • Jen and Tonic 07/16/2012 at 4:19 pm #

      I know, I know…I’ve been super busy with personal and work stuff, but that’s no excuse. I have brilliant followers to impress!

  26. transparentguy 07/20/2012 at 4:36 pm #

    Among the many cool cars I have owned, the Ford Pinto station wagon is tied neck-and-neck with the honey-dijion beauty of the AMC Eagle station wagon. At least the Pinto had the added excitement of possibly exploding upon impact.

  27. Stacie Chadwick 07/22/2012 at 8:16 pm #

    Ummmmmm….WHERE are you?

    • Jen and Tonic 07/23/2012 at 5:24 pm #

      I’ve been taken captivity by young, buff men in loincloths who make a mean Eggs Benedict. My sincerest apologies.

      • Stacie Chadwick 07/23/2012 at 9:32 pm #

        I would say how sorry I felt for you, but that sounds awesome! LMK if you need anyone to freshly squeeze your, ummmm, juice.

  28. asoulwalker 08/12/2012 at 8:43 pm #

    This is an amazing piece of scientific research.

    • Jen and Tonic 08/12/2012 at 9:58 pm #

      After writing this, I’m insulted that NASA didn’t ask me to be a part of the Mars project.

      • asoulwalker 08/13/2012 at 9:41 am #

        Budget cuts… NASA basically got laid off recently… but the rise of private space firms could prove beneficial to your cause…

  29. feelingchipper 08/13/2012 at 4:48 am #

    My partner drives an Outback…and rocks out to Mumford and Sons. No kayak though, but I’m sure he dreams of them.

  30. Aimee 08/27/2012 at 5:39 pm #

    Lord of the Douchebag Kingdom…I love it!! What do you suppose a gray Toyota Corrolla says about you????

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