- Sarah Rose
What Cars Say About the People Who Drive Them
People who drive vans include: Peewee soccer moms. Peewee soccer dads, and Peewee soccer coaches, because 9,248 tiny, multi-colored soccer balls sure as hell can’t fit in a Prius. According to this study conducted by researches at UC Davis regarding why certain people buy certain cars (no, I’m not lying, this is a real study), minivan drivers tend to be calm and are not loners. They enjoy traveling in their van and are more likely to live in the suburbs, be female, homemakers, and between the ages of 41-64. This is the least shocking study result ever published, to date.
Those who drive tiny cars just want to find a goddamn parking spot. Perhaps they’re bad at parallel parking and know that a smaller car=a smaller likelihood of backing into a fire hydrant. The groundbreaking UC Davis study states that small car drivers are pro-environment. Those who choose tiny cars have a broader, more self-deprecating and philanthropic spirit. They don’t see their car as a ticket to freedom, because they are free in mind and spirit, hail king Arthur. They are not typically workaholics because they like to enjoy life and have realized that when they are dead, no one will give care about how much they money they squirreled away beneath their bed “just in case.” Tiny car drivers don’t want to display their wealth with a fancy-schmancy-pretty car, primarily because they cannot afford one.
According to the study, pickup truck drivers don’t like high-density living situations and are more likely to be dissatisfied with their lives. They tend to be workaholics, work full-time in service-related jobs, and fall solidly into the middle class. If you think about it, I doubt you’ve ever seen a regal Madame driving a shiny new Ford F150. People with shit loads of money don’t want a pickup because pickups are associated with manual labor, something the rich find unfathomably despicable. People with trucks also like to back into parking spaces. I am personally offended by this practice because it doesn’t make any fucking sense. There’s a guy who drives a giant pickup who happens to be one of my 87 very-close-knit-without-ever-talking-to-each-other-neighbors, and he’s a chronic backer-in. The nerve.
People who favor a good ole All-American, gas-guzzling SUV are surprisingly, not concerned with environmental conservation. SUV drivers like to travel short distances, probably because their vehicles get shitty mileage. They are likely to be suburbanites aged 40 or younger and are likely to come from a large household with lots of children. SUV drivers like the fact that their car isn’t a truck, but sort of looks like one. They like to imagine running over those small electric cars that are so annoying what with their tiny wheels and high-pitched horns. SUV drivers enjoy their ability to drive alone in a car that comfortably seats six, and have no qualms about asking their friends to drive them places, even though they clearly have the biggest vehicle. Those who live life through the windshield of an SUV are winners, because they tell themselves in the mirror each morning, “You are a winner!” and they buy lots of tchotchkes featuring inspiring slogans. A pen that says, “Seize the Day,” a notepad that says, “She believed she could, so she did,” a koozie that says, “Nothing is impossible,” and decorative flamingo lawn ornaments that squawk “Reach for the Moon!” every time someone walks by.
Mid-Sized Car: Chevrolet Sedan
The authors of the study found that “mid-sized car drivers have no distinct travel attitude, personality, lifestyle, mobility, or travel-liking characteristics.” Owners of mid-sized cars are more likely to receive them as hand-me-downs (because nobody really wants them), be female, and earn higher than average incomes. Interesting. Women are pragmatic, I’ll tell you what, and have zero time for pickup truck driving small-dick men, tiny car hipsters, or wannabe housewife SUV drivers. For the record, I like my mid-sized Ford Taurus because it’s light blue, which makes me feel slightly hip, for no other reason than my old-man car isn’t old-man beige. The seats are comfy, and there’s a handy CD player for all my old Shania Twain and Garth Brooks albums. It also only cost me $4,000 and was previously owned by a very clean, very old man named Gary Wayne. When I found Gary Wayne’s expired registration in the glove box, it was fate. My new car was baptized that day by gray summer, Midwestern skies. I wrote a birth certificate on a piece of construction paper with Crayola crayons, because I’m mature, and from that moment onward, Gary Wayne became my favorite form of transportation.
Luxury Cars: Cadillac or Lexus
For those of you who don’t give two rats asses about cars (yours truly), you probably don’t know what a Cadillac or Lexus even looks like. If you have a car-lover in your life, pay attention to his or her reaction to other vehicles. If they stare, or their mouth falls open, or they make low, throaty orgasm noises, then they probably spotted one of these bad boys. The UC Davis study once again fell short in the shock value department, stating that those who drive luxury cars seek status. They like to drive long distances (to show off their fancy money car) and luxury car owners are likely to be men or retired. Or, retired men (but not Gary Wayne.) Those with high incomes and prestigious degrees are also more likely to drive luxury cars than broke college students or your second grade teacher. I think it’d be fun to see a mail person delivering grocery store flyers and credit card spam in a Lexus. Or to witness a Starbucks barista show up to work one day driving a Cadillac, stepping out of the leathery goodness in a green smock and no-slip shoes. Better yet, I’d like to see animal control use a luxury car to pick up rabbit brains and deer carcasses because I’m all about shock value. And because I’m mad jealous of the rich assholes who can drop 75k on a goddamn box of metal and paint, and who probably aren’t assholes at all, I’m just projecting, because stereotypes.
Sports Cars: BMW, Porsches
I just decided that I will never again coo in admiration when someone says they earned a degree from UC Davis. What the fuck are these people studying? According to the study, people who drive flashy cars are adventure seekers even if they never get out of the car. Sports car drivers are also “not calm,” indicating that perhaps they are perhaps hyperactive, easily excitable, manic, et cetera. Those who drive sports cars are more likely to have a college degree than those who do not, which is really neither here nor there, or anywhere. They are more likely to be what the study calls “emulators,” young, financially unstable, low-self esteem people who buy flashy sports cars that are knock-off luxury cars to emulate actual high-achievers. This makes me sad. More sad than stale saltine crackers or rabbit brains strewn all over the highway.
Car Colors=Meaningful Shit
The UC Davis folks really outdid themselves here. They determined not only what types of people drive certain types of cars, but they dug up an extra anthill and determined what the color of your car says about you. Let’s dive into the deep end, shall we? Unless you can’t swim. If you can’t swim, stay where you are and tell Fred to get you a life buoy. Who’s Fred? It doesn’t matter because he can swim, and you cannot.
Black: If you have a black car, you might have an aggressive personality or tend to be a rebel. Another way you know you’re aggressive is if you punch walls at dinner parties or have premature wrinkles surrounding that giant vein on your forehead that sticks out when you’re agitated, which happens to be, all the time.
Silver: Those who choose to drive a silver car are cool and calm, and “might” be a loner. You’ll know if you’re a loner if you wear headphones in public, even if you’re not listening to anything. Or, if instead of answering the phone when someone calls, you let it ring and then text your friend, “sup?” because the effort of speaking is just too much right now. Or, if you would rather pull each of your fingernails out with your teeth than go to a networking event where you’re expected to make small talk with paunchy businessmen wearing daffy duck ties and mismatched shoes.
Green: Watch out for people who drive green cars, because according to UC Davis, these folks are “reactive.” I’m not sure what this means. Maybe, they react to traffic lights? Seems like an okay trait. Or, they react poorly in stressful situations? “Honey, my water broke!!” “Oh shit, oh man. Ummm okay, well let me just Google what that means…” pops a circus peanut into his mouth, “Oh okay, Google says its best if you remain calm. Can you un-flare your nostrils for me honey?”
Yellow: Those who drive yellow cars are “idealistic,” which means they always look on the bright side of things, even if there is no bright side. These are the people who voted for Bernie Sanders and vote a straight democratic ticket each election even if they don’t know who Tammy Baldwin is, or where she stands regarding the carried interest tax. Additionally, yellow cars always vaguely resemble taxis or bumble bees, which yellow car drivers would argue are “two essential pillars to a functioning democracy—taxis allow all persons the option for free and unrestricted movement, about a city, if they have money, and bumblebees not only pollinate our collective foods, but bring joy to young children nationwide through cartoons such as Winnie the Pooh.”
Blue: If you drive a blue car, you are introspective and cautious. According to Google, you’ll also get a better night’s sleep if you paint your bedroom blue and eat less if you eat off blue dinnerware. If you drive a blue car and you’re not sure if you’re introspective and cautious and have been thinking about whether you are introspective and cautious since reading that first sentence, you probably are. You’ll know that you’re cautious if you get squeamish even thinking about the Grand Canyon—all that empty space to fall into, standing too close to the edge. The Grand Canyon, though a national treasure, is a blue car driver’s worst nightmare.
Red: Red car drivers are full of energy and pizzazz. Isn’t pizzazz the most under-rated word of all time? You might have pizzazz if you act like you’re high on cocaine, but you’re not. Example: dancing wildly alone in your apartment to the soundtrack of Hairspray wearing only your pineapple printed underwear, with the windows open and the shades pulled back, so the world can witness how wonderfully pizzazzy you are. You might have a lot of energy and pizzazz if you can’t sit still for 80 seconds, or if you talk very quickly and people are always telling you to slow down but you can’t because it’s just too boring and you have so much to say.
White: If you drive a white car, you are a gregarious status seeker. This means you’re outgoing and fun to be around, but you’re also likely to annoy all your acquaintances by getting caught up in a pyramid scheme selling Avon products, Herbalife, or Plexus. If you do get caught up in a pyramid scheme, feel free to spam me uncontrollably so I can remove you from my life indefinitely. According to Forbes, white is the most popular color for new vehicles because it denotes prestige and luxury, even if the car itself is not luxurious in the least. I’ve heard on the street that white cars look clean, even when they’re dirty, which is a nice perk for all the lazy status-seekers out there who can’t be bothered to suffer through a 4 minute, 8 dollar car wash.
Cream: Finally, the folks at UC Davis want you to know that those who drive cream colored cars are contained and controlled. Raise your hand if you’ve seen a cream-colored car, ever? For the purposes of this very insightful and entertaining written paragraph, I’m going to go ahead and include brown and beige cars with the cream ones. Brown, beige, and cream all remind me of late 70’s interior decorating, oatmeal, and cardboard boxes. There is a reason these neutral tones are popular among retirees and spies. As they say at the nursing home: once you go beige, you’ve only got a solid 18 months of driving left before cataracts sink in and your license is revoked. If any of you, dear readers, see a cream-colored car, covertly take a picture and tweet me at @sarahmac_attack to prove once and for all, that they exist.
If you’d like to contest the results of this prestigious and lucrative UC Davis study, write a strongly worded letter and send it to me so I can fully ascertain how crazy you are.