I Judge People Based on their Car Selection
Yesterday I saw a white Honda Civic or what I thought was a Civic. It might have been an old Mustang or some other older model of white car that people had in 1992. It was lowered and had a big, fat exhaust that made a lot of noise. I immediately hated whomever was driving. I'm so judgmental. I was by myself so I couldn't turn to anyone and say, "Good Lord, what a douche." So, I just thought it on my own. I even made up jokes in my head about how 1992 called and wants its ghetto car back. Why is it ever cool to have a loud exhaust? Why is it ever cool to have your radio on blaring out rap music and cuss words at stop lights? You're white and you live in the suburbs, you idiot. Turn that shit down or move further south. You're a douche and you look like a wanna be gangster moron in your stupid old car that you think makes you look cool. I hate you.
And then I remembered my yoga breathing and took deep breaths.
The calm side of my personality tells me that people should be able to drive any car they want without people judging them. For instance, when I see men driving gigantic trucks that make a lot of noise I think they are trying to prove how fuckin manly they are and I'm a little sad for them. We get you're a dude. Now Shut up. I had a boyfriend once who was not manly, in fact, I'm pretty sure he was flaming ass gay, but one day he bought a big, big truck. I had to count to 3 and taking a heaving leap upward to get in the damn thing. He looked like a Q-Tip driving it with his tiny gay head just barely above the giant steering wheel. But if gay men want to drive giant trucks they should be able to with no hassle or negative thoughts about how ridiculous they look. You can't hide your gayness by buying a big truck. "Hey, do you think Boyd is gay?" "No way, he has a big truck."
Then I try to think of all the scenarios why someone would think it's a good idea to look like an asshole in the car they drive. Maybe the person in the Honda couldn't afford a car and the only car he/she could afford was the ghetto Honda from 1992. Maybe it's a pregnant lady on food stamps who needs to get to her stripper job so she can pay for college. Maybe the creepy sales man took her to the back lot where all the poor people cars wait for poor people and there it is, the white, lowered Honda, the only sad little car left. Well then I would say, You Go Girl. You rock that loud exhaust and go to college. Wooo Hoooo.
I should be more humble. But, I'm not. I know I'm doing the wrong thing when I judge people on their car choices. I drove a 1980 shit brown Buick Skylark in high school and I was neither pregnant nor a stripper, well yet anyway. But I was poor. I thought myself to be an intelligent, somewhat angry, young lady with a promising future. But what my car said about me was not what I wished to portray to the world or at least East Mesa. It said I was a poor, angry person with no family. Wait, I was. Fuck. I was the victim of my car. It hated me. I hated it. I wanted to punch it in the headlight and it screwed me over every chance it got. When I got in it I would pray to Sweet Baby Jesus that the mother fucker would start. A wave of relief would sweep over me as I pulled out of my high school parking spot. However, after the initial start up panic came speed bump panic. As the speed bumps approached, little beads of sweat would form around my hair line, mostly because there was no air-conditioning, but sometimes because of the intense heart clenching anxiety I had as a result of the speed bump anticipation. I would softly start to chant, and plead, "please Sweet Baby Jesus, please, please" because that bitch car stalled every time I so much as glided over a speed bump or hump or small stone. I had to restart my car every time I went over any type of raised asphalt.
Because it had no air-conditioner, the hot ass wind would whip through the car from all four windows. As a result, the head liner came unattached and rested neatly on my hair as I drove around town. And as a result of that, I would go everywhere with yellow asbestos laden material stuck to my hair and clothes. It was impossible to look anything but like a poor person in that car.
It was also a special time in my life when the transmission started to go out and the car would not accelerate for a good minute and a half after I stopped at a light. This became stop light panic and I took to running red lights just to avoid stopping at them. Because of my slow start, people behind me thought I was just being an asshole. They took every stoplight opportunity to honk at me for that minute and half until the car decided to go 35 instead of 10. Baby Jesus did not help me through any of this bullshit and God knows I prayed and begged every time I got in that shit hole of a car.
All these cars are running around putting labels on people: rich, poor, snobby, humble, practical, family oriented, stripper, douche-bag. There are certain cars I don't want because I don't want the social statement that goes along with it. Like a mini-van. I am not a mini-van kind of lady. The mini-van might eject me. I don't belong in one. They are more than just cars, they are suburban symbols of practical people who know how to manage their money and time wisely. However, if your mini-van is from 1997 and has a mattress in the back, that is not what it says about you.
I saw someone the other day who wasn't driving a lowered Honda Civic but a gigantic expensive SUV. I'd known this person a few years ago and I wasn't that thrilled with her then. But when I saw this person again I immediately didn't like her still or more.The worst part is that I knew I wouldn't like her when I saw what kind of car she drove before she even got out of the car. This is the wrong thing to do! I know I shouldn't hate her based on her pretentious giant car, but I do. I do. And I do it all the time and with all kinds of cars. I'm always interested to see what kind of car someone has for no other reason than to see if it's gigantic or teal. It really shouldn't matter, but I'm curious. I don't know why I made that snap judgement and I feel mildly bad about having a bad attitude about people based on their cars. It's not nice but I guess I'm not that nice. I try not to judge people like that since I did have a poop colored Buick, but sometimes I'm right. Sometimes people in gigantic cars are bitches. It's just the way things go.
This person from long ago, like years and years ago, not yesterday, not someone I met the other day, no, drove a nice, kind of common but gigantic and expensive suburban soccer mom SUV. I saw her car before I saw her and if you can roll your eyes in your mind, that is what I did. It's probably because I didn't like her anyway but her car sealed the deal.
Despite her car, I tried to give her the benefit of the doubt. I shouldn't judge. I tried to think that she was probably not a materialistic bitch who defines herself based on her possessions because that's not nice to think about people and I'm really trying to be nicer these days. Then she spoke. The most interesting thing about her was her own perceived social status which isn't interesting about people at all. I might have passed all this off as whatever and I don't give a fuck until she tried to discuss education. As a teacher, non-teacher views about education are intriguing to me. Or they piss me off. Sometimes people with little or no education themselves, but with lots of money, have strong views about someone else's profession. I like to think that educated people know when to shut up and listen. But, I'm bias since I'm educated. Stupid people with a trendy attitude of entitlement and big hats keep on going spewing ignorance from their gaping pie faces. Ignorant rich people start talking about shit they don't know anything about but think they can talk about because they have money. Money doesn't make you intelligent and your hat doesn't make you look clever either. It's dumb. She should just shut up because by then I was in full judgmental bitch mode and all I could do was judge. But, If I were sitting with a group of doctors, I wouldn't start talking shop with them about all the things I think about the medical profession just because I've BEEN to a doctor. Because. Well, because, I might end up looking like an uneducated asshole with a really nice car and a dumb hat.
*P.S. This blog is not about you or anyone you know. Years ago. Years years years.I met this person like a whole lifetime ago. You weren't even born.
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By Rita Arens