It is said that you are known by your actions, by your friends, and by your enemies. All these are true, but the single thing that immediately gives away your real attitude toward life is your choice of vehicle!
I suggest that you can look at a vehicle and immediately know more than you want to about the driver. From rusted hulks covered with grafitti and held together by duct tape to the Excaliburs driven by white-haired guys in Palm beach, each automobile says as much about one’s attitude toward life as about one’s income.
My first car was a used Chevrolet convertible, bought when I got out of the service in 1957. As a young married man, I could barely make ends meet, but life felt good when I could commute to work with the top down and I did that even in New England’s cold weather.
Eight years later, single again, I bought a VW Bug and drove it so hard that I blew up the engine. It was a fun car and served me well through all sorts of adventures.
I was finally earning decent money and bought a car that gave me all of the speed and dependability that I needed. That forest green Sunbeam Tiger served me well for many years until I managed to get broadsided in Ft Lauderdale while distracted by a major business setback.
Since then, there has been a succession of cars: an old Chevrolet Caprice, a supercharged Shelby, an old Ford Victoria, a Jaguar sedan and a Ford Windstar van. The car of the year reflected my level of optimism more than my economic status, which has varied all over the place. My preference for high-tech startups has made life exciting over the past fifty years.
Now that I am married to Gretchen and we live in the country, my vehicle choices have changed again. Once I would have given everything I had for a car with the aspect ratio of a luge and a supercharged engine. Now I need vast amounts of cargo space and off-road traction.
We couldn’t find a vehicle that gave me both so we now have two vehicles which should cover our needs for the forseeable future. One is a 16 passenger Dodge Van with an open cargo bay and the other is a Subaru Forester with all-wheel drive.
Both are working vehicles and they reflect the life we live and the things we hold important. We chose form and function over appearance, but our vehicles have a beauty of their own to us. They get us where we need to go in comfort, if not in style. You might say that these cars of our golden years were chosen for efficiency.
Our cars definitely give us away.