Vanity...thy name is dickhead.
I thought about vanity plates on my way home from work yesterday, where I happened to be behind a car with one.
I figure that there are three types of people in the world who have vanity plates on their cars:
1) People who have something to share about themselves
2) People who have something to say about their cars
The person I was behind happened to be from Category #1.
...shall we begin...?
Category #1: People who have something to share about themselves
I don’t mind vanity plates – in fact, in my younger days I used to have a sweet 1970 Oldsmobile scream machine with one.
The plate said, simply, “Rowdy”. This, I suppose, also puts me in Category #1.
Now, “Rowdy” wasn’t necessarily my mantra back in the day. It was more in line with the fact that – at the time – there was a wrestler named “Rowdy Roddy Piper”. My name happens to be “Rod”, so this was a suggestion of one of my friends. When you coupled the plate to the screaming fast classic car, it all just fit together nicely. Hooking that same plate to my Honda CRV these days simply wouldn’t fly.
..so I get an exemption from being made fun of.
However, the car I was behind said this:
He’s an engineer (I was able to figure this out even with the lack of the letter "I" in the word - maybe I should get a plate that says "SMRT").
How utterly fantastic for you, Mr. Engineer.
..you're apparently "living the dream" and want to shout to the world..."I'm an Engineer!!"
All together now:
"WHO GIVES A SH*T?"
Category #2: People who have something to say about their cars
I hate these people…and I don’t understand them.
I was behind one the other day - a Corvette. The plate said:
So…it’s YOUR Corvette. No kidding. I thought it was MY Corvette. Thanks for clarifying that – because I was confused about not only the make of the car, but who owned it.
I damn near got into your shiny red Corvette instead of my piece of dogsh*t CRV...thank GOD I saw the license plate just in time.
I’m so much better off now than I was before I left the house. I’ve heard about people compensating with their Corvette…maybe the plate should have said:
Well…at least the Vette guy went so far as to write “MY” in front of the car name. It seems that the more money you make, the better the car, and the dumber your vanity plate.
Like, for instance, sitting behind a Mercedes E320, and the license plate says:
Gotcha. Thank you for telling me the make of the car you purchased by displaying it on your license plate.
The silver badge on the back that says “E320” didn’t exactly do it for me. Seeing it twice, well…that really cements down the actual make of the car for me. Thank you so much.
Speaking of jackasses…
Category #3: Jackasses
The only good thing about vanity license plates is that – when in traffic – other people now have something to do to keep occupied (aside from actually paying attention to the road to avoid crashing). You get to decipher the plate in front of you while sitting in crappy, hideous traffic. Plus, as an extra bonus, you might smile a bit if the people did it correctly.
This takes a hideous, horrible turn, though – when you CAN’T decipher this plate for the life of you. These people should be lumped into the same group as the morons who spell out their car names on their plates.
We’ve all done this – gotten behind the guy with the license plate:
So you spend the next half hour contorting and twisting the thing to try to make sense of it. You ask your copilot for assistance. Are you supposed to read it backwards, like an ambulance? Well, crap - it doesn’t make sense reading it backwards…it comes out “Yellamru” or “Yell am are you”. Dammit. Let’s try saying the whole thing really fast: “urmal3why”…nope. Is the “3” supposed to be an “E”? You say it again: “urmaley”. Nope – not that, either. Is “UR” supposed to be “You Are”…or did they just miss a couple of letters…so it’s supposed to be “You RiM All Three…Why?”
WTF?!?! HELP ME OUT HERE!! It’s not fun for us if we can’t figure it out! And if it’s an inside joke (like, it’s some scientist who tells you it’s the formula for Scope mouthwash), then WHY put it on a license plate when only 3 people in the whole world will figure it out?! If that’s the case, I’m going to get out of my car, pull you by the hair out of your window, and beat you over the head with your own plate until you tell my why I’ve just wasted a half-hour on a private joke, and now I have a headache.
Why do these people need to share?
Why do I care what you do for a living, or how many kids you have, or that you “LUV2SEW”? I’m glad you love to sew…but you don’t have to make me read about it.
Should I pull them over and congratulate them on making it to “engineer” status in their career…..or stop them and ask them for tips on how to knit?!?
Ugh. It makes me want to pull the joke I pulled on my buddy a long time ago, where I made a license plate out of cardboard and taped it over his back plate (he was parked facing the building we worked in so he didn’t see it until days later). The plate said:
…was pretty funny. (This was way back in the day before being gay was accepted as mainstream, so please – no hate mail). Anyway, he got me back by filling my car up to the window sills with those Styrofoam packing peanuts. Touche, my friend...touche.
At the very least, I’d much rather be behind someone with an imagination or creativity when deciding on their vanity plates. I had a friend in high-school who had two really good plates:
(translated loosely to “I ate you before” and “F*** you”). Nicely done. I give it an 8 out of 10 on the creativity, and 10 out of 10 on intentional humor.
So let’s all pitch in and get one vanity plate for the “MYVETTE” people, and the “E320” people and the “Undecipherable” people, that simply says:
That would be BYUTFUL.