Songs have been written about LA and cars ‘LA is a great big freeway’, about LA and not having cars ‘Nobody walks in LA’, and when you picture southern California and Los Angeles most people polled (I polled three, what the hell) picture a convertible, sand and the beach. Suffice it to say Los Angeles is a car culture, because getting anywhere without one is really difficult; even though Uber makes life so much easier now, I wouldn’t want to have to Uber to my, well, entire life.
The first car I bought when I moved here, and which I drove ‘til its death, was a cute little Honda del Sol. The practical Canadian bought a practical reliable car that was good on gas, low maintenance, and what I thought to be at the time ‘cute.’ News flash…a Honda del Sol isn’t cute to most people in Los Angeles, and when it is ten years old and banged up, can actually get one followed by cops thinking you might be some bad ass from a bad neighborhood until they manage to get close enough to you to see the blonde hair, oversized sunglasses, and Louis Vuitton bag in the front passenger seat and decide you are likely not needing a pull over.
The car culture of Los Angeles began to amaze me, and I started to notice that my little del Sol definitely stood out as ‘unique’ amongst the ‘Mercedes-Ferrari-Maseradi- Lamborghini-Porsche-Range-Rover- culture that I was becoming a part of. I was living in a car obsessed culture and basically I was driving a go-cart. You learn a lot about people by the car they drive, and here are my hard life learned Beverly Hills/LA ‘car-faxs’:
- You can’t judge a guy by his car – Luxury car doesn’t always mean big wallet, in fact it could mean: Luxury car dumpy apartment, or it could mean Luxury car small penis.
- Luxury car does not mean the maniac behind the wheel is a safe driver, it could mean: they have enough money to fix any problem so they don’t care or look where they are going; or that they think they are bigger, better, stronger, faster and so their bionic killer luxury car will win any race. (flash to Bruce Jenner…dude, seriously?……)
- Accept that your insurance rates are going to be higher than anywhere else in the state. The probability of getting into an accident with a high end luxury mobile is like 99% greater, so you either; pay higher rates and stay in Beverly Hills, borrow a friend’s address from Riverside County as your primary address, get a second home in the desert, or …move.
- If someone lets it slip that they, or their boyfriend (who looks dodgy because his nose is seriously messed up) drives a bullet proof car you only need to ask yourself ONE question…WHO needs a bullet proof car in Beverly Hills? RUN….or accept that there is a high probability of getting shot at.
- If you can’t afford a luxury car, get a Prius….It is affordable and considered cool because it is environmentally friendly. In fact a Prius or any hybrid becomes an acceptable excuse for why you don’t own a high end Luxury car. Of course the Prius owner will never wear a Tesla T-shirt….NEVER.
- New car trends, Los Angelites love them; we started the ‘burnt car trend’. The first time I saw a Mercedes with a finish that looked like it had been torched, I was surprised it was drivable. Imagine finding out that someone paid extra to have it look this way? Worse, imagine a year or so later actually liking the burnt look, whose ‘look’ is actually called Matte. Sigh!
Well at the end of the day, my little Honda del Sol which never got me any guy attention (okay it did, but not the type of guy I wanted), ran great for ten years, cost me nothing to drive, was reliable, easy to park, and in my mind ‘sporty’, was an overall great investment. Moral of the story is…I now drive a BMW.
Sometimes I miss this little go-cart…..and the baby…Canoli, will be missed forever….