Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Gay Yellen: Name That Car!

Does your car have a name? One that captures its true personality? I've named some of mine. After all, boats get names. Why not cars?

By my mid-twenties, I'd already owned two really fun cars: an azure blue Impala convertible and a Corvette Stingray. They were so cool, they didn't need any other identity.

But for reasons best left unexplained, I sold the Stingray and bought a Ford Pinto. I drove it just like I'd driven the 'Vette, fast and furious, up and down the freeways and the canyons of Los Angeles. That little car didn't know it wasn't sporty. I gave it an identity upgrade and named it Penelope, after the wife of Odysseus, because she had spunk.

Fast forward to the 21st century, when my decades-old Mercedes was on its last wheel. Facing a total overhaul, I opted for a new car. At the time, most new designs looked all the same to me. I wanted something I could easily spot in a crowded parking lot, one that wouldn't have me trying to unlock a stranger's car that I'd mistaken for mine. I'd owned some really nice cars by then, and my husband still had his. I only needed a scoot-around-town car. Nothing fancy.

On a fluke, I discovered the Nissan Cube and bought it the same day. I named it Roobix, a play on the name of the guy who invented that other famous cube. Matter of fact, I placed one of his on top the of the little circle of factory-installed shag rug on its dashboard. Roobix is neither sexy nor aerodynamic, but it looks like no other car, and turns out to be one of the most fun cars I've ever driven.

The car is so distinctive that it made a CBS News Top 15 list. Okay, so the list was for the World's Ugliest Cars. But hear me out. It's small on the outside and big on the inside, which is a neat trick if you ask me. It gets a lot of thumbs up as I drive through the city. It has a gizmo that delivers an array of psychedelic lights inside. And the swirly ceiling has a hot tub vibe, minus the heat and the water.

I'm not the only one who's ever been inspired to name my ride. Beyonce called her Jag Honeybee. Obama dubbed his car The Beast. Lady Gaga rolled in her Bloody Mary Rolls Royce. In my Samantha Newman Mystery Series, Sam gives her lowly little subcompact the name Ferret for its ability to squeeze into and out of tight spaces.

And, by the way, my Cube isn't the only car of mine to make that CBS ugliest list. Coming in at #1—Ta DAH!!— the Ford Pinto. Two award-winners! Life is good.

Have you ever given your car a name? We'd love you to share it in the comments below.

Gay Yellen 
writes the award-winning
Samantha Newman Mysteriesincluding:
The Body Business and
The Body Next Dooravailable on Amazon.
Coming soon in 2022: Body in the News
 


12 comments:

  1. I love this blog! No, I've never named my cars, but early on, I bought them based on their looks and my younger-days identity. a baby blue skylark and a sport 200 Datsun SX (yeah, I'm that old). Fast forward to married life, my husband drove company cars and we knew if they were a lemon and ended up buy them, Ford Mercury or Taurus, so I drove the (insert Eyore) here hand-me downs. Finally, he said enough was enough as my kids were heading toward college. I drove a Camry, a Dodge pickup (hated at first but lots of fun, and finally my silver Acura TLX, which I drive to this day and love.

    I'm dying to hear about the Nissan Cube. My daughter and her wife just had twins and that makes a family of five. Lots of room you say??? All wheel or 4-wheel drive. Must check it out. And... I have to think of a name for my Acura. Fun post, Gay.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you enjoyed it, Donnell. Alas, the Cube was discontinued a few years ago, which I consider a marketing blunder akin to the demise of the original Beetle. People who drive them love them. I'd love to know what name your Acura gets!

      Delete
    2. That's a tough one, Gay. So far in honor of Helen Reddy I'm going with Angel Baby :)

      Delete
    3. Just saying the words Angel Baby makes me smile.

      Delete
  2. Not one to name my cars because I like to change them like I change my underwear. Still, ..........

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've always thought you to be an exceptional person, Debra. Never met anyone who changed cars daily!

      Delete
    2. If you name it, you have to keep it....:)

      Delete
    3. Okay, Angel Baby Acura it is, Gay and Saralyn ;)

      Delete
  3. Fun blog, Gay, just like your mysteries! I've been known to name cars after foods with similar colors--such as the banana, the cream soda, the PB, and the mint car.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Makes perfect sense to me, Saralyn. I knew someone once who drove his Green Machine.

      Delete

This is a comment awaiting moderation on the blog.