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Wednesday, April 14, 2004

White Bread Aesthetics

One of the Mexican kitchen workers in a restaurant next to my apartment drives this funked-out Ford Mustang. He has added some crazy details to his ride, personalizing his vehicle. In the movie Office Space workers at a cheesy theme restaurant were told to wear buttons on their uniform suspenders. These buttons were called ‘flair’ in the movie and employees were encouraged to wear as much ‘flair’ as possible. This Mexican dude’s additions to his Mustang could be considered ‘flair.’ Most white people don’t have any ‘flair’ on their vehicles.

Most well-to-do white people would see this Mexican guy’s after-market alterations to his car as tacky. On the other hand the Mexican guy certainly thinks that his car is much cooler now than when he bought it. My car has no flair but I certainly admire what the Mexican guy has done with his wheels. I’m sure that the Mexican guy looks at rich white people’s cars and thinks that they are terrifically boring. Whose aesthetic sensibilities would you lean towards?

This Mexi-mobile has a decal that says “Jesus” (I think that in this instance it is pronounced “Hey Soos.” My guess is that “Hey Soos” is a Mexican NASCAR driver.). The car also has gold embroidery on the dash. Lots of white people think this sort of ornamentation to be in bad taste yet they leave their cars “as is” from the factory, with no attempt to customize their wheels in any way. Let’s think about this for a minute.

Lots of rich white people drive German or Japanese luxury cars. I think it is safe to say that most Americans feel that Germans and Japanese are fussy and uptight. Cars are designed by engineers who most people think are fussy and uptight. German and Japanese cars are designed by German and Japanese engineers. Are you getting my point yet? What I’m saying is that the stick up white people’s butts has a stick up its butt. I think that it is time for us to try and at least pull the stick that is up the stick’s butt in our butt, out. I realize that the last sentence is a bit clumsy but seeing that it is probably the dumbest thought that has ever passed through my head I decided to leave it “as is.”

We take our automobiles much too seriously. Just what we spend on car advertising is enough to build a nation-wide network of mass transportation. If more people started driving these “Jesus-mobiles” or Philippino taxis it might take some of the wind out of the sails of the “conspicuous consumption-mobiles.” If every other car stopped at a light had flames along the sides wouldn’t you feel like a douche bag in your 7 series BMW?

Under the present regime of white people-dominated aesthetics the only thing your car really says about you is how much you paid for it. It doesn’t say whether or not you are a fan of “Hey Soos” or even if you care anything for gold embroidery. You wouldn’t hire a German engineer to decorate your apartment, would you? I hope not. Let’s all go out there and add some flair to our cars.

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