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Sunday, July 20, 2008

Car shows and the Coolness Factor.

Tonight I needed a little "me time" and took a drive to one of my favorite mountain places. On the way, I stopped off at Sonic for a cherry limeade. YUM! I don't know what the Sonics elsewhere do, but ours always has these car show things. Tonight's was a bit... strange.

I pull into Sonic to find... a row of Mazdas. Not the fancy sports car ones (do they even make sports cars?), but these dinky little putt-putt things. And I'm telling you, these guys had the hoods proudly propped open like they were some sort of souped up engine thingamajig. I know, I'm so technical. I'm a GIRL. And I'm not Danica Patrick, so just stop it already.

The next row of cars, proudly on display by their owners, was a bunch of volkswagon jettas and passats. Um... okay. Then they had rows of beamers, mustangs (new ones only), and Hyundais. Yes. Hyundais. I may know nothing about cars, but I know enough to know they do not pass the coolness factor.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not mocking these guys and their pride in their automobiles. Okay, maybe I am a little, since they were all nerdmobiles with the exception of the mustangs and maybe the BMWs. It's pretty cool that these guys were obviously extremely proud of their cars. I guess it's no longer cool to dig one out of the junkyard, put some hard work and muscle into it, and show it off. Nope. You just drive it off the dealer's lot, and there ya go: instant coolness. Or something like that. And yes, a couple of them still had the dealer tags, so you know that's exactly what happened.

Instant coolness. Huh. I wonder if they have minivan conventions like that? Sure, my paint is um, well, lacking in luster these days, but hey, if they had a contest like, "what's the grossest thing under the seat," I'm sure I'd win, hands-down. The last time I vacuumed out the back, it was so gross I had to sweet talk That Man into doing it for. I still don't know what those kids spilled in there.

I guess it all boils down to the fact that we all think we need something to make us feel cool. Society's so good at putting labels on us that sometimes I wonder if we end up going to an awful lot of trouble making up contests for ourselves so we have a "win" we can boast about. But I have to wonder... are we clinging to something that will mean something in the end?

I've been a little depressed lately because I've been hoping to have a particular label, a certain "coolness" item, and it looks like yet again, I'm going to be denied. A couple of my close friends have been with me on this portion of the journey, and I've been whining to them about it. And they pat me on the head, say it's okay, someday... and I say, yeah I know. But you know I don't.

Then God, in His infinite ability to "get" me, smacked me on the head and said, "So what do you want? To glorify me? Or to get your little "I'm so cool" sticker?" Um, obviously a trick question. Or not. But I'm slow sometimes.

Last night, I spent just over an hour on the phone with one of those friends, and I finally admitted to the truth. The truth is, the work God is doing in me will happen. Maybe not on my timetable. Maybe not in the way I'd like it to. But it WILL happen.

Tonight, when I saw the guys in the geek mobiles, I thought about that need for recognition. How, for a few whiny moments, I lost sight of the fact that I was supposed to be doing this for God. And it makes me wonder, how many other things are in my life that end up being my geek mobile at the car show?


Anonymous said...

Mustangs are cool. Those other cars, not so much.

And as far as I know, our Sonic doesn't do this which is a shame. It sounds fun!

Janet Spaeth said...

We don't have a Sonic, which depresses me terribly, because although we don't have a Sonic, we have their commercials. Talk about unfair--!

I love the award for the grossest thing under the back seat. You know, when I lived on the farm, you'd never guess what crawled under the backseat of my car and gave birth...Oh, I'd better save that for a time when I know you aren't eating, LOL.

I'm with Tori on the Mustangs. THey're my favorite, although living in the north, I drive a Jeep like just about everybody else. But if Mustang came with 4-wheel drive.... WHOO-EE! (And you just know that somewhere, a guy said, "You know, I could build--")

Ah, there's a project for Tim the Toolman Taylor!

Janet Spaeth said...

PS: I forgot to say that you do deserve an "I am cool" sticker. Even if you drive a minivan with goobery stuff under the back seat.