Hey There, What's Your Name?
What's in a name? According to James Fussell of The Kansas City Star,
there is definitely something. The last time you wanted to clean your
carpet, it’s a good bet you didn’t say, “Honey, I need to vacuum. Would
you pull Sucky out of the closet for me?”
We don’t name our vacuum cleaners. But cars are different.
While some of us view them as simply a means from here to there, others imbue them with feelings, moods and personalities. That’s why they talk about them. That’s why they talk to them. That’s why they give them names.
We thought it might be fun to share a few of those names with you. But first a little background. A survey by Yahoo Autos found that more than half of us — 51 percent — give our cars a pet name, with the large majority of those names being female.
Fussel continues that TV and movies have given us several famously named cars, including Herbie, Kitt, the General Lee and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. There’s a Web site for drivers who name their cars, too. At carbirths.com you can register your car’s name and store other pertinent details, such as pictures and a birth date. Or you can just look at the names and pictures of other people’s cars.
But surely half of all drivers don’t name their cars, do they? Curious, we asked 50 people if they’ve ever named a car.
Thirty-one of them — a healthy 62 percent — either had names for their present cars or ones in the past. Take Sareah Brown, a 22-year-old assistant dairy manager at a Kansas City grocery store. Brown named his ’98 Buick Park Avenue “Lucille.”
Why? “I don’t know,” he said. “Just seemed to fit.”
Lucille’s a good car, he said. Strong and reliable. He
hasn’t always been so lucky. Before Lucille there was Bertha, a ’97
Pontiac Grand Am.
“Bertha was a mean one,” he said. “She’d stop at the light and I’d have to wave at people to pass. She’d play with my feelings. I’d just get to going and then she’d just stop. I’d be like, ‘Dang, baby!’ ”