Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Shoes, cars, despair in general
Did you ever have one of those days when you just didn’t feel like doing anything? Anything at all? Even including typing “did you ever have one of those days when you just didn’t feel like doing anything?” I just had three of ‘em in a row. Of course, I still did some stuff. But I really didn’t feel like it.
And I can’t blog about the Cheney Administration’s last series of affronts to all that is good and decent, like that loophole in the bailout that requires us to keep tithing directly to our CEO overlords, or their new and hard-to-undo regulations allowing their friends to step up their efforts to poison the planet. It’s just too depressing. You know, it’s almost as if they’re trying to make a profit off of environmental and financial disasters! Somebody ought to write a book about that. Me, I’m not up to it. I simply say I throw my shoes in your general direction, you dogs. Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries.
Nor can I blog about Senate Republicans’ desires to plunge the country into a depression in order to break the back of the UAW. Somebody else will have to do that. Instead, I am going to blog about something I can manage: the Dodge Avenger.
I mean, when I think of the Detroit bailout in terms of supporting the UAW, I’m not the least bit ambivalent. But when I think of the industry . . . well, can I ask what the hell is up with cars like the Avenger? Jamie and I rented one when we were in Vegas, breaking our streak of six consecutive PT Cruisers, and the driving experience was kind of baffling. Let’s start with the name: Avenger? I’ve always thought the weirdest name for a car was the Toyota Cressida. You know, they already have a Celica—couldn’t they have gone with the “Toyota Troilus” instead? What kind of literary allusion is that, anyway? Toyota Cressida—a car you shouldn’t necessarily trust? Yes, I know what DeLillo says—these are “supranational names, computer-generated, more or less universally pronounceable. Part of every child’s brain noise, the substatic regions too deep to probe.” But still. What or who precisely is being avenged by the Avenger? Jamie and I drove around Vegas and the Hoover Dam muttering, “by Grabthar’s hammer, by the sons of Worvan, you shall be Dodge Avenged,” and we managed to amuse ourselves. But at some point between July and now (look, it was really really low on my to-do list, OK? I had to wait until I didn’t feel like doing anything for a couple of days), I checked out a review of the Avenger, and yes, it appears to suck every bit as much as I thought. Who designs these hideous things? Who names them?
And what is to be done?