The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

4 February 2008

Climb every mountain

General Motors knew exactly what they were doing when they began producing the Hummer: they were creating a niche vehicle, instantly recognizable — something you can't say of too many of the General's generics — with off-road and rock-hopping capabilities as good as any you could get anywhere. So I have no trouble defending the Hummer.

Some of its owners, maybe not so much:

So I'm in the parking lot at Lowes and nitwit in the hummer is taking up far too much road space. Along comes little car with family inside, taking up the appropriate space in the road and refusing to budge. Nitwit in hummer was forced to hop the curb and of course shouted a few explicits out of the window. I followed, plenty of room since I was too driving a normal sized car.

If he'd left it at that — but no:

"Did you see that, did you see that, I had to go up on the curb to avoid that idiot, did you see where he parked?"

I quickly looked around, hoping beyond all hope nitwit wasn't addressing me, I only wanted to run in and get some molding.

No such luck.

"Some people, I'm going to have to take my car to the garage tomorrow, the wheels are probably all out of alignment."

I snorted, I couldn't stop myself, it was an involuntary sound it just came out. It's the kind of snort one makes when they’re trying desperately not to laugh at the pure lunacy of nitwit.

"Excuse me?" said nitwit indignantly

I was forced to respond.

"Look", says me "that is not a car, you're driving a hummer. It was built to crush small villages in war-torn areas. Haven't you seen the commercials, apparently it can scale a 65% incline. I seriously doubt you knocked your wheels out of alignment and if you did, ask for a refund. If you're not aware of your vehicle's capabilities perhaps you should consider a small car and do us all a favor by allowing us to drive around parking lots without fear of you infringing on our side of the road — have a nice day."

And for the coup de grâce:

And as I turned to leave — "You probably swerve around tiny little pot holes as well don't you?"

The curtain of charity descends.

Posted at 2:06 PM to Driver's Seat , Wastes of Oxygen

In my younger days, the Hummer owner's potential alignment problem would have paled in comparison to the four flat tires he would have had. I wouldn't do that now in my old age, except as a training exercise for the young-uns. ;)

It really is a shame we don't require special licenses for Hummers and other roided-up minivans like it.

Posted by: Dan B at 2:42 PM on 4 February 2008

"Congratulations on your purchase of a Hummer. Do you want the asshole option with your vehicle?"

Posted by: Greg Hlatky at 3:36 PM on 4 February 2008

I find those things absolutely sickening. Who the hell needs that kind of power in the SUBURBS? (Or anywhere in modern America?) It's absolutely ridiculous that anyone would buy one. I'd have done pretty much the same thing.

Posted by: Nate at 4:28 PM on 4 February 2008

I assume the "where did he park?" question from Hummer-dude would have been followed up by " I can key his car"?

Seriously - attitudes like Hummer-dude's will be what I cite to my friends, 10 or 12 years from now, when I finalize my decision to become a hermit.

Posted by: fillyjonk at 4:59 PM on 4 February 2008

I've seen the same inability to drive (taking their half of the road out of the middle) from those driving very small cars, as well. Some people simply cannot tell where the corners of their vehicles are.

Posted by: unimpressed at 6:27 PM on 4 February 2008

Oh, I just love watching people in giant SUVs with all that outdoor gear bolted on, driving around the speed-bumps at the Kroger parking lot.

Or coming to a complete stop and scaling the asphalt mountain as if there were a TV crew looking on, making a commercial out of the adventure.

As for unimpressed's observation, I second it. I drive a Bronco, and I stay on my own side of that damned double-yellow because I can and that's how I was raised. But I still end up getting crowded by people in tiny little roller-skate cars who for some reason can't find room for their eight-foot-wide vehicle in twelve feet of lane-width.

Posted by: McGehee at 7:43 PM on 4 February 2008

...or whatever the actual figures are. All I know for sure is, my truck fits.

Posted by: McGehee at 7:44 PM on 4 February 2008

I just don't see the attraction at all. They even have limo hummers and people actually hire them for proms and weddings.

How un-elegant, being driven to you wedding in an off road vehicle

Posted by: Lynne at 10:12 AM on 7 February 2008

Here in europe we laugh at them.
They don't fit our roads, gates, private driveways or parking spaces.
Off road, a much smaller vehicles eat them for breakfast.
Big, heavy, stupid.
By the way... Mc Gehee, even in the U.S. i expect 8 ft wide is a bit unreal... My Land Rover is 5'3" wide.

Posted by: soubriquet at 5:26 PM on 8 February 2008