On cars' names and personalities

I don't know if other people's cars have names, but ours do.

It started with mine. I had just moved to Wanaka, had just started a semi-permanent job - a heck of an upgrade from my previous "backpacker" status - and had bought my first real car: something decent, something that ran well, something I could really call "mine", a 1995 Subaru Legacy... and within days, if not within a day, she got christened, Bruce.

I didn't do it - The Man did, and (un)fortunately the name stuck. He said she was definitely female, but she wasn't pretty, hence - she was Bruce.

* rolling of the eyes

Then came Chickie. For obvious reasons.

She was the car The Man bought so he could get himself over the hill to Queenstown - he started work there, whilst still living in Wanaka with me - and she cost him a whole of $750, I think, which is honest enough considering she's older than me and only a little younger than The Man.

A beast of a car, basically ;)

And now, a few weeks back, we welcomed another member into our family. (It's funny, actually, because she arrived within days of welcoming The Girlie, who is definitely the more precious addition of the two.)

Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you - Squirt!

She's a bit of an... unplanned addition to our family.

You see, Bruce broke down on the way back from the hospital after The Girlie was born and after facing yet another repair bill in triple digits - she'd already had two in the last year alone - we finally decided to... let Bruce go. Sure, she'd been a trusty workhorse, and I loved her, but those repairs that had started to happen one on top of another, one on top of another, it just wasn't making financial sense any more to keep on servicing her like that, when for the same amount of money we could've been paying off something way bigger, in the long run anyway.

Which is why we decided, somewhat heavy-heartedly, to take a decent chunk out of our house deposit savings and put that money towards a car instead. (Ugh...) I mean, we know we are staying in New Zealand now, we've got permanent residence permits, and with two children and long-term plans it has just really started making sense to get something with decent airbags, decent petrol consumption and decent reliability, which Bruce wasn't any more.

But, sorry, I got carried away - I wasn't meaning to get into Bruce's demise here, I was meaning to explain where the name, Squirt, came from instead.

We were walking away from her a few days ago when The Man asked me what I thought her name was. I mused that she was definitely female, something little and polite (rather than Bruce who was heavy and brusque, and Chickie who is little but feisty), and suggested Suzy. Susan. Something with S, anyway, and The Man went on to suggest that she was maybe a lesbian, at which point I suddenly went, Squirt!

We can't name her Squirt!, The Man argued loudly. Can you even say that name without laughing?

I don't know, maybe, I wondered. Why not?

And though I wasn't precisely adamant on keeping her as Squirt to begin with, I cannot help but think, Squirt!, every time I look at her now, or even think about her, because she's just so... Squirt to me.

And, yeah, it's stuck now. Squirt.

PS. Besides, it'll serve The Man right after I drove around in a Bruce for five years.

PPS. Squirt.

1 comment:

  1. Probably just as well my Corolla hasn't seen this, she'd be getting anxious. She's older than your Bruce and we've never named her. She's 1992 and while not as expensive as Bruce to maintain I'm aware that despite what my mechanic tells me about her likelihood of lasting forever, she will need to be upgraded at some point simply to reduce the fuel bill! Aside from that air bags would be nice, and a headrest that's not leaking something fluffy, oh, and air conditioning that works or is repairable for less than the car is worth would be nice.