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Echoes and Mirrors» Blog Archive » screw gas prices, we can’t lose the dick-measuring contest!

screw gas prices, we can’t lose the dick-measuring contest!

Or something like that.

GM desperately needs an obnoxious, attention-grabbing brand to keep from turning into a dreary shadow of its former self. And America needs the Hummer to remind us of what has always made our automobiles stand out, from the tailfin 1950s to the muscle car 1960s and ’70s: swagger. Americans don’t just drive their cars — they proclaim something about themselves by driving them.

It takes a certain kind of man — it’s almost always the owner of a Y chromosome — to take a gander at the Hummer, in all its broad, burly, paramilitary gas-guzzling glory, and see himself behind the wheel, striking fear and loathing in the hearts of ecologically sensitive motorists. Oprah does not drive a Hummer. But Arnold Schwarzenegger has been a proud owner. As has Sylvester Stallone. The Hummer appeals to large men of even larger ego, men who aren’t worried about their carbon footprint and believe that obstacles in life are meant not just to be surmounted but squashed flat. They like owning the beast because, when it bears down on lesser rides on the freeway, those lesser rides — even the Teutonic triple threat of Porsche/BMW/Mercedes — get out of the way. Every once in while, you see a little guy clambering out of a Hummer, painfully in need of a ladder, and you realize that it can also be viewed as a $57,000 ticket to enlarged self-esteem.

I personally don’t get out of the way for Hummers; it is either stupidity or the knowledge that if they do hit me, they can afford to pay for it (otherwise they wouldn’t be driving such a vehicle, obviously!).

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