So I was on a couple date the other night when the other fella at the table (we’ll call him Manute) declared, “Well, I’ve got some ideas for the Grown Man.” The table snickered and then was exceedingly impressed when he produced a 3×5 card with neatly written, bullet pointed, ideas. Clearly, this man meant business.
One of his ideas was something like, “Grown Men must have trucks. I love my truck, and when I see a guy in a little Honda, I laugh.” At this point in the conversation, I slipped away into my own thoughts and began writing this post. Because trucks, and cars in general, are something that men go ape-crap about. Really, I don’t need to elaborate on this point, do I? Guys love automobiles, it’s as American as TMZ and Double Downs. But why? Why the obsession?
Manute had a solid point. Trucks are awesome. I’ve had a truck, someday I’d like another one. There’s something about knowing that you can do basically anything in a good truck that makes them so appealing. While most men drive the same six mile stretch everyday with their suitcase in the passenger seat and absolutely no adventure worthy of such a grand vehicle, just knowing that, if the need arose, you could haul two palates of sod or could quickly enlist a stranger to drive while you stand in the bed of the truck and shot at bad guys! Trucks rule.
But Gentlemen, we’ve turned the love of our vehicles up to 11 and need to dial it down a notch. Being cool in a truck isn’t about having the truck, it’s about confidence. My friend Manute doesn’t really laugh at poor Honda Civic drivers when he sees them – he’s too good of a man. And, in fairness to him, he was sitting next to his girlfriend of 10 months and across the table from the two of us who basically knew him through the girlfriend. The freaking guy had a lot of charming to do.
However, plenty of guys do see their vehicle as some badge of superiority in the caste system of masculinity. These are the same guys that put stickers on the back that read “It’s a Jeep thing, you wouldn’t understand” or display a picture of Calvin pissing on [insert rival truck company’s logo]. These guys are, wait for it…wait for it….NOW! Compensating. They’re saying, “Don’t see me, see the truck.” To these men I say, nothing on this planet will make you look cooler and stand out above the other men like a solid sense of self and a truck load of humility. What’s important is that you like the truck. It’s not about being held in higher regard than others, it’s about being your own Grown Man. Confidence, confidence, confidence – it’s really the game changer.
Allow me to end with a story: When I was 15, my grandfather gave me his car as he was upgrading to a standard issue, old dude Saturn. For six months before I got my license, I went outside every day and cleaned the car, put a new and ridiculously loud stereo in the car, and generally just played with my new toy. I loved that car and felt like the coolest guy that ever lived. On the day that I turned 16 and finally got to drive it, I went everywhere! My mom would mention two rooms away that we were running low on eggs… “No problem mom, I’ll be right back!” My brother would need to go to t-ball practice… “Oh geez mom and dad, you’ve had a hard day, let me take him!” For real, I was the MAN in that car.
That car was* a 1.0 L, 3 cylinder, Geo Metro. Not familiar with the Metro? It’s a lawnmower with four doors that I literally had to fall into because I’m so tall. And, even though that was one of the smallest, crappiest cars ever made, it was absolutely the coolest vehicle I’ll ever own – even when I finally get the 1957 Chevrolet 5100 (or one of the thousand other amazing trucks I drool over). The man makes the Geo, not the other way around.
You’re a Grown Man, the size of your truck doesn’t matter.
*I totaled that car 13 days after I got my license. 16-year-olds shouldn’t be allowed to drive.