Bitch on Wheels = Chubbo in a Corolla
When I was a p-plate driver in 1985, I had to make do with my parents' terminally uncool 1973 volvo that only had an AM radio as its main source of entertainment.
Despite this, I never once considered that it was worth adorning the car with any additional gear to give it a more groovy vibe: it was merely my single and my most valued source of transport before I went to university. After uni, I ended up with a poo brown 1971 Renault as my official first car and decided that it was already so comically ugly it was pretty. There were no bumper stickers witty enough to be worth the sixty cents it cost from a petrol station, nor did the flying turd-of-a-car need them.
Three years later, back from two years in London and reluctantly studying high school teaching, I ended up with my own volvo; a 1972 safari orange job with brown interior. It was referred to by my friends as the Jaffa, and by my then-boyfriend Love Chunks as a Sucked Crunchie (a Cadbury crunchie bar with the chocolate sucked off it). Again, no stickers, rearview dangly bits or seat covers were needed. It was butt ugly and I loved it.
Since then, Love Chunks and I moved from a Suzuki vitara (yay, a car made in the same decade we were actually living in!) to a mitsubishi station wagon, bought when I was in the first stages of labour. Both cars were left unadorned with the exception of a kitsch Winnie the Poo window shade for Sapphire when she was a baby.
Our preference for clutter-free cars appears to be a rare one, especially for any female drivers aged between 16 and 39. In the past few years it seems as though any single girl in a compact car feels compelled to slap on a sticker that describes her as a 'Bad Ass,' or proclaims that she's able to go 'From Zero to Bitch in Ten Seconds', or - my own personal favourite - confesses that 'I'm naked from the waist down.'
When you drive in the lane next to such self-publicising 'Hot Babe in a Barina' types, it invariably ends in disappointment. Said babe is usually a chubby 38 year old with three chins and the dress sense of Ma Clampett. This Barina Babe is also the type that works in the accounts section of a large government department and has several plastic trolls blue-tacked to the top of her computer monitor. In an effort to show that she's funnier than her dress sense, she normally has something like 'You Don't Have To Be Crazy To Work Here But It Helps' next the framed photo of her three cats.
It is not just the single women who like to use their vehicles to announce what they would like to be rather than what they are. Adelaide is sadly the stomping ground to a tragic number of Holden Commodores (I know, I could end it right there and it'd be tragedy enough) driven by females. I estimate that at least fifty percent of this species hail from the 'western or northern suburbs' and therefore consider having a full slab of beer in the fridge, a carton of Winfields and the same father for at least two of her five children is a huge success.
Perhaps that's being a tad harsh. Ah, who cares. Their choice of bumper stickers are not particularly subtle. One peroxided woman who was busy sucking on a smoke with her three kids in the back seat had 'Grow Your Own Dope. Plant A Man' emblazoned in shimmering silver, pretty well obscuring any view she might have had from her back window. Clearly now a bitter single mum but also on the lookout.
Another commodore gal with a wizened elbow of a face emphasised by the black kohl around her eyes, passed me the other day, with the winsome 'Who Needs Brains With Tits Like These.' I'm sure that her mother is very proud, but if the premature wrinkles on her face were anything to go by, her 'tits' could no doubt be slung over her shoulders to get them out of the way.
A chubbier version of the same woman parked next to me at Tea Tree Plaza during the pre-Christmas frenzy with 'No Fat Blokes. The Bumper Will Scrape' on the back. I'm assuming that the faded colours and curled up edges of the sticker indicate that she slapped it on her car about three stone ago.
At our school fair held in early December, I saw a family walking across the cricket oval, all matching in their Dr Dre/Eminem/Wu Tang Clan black t-shirts. Dad and Mum had the same kind of BonJovi hair circa 1986, with Dad adding a handlebar mo' for added effect. It was Mum however, who made me smile. The white lettering against the black of her t-shirt read 'Men are Idiots and I Married the King.' How could he not be offended by that, I know that Love Chunks would be. On second thoughts, maybe the man she was with wasn't her husband.