By on February 23, 2016

"Separates the men from the boys," Oldsmobile Toronado ad

Across the vast and majestic gulf of time and space, the jimmies rustled not-so-softly when I published last week’s column on the reasons people choose crossovers. I was accused of persecuting everybody from innocent children to Fox Wolfie Galen. The author of the guest editorial to which my column was a reply claimed that he would leave TTAC forever unless I renounced my views on traditional masculinity, essentially attempting to no-platform me right off a site that I personally dragged from the abyss just two and a half years ago (with all of your help, of course). But seriously — I edited multiple news items for this site from a hospital bed a couple of hours after they cut out my spleen and this guy thinks I’m going to quit just to spare his delicate feelings.

Not that there wasn’t some intelligent, reasonable, principled opposition among the B&B to what I had to say, of course. Some of it resonated with me long after I put my laptop down for the day and picked up my bottle of Ketel One for the evening. I started to think about why people settle: for jobs, for spouses, for vacations — but most of all, why they settle for certain cars. Why have so many of us made the pansy-assed decision to buy something like a crossover? And why do so many of us feel the need to defend that decision to the Internet death?

A few hours later, as I unsteadily unbuttoned the blouse of a woman who was a toddler back when I started driving my father’s 733i, I asked myself: What if I took that easy contempt that I feel for crossover-driving single men and pointed that high-powered perception on myself, so to speak? When did I settle, and why did I do it?

"Separates the men from the boys," Oldsmobile Toronado ad

The story really starts with my aforementioned father. Dad left college and volunteered for Vietnam out of some combination of boredom and malice, hung over there for a while, got some medals, caught a plane out of Saigon, and jumped back behind the wheel of his droptop Camaro RS 327. Not exactly a Ferrari Daytona, but the old man wasn’t really a car guy. A couple years later, he got married and had a son, who was me.

I’d like to tell you that Dad and I rolled around in that Camaro the way my son and I roll around in my 911, but the truth is that Mom pitched a fit about his “unsafe convertible” and made him trade it in for a brand-new orange Volvo sedan, which was extremely safe because it never ran long or well enough to acquire highway velocity.

Why’d he do it? Why’d he agree to get rid of his car? Why did we need to get a big, expensive Volvo just to cart me around? I was the size of a roast turkey. Dad wasn’t afraid of the Viet Cong or the NVA so I doubt he was afraid of my Mom. Rather, I suspect he thought he was doing the right thing by trading in his bitchin’ Camaro on a proper family mobile. Never mind that we lived in New York and barely drove anywhere. Never mind that he could have bought anything from a hardtop Camaro to a BMW 2002 to satisfy my crazy mom. He got the Volvo. It was part of settling down. And settling down always involves a bit of settling for, dontcha know.

Fast-forward thirty-some years. I’m married with no children, I have three Porsches and two Volkswagen Phaetons. But what I really want is:

  • A Suzuki Hayabusa;
  • A Ferrari 430, preferably in some sort of Scuderia trim.

I could have afforded both of those items, in the traditional white-trash sense of being able to make the monthly payments. I went to look at both of them. I thought about colors and specifications and equipment. Yet the years went on and I continued to not have a Hayabusa or a Ferrari.

"The all-car car for the all-man man," Oldsmobile Toronado ad

My reasons for these non-purchases were nominally opposed but substantially identical. The Hayabusa, I told myself, was too unapologetically “zef” for a 34-year-old entrepreneur and semi-respectable suburbanite. The Ferrari, on the other hand, would have been aiming too high. I would have felt embarrassed to own a brand-new Ferrari while not having all the other things that you’re supposed to have in order to own a brand-new Ferrari: eight-figure net worth, private jet, corner office. I thought people would call me “fake rich” and other various sobriquets trotted out by the Internet any time somebody has the nerve to borrow money from a bank for a car that makes them truly happy. (Little did I know that the Internet would eventually evolve to the point that some incel nebbish could buy a used Ferrari and have an actual fanbase for having done so.) The wise and self-aware thing to do would have been to immediately buy both vehicles and subsequently extend a sincere middle finger to society as a whole. But I did no such thing.

It would be remiss of me not to mention that I spent much of the “noughties” settling and giving in and giving up. I don’t want to oversell that aspect of my life: I still did a lot of club racing and binge drinking and Brioni shopping and stripper-banging. But I passively accepted a lot of things I didn’t like about my life, from the state of my marriage to my orthopedic surgeon’s refusal to give me a LARS ligament for my right knee so I could keep riding half-pipes on my BMX bike, because I thought that I was supposed to settle down and just accept what I didn’t like. I thought that was part of growing up.

It took a few bona fide tragedies, including a particularly unpleasant six-month period when three of my fellow racers died at events in which I was participating, to authentically revamp my approach to life. I stopped worrying about what was happening with my homeowners association, which lowered my blood pressure. I stopped worrying about whether I was “good enough” for various women and started just sleeping with them. I canceled my plans to buy some enormous 8,000-square-foot McMonstrosity because I stopped caring about what other people thought about my house. I stopped thinking about making money all the time, and as if by magic I stopped making real money. That part I kinda miss, to be honest.

Eventually I came to realize which restrictions and rules in my life were real and which were self-imposed bullshit. Examples: I need to work a job to pay my bills. But I don’t need a corporate career. I don’t want to be a corporate-career person. I need to look after my son. But that doesn’t mean that I can’t skip his birthday party to go to an awesome party in the desert with Millennial van girls. It does, however, mean that I’ll probably take him to Disney World out of guilt. When I ran TTAC, I knew that we needed to make numbers to stay alive. But I didn’t do slideshows or a bunch of Top 10 lists or Buzzfeed-style garbage, because I’d rather die on my feet than live on my knees.

I need to own a sensible car for me and my son. But it doesn’t have to have four doors, and it doesn’t have to be raised a foot off the fucking ground for no reason and it doesn’t have to look like a suppository for constipation relief. My car doesn’t need to be capable of carrying furniture. I buy furniture twice a year. I’ll have it delivered. My car doesn’t need to be capable of carrying six people. If I ever have a situation where I need to take six people somewhere, I’ll rent that car. My car does not need to shift itself or steer itself or apply its own brakes. I can do that myself. My car does not need to shield me from the world with a tank-turret beltline or tinted windows or some faux-imposing bluff-faced visage.

In last week’s column, I said that no authentic man has ever longed for a crossover. And some of you, predictably, tried to come up with exceptions, with which I will now summarily dispense. In particular, I want to discuss the Forester XT, because it came up more often than any other example. Sure, the Forester XT is great. You know what’s better? A Subaru STi. Why would you buy a Forester XT if you could have an STi? Let’s hear your explanation for that. Nah, forget it. I’ve already heard the excuse for getting an XT over an STi:

The Forester XT is, basically, the STi for men who are afraid of their wives. If you’re afraid of your wife, that’s your business, but don’t get all butthurt when I refuse to be the same way.

What about the AMG crossovers and whatnot? The same thing applies: it’s the henpecked variant of the C63 or SL-whatever. The Porsche Cayenne or Macan? Unless you’re towing your Club Racing 911 to Watkins Glen with the thing, I’m going to sit on my motorcycle and laugh at you in traffic. Do I like the Mazda CX-5? Absolutely. Would I rather have a proper Mazda sedan or hatchback? Of course.

I’m going to misquote Jules from Pulp Fiction here: They could make a CR-V that broke the sound barrier in second gear and laps the Nurburging in seven minutes flat, but I wouldn’t know, because I wouldn’t drive the filthy motha’ucka. Nobody’s going to make me own a crossover. Even though I have a child, and a girlfriend, and a house in the suburbs, and a job where they don’t let me wear a tank top to the office. If that makes me a caveman, or a reactionary, or a racist, or whatever other bad words you learned at Hugbox University, so be it.

But here’s the insight: Nobody can make you drive a crossover, either. They’re compromised vehicles, and you don’t need to compromise. Go get the car you want. Even if you can easily imagine a scenario that could possibly take place where you might theoretically use a crossover one day a year. It’s okay. It will work out. You’ll find a way to not need a gutless 4000-pound wimp-wagon that gets 20 mpg despite being unable to make it up a hill in fourth gear.

In fact, humanity got all the way to the moon without having so much as a single front-wheel drive, car-based crossover. The Berlin Wall fell without a Hyundai Santa Fe tugging fecklessly at the thing with a Class II dealer-installed tow hitch. Steve McQueen is on record as having never even seen a crossover. Jimmy Page wears sunglasses all the time now because he doesn’t want to look at your Kia Sorento.

Listen to me. I’m serious. I know you think that you need to settle. Because you have a respectable job now and you don’t think your career will advance if you show up to work on a Hayabusa. Because you’re marrying a lovely woman who spent the years from 2003 to 2007 waking up every weekend morning face-down in the rec room of the Sigma Chi house and who is now taking out all her aggression on you just because you’re so pathetically grateful not to be alone that you don’t bite back. Because you have “fur babies” and two names on a lease. Because you’ve posed for a series of emasculating engagement pictures where you look lovingly at her and she faces the camera triumphantly like Peter Capstick holding the bloody head of an impala.

You might think you have to settle. But you don’t. You could walk out on everything right now and it would be okay. Everybody would survive. Unless you have an actual human child who depends on you, there’s nothing to stop you from swinging a leg over your Hayabusa and high-tailing it to the frontier, wherever that might be for you. Very few things are as permanent, as imposing, as limiting as they might seem.

I’m not telling you all of this to be a dick. I’m not trying to belittle your carefully-constructed life, your entry-level job and your hopeful self-image, your craft beer and your precious weekend mini-parties. Think of me as … ah, fuck it, Coleridge wrote it better:

It is an ancient Mariner,
And he stoppeth one of three.
‘By thy long grey beard and glittering eye,
Now wherefore stopp’st thou me?

The Bridegroom’s doors are opened wide,
And I am next of kin;
The guests are met, the feast is set:
May’st hear the merry din.’

He holds him with his skinny hand,
‘There was a ship,’ quoth he.

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505 Comments on “No Fixed Abode: The First Settlers...”


  • avatar
    RideHeight

    I just think of all the CUVs that daily are sold in the time it took to write this Mennen Manifesto.

  • avatar
    olddavid

    You’re trying way too hard. Self-knowledge is a great thing – once found. A truly secure human has no need to convince anyone else.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      And you’re trying to convince me of this because…

      • 0 avatar
        olddavid

        You mis-interpret my intent. Hierarchy of needs should be your next step. If you want. Maslow has some great therapies.

        • 0 avatar
          windnsea00

          I am a few years younger than Jack and enjoyed this piece, the greater message of controlling your life is a good takeaway. The micro aspect of having to degrade one’s choice to prove the point, while entertaining (I don’t care for crossovers either), showcases insecurities.

          Probably a piece Jack will look back at 10-20 years from now and see how “young” his mindset was, but one must embrace who they are now, even if they disagree with it in the future.

      • 0 avatar
        dantes_inferno

        @Jack Baruth:And you’re trying to convince me of this because…

        YES! Now THAT’S my kind of response! (high-five)

    • 0 avatar
      TrailerTrash

      “s I unsteadily unbuttoned the blouse of a woman who was a toddler back when I started driving my father’s 733i”

      Really?

      No, olddavid, it is far more silly than this.

      Watching Jack’s writing grow(?) these past years on TTAC is like watching a turtle turn over from its backside.

      It is painful.

      A sort of struggle to be sophisticated yet repeatedly grab and embrace the inner monkey.
      To seek and wrestle with the poetry of intellect, yet get a hard on at the image of a young breast popping up in his mind.

      There will never be peace on earth. I give up thinking the maturing of man’s mind will ever allow it. Yes…crime is falling and we have made improvements…but writing like this takes away my faith in guys I once thought had it together. Heros fall hard.

      And the dark side is always present and ready to pop up its Inquisition or Nazi mind.

      The hard wired instincts of man will seemingly always overpower the false and hallucinations or fantasies of self control and free will. I can see Jack involved in a real heavy challenging conversation or task, only to be distracted by a pair of panties. Like my cat seeing a squirrel.

      Jack…enjoy your delusional world.

      • 0 avatar
        dantes_inferno

        @TrailerTrash:Watching Jack’s writing grow(?) these past years on TTAC is like watching a turtle turn over from its backside.

        It is painful.

        And yet you continue to visit TTAC to satisfy your morbid curiosity. Or you’re a masochist. Or both.

    • 0 avatar
      Piston Slap Yo Mama

      olddavid: “A truly secure human has no need to convince anyone else” makes sense regarding that one loudmouth you work with at the insurance adjustor’s office. Problem is, Jack’s vocation is writing. Expressing emotions, his angst and regrets, triumphs. Therefore it’s his DUTY to write columns of opinion that hold the ever shrinking American attention span and to walk the fine line of eloquence and brio that magically keeps the variegated automotive community of high and low IQ’s coming back for more.

    • 0 avatar
      Ol Shel

      You’re completely correct. He’ll never get it, because he begins with the conclusion: that he’s the perfect manifestation of masculinity.

      I’d choose a Forester XT over an STI if I need a decent ride, the ability to carry things, and don’t have a buddy who will haul my STI out of the woods when I get stuck.

      I don’t know if my Element is a “CUV”, but it sure is useful. My toys take care of the play side of things, and they’re chosen for the reward, not what other macho men think I should choose.

      It’s not surprising that the author’s reply to you is defensive and dismissive. That seems to be his defense against reality.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    I met a traveller from an antique land
    Who said: “Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
    Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
    Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
    And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
    Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
    Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
    The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
    And on the pedestal these words appear:
    ‘My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
    Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!’
    Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
    Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
    The lone and level sands stretch far away

    • 0 avatar
      PartsUnknown

      Bryan Cranston does a killer read of this.

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        I know but I’ve loved the poem long before that. I try to use it to keep me grounded given that I’m in a leadership position and everyone at the same level of responsibility as me or above tries to act as if they are the “King of Kings”.

        • 0 avatar
          olddavid

          The mere fact you recognize that caustic behavior makes you a cut above as a leader. The commentary I have seen from you all these years would seem to cement my opinion.

        • 0 avatar
          msquare

          I worked for a company that took a 25 percent stock loss in one day, and it gave the CEO an excuse to have a mass layoff. I saw it as an escape, as my severance would be relatively generous based on my time of service. Free money.

          In the intervening weeks before the ax finally fell, I set up one of the computers in my lab visible from the hallway to scroll those fames words of Ozymandias. Whether anyone picked up the reference is less important than getting that word out. I walked out of the HR office on that fateful day singing George Michael’s “Freedom ’90.”

          I later used Dickens’ “Tis a far, far better thing that I do” to veil my unceremonious exit from a French company years later. If you’re familiar with “A Tale of Two Cities,” they are Sydney Carton’s final words before going to the guillotine. Another case of short-term financial pain, and another case of chewing off a limb. The office was at 50 Broadway in downtown Manhattan, so I was very happy not to be there a few months later on 9/11.

    • 0 avatar
      philadlj

      The “Nothing beside remains” is my favorite part. So plain and abrupt, yet so utterly devastating.

  • avatar
    JimZ

    I think the fundamental misunderstanding is going on the assumption that people buying CUVs are “settling.” 99.99999% of car buyers don’t care about cars outside of “can it get me, my kids, and my s**t where I need to go when I need it.” They’re deaf to the cries of “but wagons are so much better” because *they simply don’t care.*

    • 0 avatar
      Zoom

      Jack’s musings aren’t for the “99”.

    • 0 avatar
      alexndr333

      JimZ, to further your arugment, there are two concepts to consider here: Opportunity cost and ‘satisficing’.

      The first is the idea that the true cost of something is what you have to give up to have it. You give up the opportunities for a bigger house or new furniture when you spend extra money on your Toronado instead of a Delta 88. When we look for a car and consider all the options available, we imperfectly calculate what we have to give up to have that car, and how important the trade-offs are.

      For a simple example, I leased a 2011 CTS-V while I was working and it was a great solution to my driving, ego and status desires. Now, I drive a Spark EV. I could afford more expensive car, but I’m retired and want to spend time and money traveling. As a result, a car gets less of my resources so I can tour overseas.

      Satisficing is the idea that we learn just enough about a decision and its options to craft an acceptable solution to our own problem. Because you and I like cars, we’re willing to learn a lot about car choices – the decision process includes both knowing a lot of details and taking pleasure in the research and the deciding. Most others don’t share that enthusiasm.

      For those folks, it’s not that they ‘simply don’t care’ that a wagon is so much better than an SUV. It’s that they don’t spend as much time thinking about it as you or I; they look around at what their neighbors buy, see what’s on the street, do a bit of internet research, consider if their current car brand has been reliable, and decide that’s enough information to solve their transportation problems. They then get on with all the other decisions in life: Job duties, kid problems, aging parents, leaking washing machine, etc. The driving experience offered by that station wagon takes a lower priority to the CUV’s combination of room for the kids or grandma and the sense of high-riding security and visibility.

      Such folks are neither “deaf” to the cries of the wagon enthusiasts nor simply don’t care. Their interest in cars is more limited than yours or mine, and the explosion of vehicle options causes their decision-making to be even less engaged than in the days of that grand old Toro.

    • 0 avatar
      kuman

      Honestly, after driving CUV, i dont think i’ll be wanting another sedan.

      I’ll sell both my SUV and Sedan to get a better CUV

      All i need now is a fast(er) CUV… a 2.0T forester XT with beefier stabilizer will do i guess… WRX on stilts sounds perfect for me.

    • 0 avatar
      cbrworm

      I care. I have a sporty car with a manual transmission that I want to have, a BMW 5 series that I want to have, a literbike which I rarely ride, but like having and an FX45 – V8 AWD CUV. I drive the CUV more miles per year than the other three combined. I don’t care what others think or what others are driving, but I do care about power, handling, comfort and braking. I also have two kids in kid seats and a stroller. Sometimes a pack and play.

      Dynamically, every other vehicle I have is better, but the CUV is the most comfortable and most useful, especially when driving the kids around – which is at least 50 miles a day. When they are not with me, it is still fun enough to drive that I don’t mind. I am in my mid 40’s, so age may be a factor. Not having to bend down to load and unload the kids and crap is definitely a factor.

      I have owned multiple mini vans, wagons, sedans, sports cars and trucks in my life. My decision isn’t settling, it’s choosing the tool that works best for my needs. I have the other options available to me and this is what I choose. I am a male BTW.

      Ironically, I bought the CUV as something the babysitter could drive that I would be able to take when I needed to tow my trailers or take the kids farther than their schools. The babysitter left and I have been driving the FX45 for the last few years almost exclusively.

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    “evolve to the point that some incel nebbish could buy a used Ferrari and have an actual fanbase for having done so.”

    Ugh, I can’t go a day without hearing about that guy – and I don’t even visit Jalopnik.

  • avatar
    319583076

    We’re expecting our first roast turkey this summer so I traded my Miata for a C300, not the new turbo 4, but the NA, 3.5 liter V6. I think it’s the best-looking V6 sedan available and I love driving it. As for what you think? Neil Young may have said it best, “It doesn’t mean that much to me to mean that much to you.” If only more humans had the courage to act on their convictions…

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      I’m actively seeking a mint, low-mileage 2011-2013 Mercedes Benz AMG C63 to purchase.

      F**k CUVs.

      • 0 avatar
        319583076

        I <3 AMG C63

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        Yes, buy that car.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        Wait… the Cadillac hater in chief wants a used C63 Benz?

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          “Wants” does not equate to “will buy.” I think we all know he’s too stingy and cost-conscious to spring for such an item.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          The C63 is a stout, powerful, perfect chiseled thing the gods made when compared to the Wal-Mart/Alibaba.cn type POS that any Cadillac is.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          The C63 is a stout, powerful, perfect chiseled thing the gods made when compared to the Wal-Mart/Alibaba.cn type POS that any Cadillac is.

          For around 35k to 38k, I Scanjet a 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 year old, CPO factory warrantied, pristine, ultra low mileage, like new C63.

          A China-Mart grade Clack-i-lack ATS 2.0T or CTS 2.0T or 3.6 liter (same motors in Chevys and Buicks) is the same price to $25,000 MORE.

          NO BRAINER OF THE MODERN ERA.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Ah, and there we are. The price point established is impossible without a rebuilt title – which of course means it’s not mint. The car you’re looking for is worth more than you’re willing to pay. And it’s not like a dealer will let something CPO go for $5 less than it’s worth.

            And the used car dream fallacy continues, unabated.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            Corey, I’ve already lined up an out-west, pristine (you will just have to take my word – the car’s never been so much as scratched) 2012 C63 w/33,000 miles for $36,000.

            That’s just one of 5 near identical ones, priced within 3k of each other, I already lined up.

            Absolutely no accidents (not even fender benders) let alone salvage titles.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            What’s holdin up the works?

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            DW I double dog dare you to purchase it.

          • 0 avatar
            suspekt

            I’d take the IS-F…. similar joy factor and can exit the purchase for a minimum depreciation hit… I also think it could be made to sound equally “mean”…..

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            I appreciate the IS-F as th more reliable choice, but it – IMO – can’t remotely approach the C63s aesthetics (like a muscle car for discerning adults) or remotely approach the torque-gobbish, bellowing V8 or yowling when called upon exhaust note of the C63.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            A stock IS-F is a fantastic-sounding car in its own regard, but the M156 is on another plane, and the C63 as a whole comes across as a nicer car.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mercedes-Benz-C-Class-AMG-/371547756731
        http://www.ebay.com/itm/Mercedes-Benz-C-Class-C63-AMG-COUPE-451HP-NAV-REAR-CAM-/401073426482

        Et voila. Sedan and coupe variant options, within age range and with low miles, and minty.

      • 0 avatar
        Kevin Jaeger

        The C63 coupe is God’s own chariot, with what is probably the finest engine ever installed in passenger vehicle. Do it.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        Good choice. Particularly since you know going in what you’re going to be spending on maintenance. The M156 is the best-sounding street engine ever, period.

        • 0 avatar
          MBella

          They’re really not that bad on maintenance. This vintage is past the head bolt issue. The intake manifold bolts loosing up is about the worst thing you can expect. If I bought one, I would snug the intake bolts up right away. Otherwise, a fuel pump might pop up after some miles. The only real major killer is the price of brakes. I would recommend buying one with the standard brakes. They are plenty crazy, and rotors are under $200 a piece, vs. over $800 for the upgraded brake package.

      • 0 avatar
        dantes_inferno

        @DeadWeight: F**k CUVs.

        I second that.

  • avatar

    AMEN.

    I wish I’d written this article as it conveys just about every thought I have on crossovers. And life.

  • avatar
    Chicago Dude

    I don’t truly long for a crossover because I don’t truly long for any car.

    It gets me where I want to go, I’m not tired when I get there, and the trip was enjoyable. At least 50% of vehicles out there meet those needs. Give me any of them.

    • 0 avatar

      Then why are you here? Genuinely curious.

      • 0 avatar
        pdieten

        Don’t know about him, but I’m no different and for me it’s entertainment.

        I don’t want to spend money on a sports car or the care and feeding thereof. I have other things to do with that time and money. I don’t even like the act of driving that much. If I could get a self driving car for my commute I’d be all over it. But this site is still interesting reading nonetheless. I’m perfectly fine living vicariously through the authors. But that’s not what I want for myself. Right now I’m perfectly happy in my 5th-gen Taurus, not least because it’s one of the few cars with an interior large enough to suit my frame and it asks nothing of me except gas and regular maintenance. My wife has a midsize crossover. I encouraged her to buy it. She likes it.

      • 0 avatar
        Chicago Dude

        I like to drive. I like cars. Why wouldn’t I be here?

      • 0 avatar
        heoliverjr

        Boooooo where’s the witty counterpoint, as compatriot to this article’s author and happy owner of a Ford Flex your replies to this matter have been disappointing!

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      I don’t actually enjoy driving all that much.

      I’ve found that cars which actually exist are far less interesting than the cars which might exist.

      Here are some things which keep me interested:

      1) The auto industry is a grand industrial soap opera. I don’t enjoy following sports, but I am fascinated by business — and this industry is more interesting than any sports league I can imagine.

      2) I got sucked in to discussions on this site years ago, back when people didn’t understand the Prius we had at the time, so I had to educate all y’all on what that machine really is (and isn’t). I had to defend my car’s honor! :-)

      3) It’s a good crew here, and I stick around because I learn stuff. I’m unabashedly addicted to information, and so a good S:N means I can get a hit with minimal effort.

      4) My dad was a practical man who took pride in maintaining his vehicles (often in the driveway), and taught me to do the same, and I enjoy the act and study of automotive maintenance.

      5) I want an electric car. But the one I want isn’t on the market yet, so there are a lot of fascinating tradeoffs to be considered until that point. I stumbled on to this blog via a mention on a green car website. There are a lot of developments to follow and discuss.

      I don’t share Jack’s sense of machismo, or the sensibilities of this article. My answer to the question in the article is that I intend to teach my sons what my dad taught me, which means we’ll spend time wrenching together on whatever cars our family happens to be using at the time.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @Luke42 –
        I was at a car show and I grew bored of looking at rows of professionally restored cars. I happened upon a fellow with 2 Datsun Roadsters. One was his resto-mod daily thrasher and the other was his dad’s car and was given to him as a young man. He welled up with pride talking about how he and his dad worked on it together. It wasn’t perfect when compared to the other cars but in my mind it was the best car there because it was more than a cool machine, it was a symbol of something greater.

        I love to drive and for the most part enjoy driving anything. A car or truck or bike is just a machine if it isn’t a symbol of or a part of a greater human experience.

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    Quick question.

    Why should your opinion of someone, based on nothing besides the car they drive, matter to them?

    No, I don’t drive a crossover, nor do I ever plan to, just as I don’t plan on ever not having at least 1 motorcycle in my household. I am just confused by the idea that someone sincerely thinks people are out there changing their car buying decisions based on the judgment of a man who doesn’t know them. Never mind the fact that there are legitimate advantages to crossovers for a wide range of people, and not everybody defines themselves by the cars/bikes/shoes/guitars they own.

    If there’s any lesson to be learned here it’s to do what you want and not worry about judgment from random dudes on the internet. If you want to drive a CR-V, go for it. If you want to drive a 993, go for it. Key here is to do what YOU want… not what JACK BARUTH wants.

    I’m sure this will get the 500+ comments you are looking for as well. Congrats.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Your last point there was the entire point of this article. :)

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        Yep

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        Which point, the clicks or doing what you want? Telling people that choosing a car you don’t agree with is “settling” or “being scared of one’s wife” is pretty much the opposite of telling people to do what they want. Dude seems really adamant, to the point of desperation, to present himself as an authority and arbiter of taste. It’s silly. Buying expensive stuff and being sanctimonious and judgmental doesn’t make you cool.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          The last point you made was about clicks, so I’m prolly talking about that.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            I’m thinking maybe all the responses should be “I made six grand last month working from home…click here to ask me how.”

          • 0 avatar
            darkwing

            Ten reasons this article proves Jack is [a genius/a moron/a bro/a closet feminist/a lizard creature]. #6 will make you cry.

          • 0 avatar
            Quentin

            TTAC seems to average 5 or 6 new posts per day since the latest reinvention. They have apparently dispatched Jack to get more views per post to make up the fact that the main page isn’t changing at the rate that it previously did. There wasn’t a single article posted on Sunday. When was the last time that happened?

          • 0 avatar
            Richard Chen

            Less is more? Aaron Cole left 3 weeks ago, and he was writing a few articles per day. Ironically, the single Presidents’ day article coincided with a local don’t drive due to weather pronouncement.

            Being a news addict, I’m hitting up the corporate cousin at AutoGuide.com more than TTAC these days. Perhaps that’s what VerticalScope really wants…

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            I’m grateful for the reduced number of posts — when Aaron was at the peak of his form it was hard to keep up without spending too much time. I’m not particularly grateful for the increased clickbaitiness of Jack’s columns of late. But I keep reading and commenting, so mission accomplished, I guess.

          • 0 avatar
            Quentin

            Richard – For now, maybe. Eventually, this method is going to end up with the same 10 people commenting on every article and everyone else has walked away.
            dal20402 – I agree that there was a period where it was too much and the pure quantity was overwhelming. I think we’ve hit a point, though, where many sizable news items are completely missed by TTAC. The focus on the fringe of the automotive sphere is just going to get 24 comments by the same guy rather than 2 or 3 posts by 8 different people. Narrowing your influence isn’t the way to grow.

          • 0 avatar

            @all

            The severe lack of posts has more to do with circumstance than a plan. Before Aaron came on, we had Cameron to keep the front page rolling. Now that Aaron is gone, we are down one person, and we don’t have anyone producing news.

            BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!

            We do have someone new starting this weekend and he will make his official debut on Monday. We won’t have a constant wave of content like we did a year ago (I think TTAC was doing 20 posts or so a day then), but we will have news coverage on topics that matter.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I thought the “no NewsBot” WAS the plan, though? There was intentionally no replacement for him, because the content was going toward more editorial in nature?

            New guy is not a NewsBot but general publisher of items?

            (No snark here, genuinely askin.)

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            @ Corey, that is certainly what I got from the “we plan to stop covering news”, and take the site in another direction.

          • 0 avatar

            The round-ups will be coming back, plus we will cover big news items (i.e. Volkswagen) and we’ll be offering up more analysis.

            We will be doing news, just not in the same way we did before, nor at the post volume as before.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Ah ha, AnalysisBot v1.0.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            Here’s one weird trick to drive Internet viewership that the experts don’t want you to know about!

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            If your paying more than $39.22/mon in .West. Virginia, for car Ins. heres’ one Simple Easy Trick.

    • 0 avatar

      H. sapiens always care what other people think. We’re social animals. Some may not care about what other people think of them based on the car they drive. My father certainly didn’t give a sh!t about what people thought of his car. I went to Tufts for a couple of years, where he was chairman of the econ dept at the time of this story, before I went to Berkeley. One day I had his then six year old ’68 Ford Falcon wagon on the campus. I bumped into an acquaintance, rolled down the window. “Is that the Dave Mobile?” he says in a tone that suggests he’s impressed I have a car.

      “No, I reply, it’s my father’s.”

      His demeanor and tone change. “You mean the head of the economics department drives around in THAT THING?!!!!”

  • avatar
    CoreyDL

    Also I hate those sorts of engagement and wedding photos.

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      LITERALLY everybody has a life baked & stuffed with so much outward appearing (by conscious or unconscious design) false narrative that it’s mind-boggling and raises the issue of the human mind being the truly last frontier; wedding photos and the like are shining examples of this artificiality.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        If you opt out of participation in said outward garbage displays – society will label you as selfish.

      • 0 avatar
        Drzhivago138

        Literally everybody? So yourself included, and goatherders in Mongolia, and the Quechua planting their potatoes in Peru, and the Hutterites in South Dakota, and the IT guys in Delhi, and…

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          I should have written “Americans” instead of “people” above.

          I would guess that at least some other nation-state people mimic American myth-acting/playing, but don’t know enough to compile an accurate, itemized list of such peoples.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Asian nations certainly are all about the external show of pretend/wealth/happiness.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            I’m not sure if Freudian theory applies more forcefully (in the event and extent that it does) to the typical male or female pysche:

            http://www.simplypsychology.org/psyche.html?PageSpeed=noscript

            Discuss.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            I also clearly should have written “LITERALLY almost everyone” instead of “LITERALLY everybody.”

            I’m pretty through and through antisocial in a healthy, Thoreau type way, even though I’ve been trapped by meaningless things, fashions, expenses and trends in past times, too.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            DeadWeight – Freud’s theories are interesting and have many detractors.
            The Id’s drive for instant gratification or release is an interesting concept and ironically many religions feel that one must control it i.e. the ego to truly be happy.

            Do we let the little head control the big head?

            That to a great degree fits the whole masculinity rant and 10,000 years of behavior mustn’t be wrong.

            BUT

            It works great without responsibility. As Janice Joplin said in “Me & Bobby McGee” “Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose.”
            Being “responsible” for others, work etc. means you have to chose between dissimilar options.
            The whole discipline of Ethics involves making choices where there are conflicting rights, beliefs,and freedoms.

            The opening lines of the Serenity Prayer come to mind:

            “God grant me the serenity
            to accept the things I cannot change;
            courage to change the things I can;
            and wisdom to know the difference.”

            Jack can rage on all he wants……. it probably will help him sort things out for himself and is great for us to explore our own thoughts and feelings.

            I’m getting the distinct vibe form Jack’s past few articles that he is struggling with the typical “mid-life” issues.

            ….A decrease in weight, a new obsession with exercise and physical appearance.
            …Unhappiness with life and lifestyle that previously made him or her happy.
            …Boredom with people and things that may have previously been of interest.
            …Feeling a need for adventure and change.
            …Questioning the choices and decisions he or she has made in life.
            …Confusion about who he or she is and where his or her life is headed.
            …Anger at his or her spouse and placing blame for feeling tied down.
            …Unable to make decisions about where he or she wants to go in life.
            …Doubt over ever loving his or her spouse and resentment over the marriage.
            …A desire for a new and passionate, intimate relationship.
            A sense of remorse for goals not accomplished.
            …Frequent daydreaming or feelings of nostalgia.
            …Acting on compulsions with food, drugs or alcohol.
            …Greatly increased or decreased sexual desire.
            …Sexual affairs, especially with someone much younger.
            …A desire to achieve a feeling of youthfulness.
            …Greatly increased or decreased ambition.

            Playing the man card versus pussy whipped card benefits whom?

            Is that the author’s own internal dialogue surfacing as the unrestrained Id?

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Is Jack workin out and losing weight?

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            Uh oh! Mom’s mad! Bench presses. I’m going to wail on my pecs and then do my back.

          • 0 avatar
            Chan

            You must have not seen Korean wedding photos, which are in line with broader South Korean pop culture. Nothing is real, and the people there love turning on the TV to see the super-clean super-wealthy super-sanitised version of their country.

      • 0 avatar

        I think a lot of people are taking this screed a bit too seriously. I thoroughly enjoyed it partly because I dislike the whole cross-over concept, and the thought of all those marketing people who must’ve put their heads together to come up with the concept (a little smaller than an SUV, with a truncated rear end so it doesn’t look like a station wagon, and high enough off the ground to slip through the SUV CAFE loophole). It’s also a damn fun piece of writing.

        But I don’t go “neener neener neener” at my friends who have crossovers. In fact, I did advise my cousin and her husband to look at a Forester because when they told me what they wanted out of a car–safety, reliability, fun, ease of putting the kid in the car seat, and a reasonable price tag (not that they need the latter)–I thought it would do all the above reasonably well. His other car is a ’94 3 series convertible, which he bought new. They are very happy with the Forester.

        • 0 avatar
          dantes_inferno

          > I think a lot of people are taking this screed a bit too seriously.

          I definitely concur.

          To add to this astute observation, those are the types of people who tend to take THEMSELVES way too seriously as well.

      • 0 avatar
        tresmonos

        I have a 40k wedding reception that is still being financed (not by me) for a marriage that didn’t last 2 years.

        I mean, WTF.

        • 0 avatar
          PrincipalDan

          @tresmonos, you know that relationship between the amount of money spent on a wedding and the likelihood of divorce is directly related?

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          WTF indeed Tres.

          “Honey f the wedding I want the 40K from your parents for some real estate”

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            We have friends that spent 150k on their wedding and another pair of “friends” that spent 250k on their wedding (and this was in 2006).

            I have a much closer friend who owns a plastic injection molding business (supplier to automotive OEMs) who is genuinely wealthy who did it right and invited two dozen family & friends to Antigua where he and his non-gold digger, awesome girlfriend got married – best wedding and party ever.

      • 0 avatar
        FreedMike

        I think practically anything associated with big weddings happens because of the preconceived notions of women. I don’t presume to speak for all men – i.e., I don’t call out their masculinity because of what they drive – but I’d assume most don’t care about the wedding, aside from knowing when to show up.

        So women are trapped in their own interpretation of “what society wants” too. Why? Follow the money.

        Next time around, I’m going to the justice of the peace and having a nice party for my friends and family in a backyard.

        • 0 avatar
          S2k Chris

          “I think practically anything associated with big weddings happens because of the preconceived notions of women.”

          Absolutely. But, OTOH, most women only ever want one. Most flamboyant car purchases happen because of the preconceived notions of men, and we chase the next great sports car relentlessly.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            “Absolutely. But, OTOH, most women only ever want one.”

            Do they not WANT more than one, or can they not find someone to PAY for more than one?

            That’s the question. Mom and Dad are probably not inclined to sink another five figures into divorced daughter’s second wedding.

        • 0 avatar
          darkwing

          White dress…white car. Coincidence?

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          and the open bar.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          Wedding size often is cultural. Italians for example tend to have very large expensive weddings.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Catholics!

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            CoreyDL – Catholics are usually Italian….

            “Roman” Catholic Church………. Roman should be a dead giveaway.

            I’m Catholic (not Italian) and my wife wanted a big wedding. I told her we could afford a big wedding or spend a month in Greece like she wanted……. we went to Greece for over a month.

            She got wrapped up in the whole “guilt” thing (That is a Catholic trait). I told her to filter her list this way, “if you haven’t talked directly to or seen someone in person in the last 3 months WTF should they come?”
            Her 200 name list popped down to 60 rather quickly.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            RE: “Catholics are usually Italian”

            Well, can’t agree there, because:

            Mexico
            Germany
            Ireland
            Most of South America

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            *Southern Germany (Bavaria) is Catholic. Northern Germany (and Frisia, where my ancestors were from) was the birthplace of Lutheranism.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            My mother’s people were Bavarian in ancestry and in their attitudes I can testify to the truth behind: “Bavaria is the Texas of Germany” – Bavarian’s believe they are the best and the rest of the country can kiss their a$$es.

            My father’s people were Swiss who were Calvinists until they married into Catholic families.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            CoreyDL – The word “Catholic” means “on the whole, according to the whole or in general”

            Some say it applies to the Roman Empire since they converted around 300AD.

            It also means “Universal”.

            Early Christians used the term to apply to ALL believers in Christ not just believers of a particular denomination, church, or sect.

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            @PrincipalDan: Another, slightly less negative, use of the analogy would be to say that Bavaria is the Texas of Germany in that its people are what foreigners think the whole country is stereotypically like.

            All Germans are apparently ruddy-faced blondes who drink beer from ornate steins, eat large amounts of wurst and pretzels, wear lederhosen, and love polka. All Americans are apparently overweight, loud, love country music, wear cowboy hats, drive large V8-powered trucks or cars, and carry guns everywhere.

        • 0 avatar
          05lgt

          Hey, you just described my wedding!

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            lol, fist wife me Catholic her Methodist 200 people no idea what was spent (her parents paid for it all) but I suspect per person it was more than was spent on my second one).

            2nd marriage – Me Catholic her Mexican Catholic – almost 500 people on the guest list and we paid for it ourselves. Did it for less than $15,000 and had a great time.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            “fist wife,” Dan?

            Well, whatever floats her boat, I guess…

            (No spell check…FTW)

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            @Drzhivago, you never met my mother’s people. :-) The oldest living relatives (in my childhood) were keenly aware that the family had left Germany after the unification of the 1870s because they felt that the Catholic Kingdoms didn’t have enough power and they didn’t trust those darn Lutherans.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @principaldan

            Dey wuz right, dawg!

            The Kingdom of Bavaria would certainly not have enacted the Schlieffen Plan.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          @Freed

          The last time I had a conversation about a wedding I said I wanted to hold a classic car show beforehand. Korrin just rolled her eyes at me and laughed.

        • 0 avatar
          stuki

          Big Weddings are the “Experience” versions of Porsche SUVs and Range Rovers: “Look how much money “we” have. IOW, attempted rebuttals to the non married contingent of an aging hen circle. Who can reliably be counted on to insist they are somehow better off being pumped and dumped, occasionally even by someone 3 years their junior, than Ms Wedding&Rover is for at least attempting to have a life.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        Yep, DeadWeight. At this point it’s just a routine part of the protective armor you need to be considered an equal member of society. As is so much else. Thinking back on it, I’ve spent an astonishing amount of time and money in my life (including getting a law degree from one of the top two law schools in the country) purely for the purpose of avoiding being judged or condescdended to by the sort of people who’ve never seen a real obstacle in their entire lives. Mostly, I just want those people to leave me alone, but achieving that goal requires competing with them at least to a draw.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          I work in coordination with many Big Firm attorneys (not going to name names, but over 800 attorneys within their main office in Chicago) who really resent that they work for less intelligent, life-of-leisure people who make more in a year (sometimes far time less than that) than what they’ll manage to save over their entire career.

          And these attorneys have billable rates of $320 to $700 per hour (depending on whether senior associates or equity partners).

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            I won’t reveal my exact billing rate but it’s close enough to $500/hour to make that a reasonable basis for the following math, which shows that working for a big firm is economically nuts — except then there are a bunch of other reasons why it isn’t.

            Of that $500/hour, I take home not quite $100 before taxes. Note that’s $100 per *billable* hour. If you calculate all the hours I spend working I get more like $60/hour.

            $300 goes purely to overhead. Someone’s gotta pay for the water views from the partners’ offices, the books no one uses, and the lavish expense accounts for non-billable stuff like conferences and “client development.” But the amount spent on it is absolutely certifiable. Unfortunately, though, without it you don’t have big firm cachet — and the most lucrative clients won’t hire you because you don’t seem prestigious enough. It’s a self-reinforcing vicious cycle of wasteful spending.

            The final $100 ends up in the partners’ pockets. Which is fine. They deserve some profit for the work they’ve put in.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            To add insult to your lawyer poverty, you’re forced to drive a USED LS! Parish the thought.

            :( The struggle of the big firm lawyer is real!

            /jk

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            It could be worse. You could be Scott Hoy.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            20% split among partners? Nice work if you can get it.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            To be clear, none of that is to complain about my situation, at all — I do just fine. It’s just to further explain why those billing rates aren’t all they seem. We don’t keep most of it — but if we don’t work for a big firm we can’t command nearly the same rate and can’t generate as many hours even at a lower rate.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @Corey

            Oh I won’t hear any detrimental LS talk.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Just teasing. I like Dal and his picky parking rules and LS purchases.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            You and I know that the primary reason the big firms get to represent the big companies is because the Board of Directors is stuffed full of hacks who can say, in the event something goes haywire, “[W]hat? We hired so-and-so because they’re the biggest firm with the most experienced specialists.”

            Attorneys are, as a whole, the least happy, most frustrated class of professionals (by far) I’ve ever some across, with very few exceptions.

            A good friend of mine is a partner at a large (for Detroit area) law firm and between the 65 hour work-week, political back-biting, and overall stress, swears that becoming an attorney was the biggest mistake of his life.

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            Large firm partner: work extremely hard, get paid better than 99% of people who work extremely hard — but much worse than your clients, who are the people you deal with every day. Large firm partners, many of whom are bitter, are ample proof of hedonic adaptation. Whether or not I stay in the firm game I hope I’ll stay grounded enough to avoid that.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Just make sure Al Pacino isn’t your managing director and you’ll be fine.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            Yeah, he was the devil incarnate to work with.

  • avatar
    multicam

    I don’t know. I asked myself the same question about settling last year. I told my wife I only had one year left in Hawaii, and I was going to spend it driving the car I wanted, damn it. To my surprise she said “get the Wrangler!” And not in the tone that indicated she’d hold it against me for the rest of my life.

    So I bought the 1994 4.0L MT YJ which I now daily drive, knowing full well her good will towards the vehicle wouldn’t last and we’d fight over how much time I would end up wrenching on it. And so it came to be. But I didn’t settle.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      Well done!

      • 0 avatar
        VoGo

        Now I’m confused. If I buy a tall vehicle that doesn’t prioritize driving pleasure, I have settled and am not an authentic man.

        But if I buy a tall vehicle that doesn’t prioritize driving pleasure but has a Jeep logo, then I AM an authentic man.

        This is so complicated. Can you just print out a list of the cars I have to buy to prove my manhood?

        • 0 avatar
          Jack Baruth

          #1. Accord Coupe
          #2. Pagani Huyara

          You’re welcome.

          • 0 avatar
            VoGo

            Damn! I got the Accord sedan thinking it would better project my masculinity by telling the world I had impregnated someone 3 times.

          • 0 avatar
            Toad

            I’ve owned both an Accord Coupe (SEi) and a 1970’s era Wrangler with a V8,stick, and even sidepipes (hey, it was the 80’s). Loved them both.

            And now I drive a crossover (Murano) because I like it. Right now I don’t want another truck (tired of piloting a huge vehicle) and I don’t like cars (too low to the ground for my taste). So my crossover does want I want it to do and makes me happy doing it.

            If I had the room in my driveway I might buy a Wrangler for kicks, although a military surplus M1078 might be more fun. But since I have room for one car I am happier with the choice I made than anything else I saw on the market.

            I have found the serenity to ignore the dicks driving bro trucks, big men in little Miatas, small women in big Denalis, idiot children in riced out Civics, middle aged/class men who suddenly become fanatical Harley Guys, the list goes on. If people wonder about my man card because I drive a crossover I just don’t care.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Other than Jack, I don’t know anyone that would consider a 2 dr Accord Coupe a cock-mobile.

          • 0 avatar
            racer-esq.

            Thank you for that humor, “You’re welcome” is appropriate after such a great joke.

          • 0 avatar
            stuki

            @VoGo

            When was the last time you saw children in the back of a pimp’s Caddy?

        • 0 avatar
          multicam

          VoGo, I think the point is it’s exactly the vehicle I wanted to drive, with no concessions whatsoever. It met my three criteria – 1. 2006 or older Wrangler with 2. manual transmission and 3. the old 4.0L inline six. (There’s no way Jack could have known these were my buying criteria but I think he could sense something along these lines when I said “1994”).

          Had I bought a 2015 lifted Rubicon- even one with two doors, not four- it would have been a compromise. It would have made much more sense for my current occupation, income and skill level as a mechanic- but deep down, I would know it wasn’t what I really wanted and (despite the ride height and Jeep badge) I had capitulated to outside pressures. And I wouldn’t learn a thing about working on vehicles, which was a major goal of mine.

          • 0 avatar
            an innocent man

            @VoGo

            “Damn! I got the Accord sedan thinking it would better project my masculinity by telling the world I had impregnated someone 3 times.”

            Only if it’s 3 different women. If it’s the same woman 3 times, it just means she has you wrapped.

          • 0 avatar
            VoGo

            Multicam,
            I am honestly happy for you. I hope you enjoy the hell out of that Wrangler.

            If Jack’s point is that I should drive what I want to drive, great. If his point is that I can’t be a man ‘cuz I don’t smoke the same cigarettes as him, then NO.

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    Jack, well said for a wannabe grown up.

    Sometime in the mid 1980’s to late 1990’s in western first world societies the notion of what ‘makes a man’ changed.

    From the emergence of democratic, egalitarian societies, what made a man was someone who devoted his life to his family. Who sacrificed to make their lives better, even if this meant sublimating his adolescent desires or volunteering to fight for his country overseas against an enemy determined to destroy his way of life.

    These men, stayed with their wives, went to work everyday, moved their families to the best neighbourhood that they could afford and served as a role model for good citizenship.

    They were looked up to, like Ward Cleaver or Jim Anderson in Father Knows Best. They were often members of the Greatest Generation.

    Sometime in the 1980’s media turned on them. Men who committed to their families were portrayed as losers. They became Al Bundy, the failed athlete who drove a Dodge Dart, worked at a dead end job, yet remained loyal to his wife and protective of his family.

    Instead the media built a model of ‘wannabe’ men. Baby Fathers, with little or no commitment to their children. No loyalty to their partner. A ‘me first’ attitude. And like Peter Pan claiming that they need not grow up and put away the toys of childhood.

    Not surprisingly, this has resulted in societal chaos. In the USA for example the average families net income (adjusted for inflation) has declined, education has fallen behind, bankruptcies have increased and the political system appears to be splintering into some form of chaos.

    So Jack, your wannabe persona is not that of a true red blooded Man. A true man came home, drove a station wagon, put his family first and saved so that they could go to College, live in a better neighbourhood and improve both their own lives and the well being of their country.

    Instead of Greg Peck, the media wants us to be behave like Charlie Sheen

    We have traded the Greatest Generation for a bunch of ‘me first’, Peter Pan wannabe, insecure, pseudo men.

    • 0 avatar
      Driver8

      The ‘Greatest Generation’ gave us the Boomers, who gave us Millennials. They collectively got an 18% balloon mortgage on the country and gave us the bill.
      So eff them.

      A true man drives a two seat, manual transmission convertible, and makes his wife drive the station wagon.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        @Driver8; Here in Canada some politicians and media have tried to play the ‘deficit’ card. In reality it is a red herring.

        Between 1993 and 1997 Canada paid off a debt of approximately $60 Billion. Its current debt is less than that.

        And the debts incurred to win WWI and WWII were much higher in proportion to GDP. Paying off the WWII debt still resulted in the most vibrant economy in perhaps centuries.

        And a ‘true man’ never makes a woman do anything, particularly his life partner. He does what is best for the longterm good of his family.

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          Canada is so very screwed (in the same manner as Australia and for similar reasons) as a basic, fiscal matter.

          Few developed nations will see living standards fall as precipitously over the next two decades as Canada.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            Not if oil prices rebound.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            @Deadweight. Based on what facts?
            Canada has:
            1. Low population density.
            2. Abundance of scarce raw materials, including petroleum.
            3. Good public education.
            4. Disparity between old and young population better than in most other 1st world nations.
            5. Existing social safety net.
            6. Relatively low crime rate.
            7. Lower debt to GDP ratio than the majority of the world’s nations (much lower than that of the USA).
            8. Financial institutions that weathered the Great Recession better than those in other nations, largely due to Government restrictions on their activities, rather than their own institutional know-how.
            9. And most of the world’s fresh water supply, something that will become more important than petroleum.

          • 0 avatar
            mikey

            DW…We are way off topic here, but this time I have to agree with you.

            I live here, and I see the decline everyday

          • 0 avatar
            dash riprock

            I would think that most economies that were thought of as advanced in the 1970’s will struggle to maintain their standard of living improvements. The world is a much more competitive place.

        • 0 avatar
          dash riprock

          A little off on the Canada’s national debt, add a zero

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            @Dash, You are correct. Sorry, I cannot edit that comment to add the final zero.

            What is important is that Paul Martin as Finance Minister demonstrated that it could be controlled and paid down in a relatively short period.

            And that according to public statistics as late as 2014 deficit spending represented 0.1% of GDP. http://www.cbc.ca/news/multimedia/canada-s-deficits-and-surpluses-1963-to-2015-1.3042571

          • 0 avatar
            dash riprock

            To replicate the achievement of Paul Martin there will have to be a big surplus in the EI fund to transfer over, and cuts would have to be made to transfer to provinces like was done in the Chretien era. Not saying it was wrong, as we were in a horrible debt/deficit position.

            Funny enough the genesis of our debt troubles was Trudeau senior telling all that deficits were not a problem. Deja vu all over again for us canadians

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          mikey – I don’t see that but then again I don’t live in Central Canada.

          Arthur Dailey
          There are always those that see doom and gloom for any country that tries to find balance between socialism and capitalism.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      nevermind what foppish prisses men dressed like in the 17th century.

    • 0 avatar
      SaulTigh

      I don’t revere the “Greatest Generation” as much as some because a lot of what made them great was circumstance. Born in a depression, tempered in a World War, and then came home to a historically unnatural post-war boom. They turned around and raised the boomers, who as we know are much more hit-and-miss. I’m very fortunate to have been raised by a boomer than did better in all aspects than his own “greatest generation” father, and instilled in me much of what you say you value above. This has set me up well to succeed, and I am.

      I also think America is flat out doomed.

      • 0 avatar
        JimZ

        every generation thinks the next one is doomed.

        besides, it’s not like any of this is new; the ink was barely even dry on the Constitution before Congress took its first s**t on it via the Alien and Sedition Acts.

    • 0 avatar
      VoGo

      I suspect that since the dawn of time, every generation has thought this load of [email protected] about the succeeding generation.

      “Look at kids today. They plant seed. Sit on butts all day for it grow. Then harvest and eat. Kids soft. Back in old day, Grug kill his food with club. Go hunt in forest for wooly mammoth and kill with bare hands. Grug is real man.”

      The facts are that in the US, divorce rates are falling and fathers are more devoted to parenting than they have ever been.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        I can kill a mammoth with just a glare, like Chuck Norris.

        • 0 avatar
          dantes_inferno

          @CoreyDL:I can kill a mammoth with just a glare, like Chuck Norris.

          You’ll need to step up your game. Chuck Norris can kill a herd of Mammoths with his thoughts alone.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        @vogo: divorce rates only apply to those who actually get married. What counts are single parent families. Single parent families have a high correlation to poverty levels.

        The number of single parent families in the USA nearly doubled from 1960 to 2013.

        • 0 avatar
          VoGo

          Your statistics are suspect, AD. Regardless, people are sick of hearing old men tell them how superior they think they are, just because they are cranky from getting up to pee 3 times every night.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            @Vogo: Here are some examples, according to one it has actually tripled, I just averaged them:

            http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/09/the-mysterious-and-alarming-rise-of-single-parenthood-in-america/279203/

            https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/the-number-of-children-living-in-single-parent-homes-has-nearly-doubled-in

            http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/12/22/less-than-half-of-u-s-kids-today-live-in-a-traditional-family/

            https://singlemotherguide.com/single-mother-statistics/

            As to Old Guys being cranky. That statement has no more merit, than your denial of the actual statistics. Economic statistics prove that the Old Guys were right.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            Not true, I only piss twice a night.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          All by design.

          “The earliest precedent in no-fault divorce laws was originally enacted in Russia shortly after the Bolshevik Revolution. They were legislated in the series of decrees that issued in early 1918. The decrees included nonjudicial dissolution of marriage by either party and mandatory provision of child-support.[2] The purpose of the Soviet no-fault divorce laws was ideological, intended to revolutionize society at every level.[3] They were the subject of significant revisional efforts from World War II to the 1960s. Major revisions were concluded in 1968.

          In the 1925 Soviet conference to draft the Family Law of 1926, people debated whether marriages should even be registered. Nikolai Krylenko, a chief architect of the Soviet law of marriage and leading theorist of “socialist legality” in the 1920s and 1930s, described the purpose of divorce without restraint as a step toward the ultimate goal of the abolition of marriage, thereby establishing the socialist transformation of society.

          California was the first U.S. state to adopt what are now called “no-fault” divorces in the United States in 1969.[4] California’s law was framed on an earlier and roughly contemporaneous effort, of the non-governmental organization, National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, which began drafting a model of no-fault divorce statute for states to consider in 1967.[5] The Soviet 1968 and California 1969 no-fault divorce laws bore many detailed similarities of terminology, substance, and procedure”

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No-fault_divorce

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            I don’t understand why some people believe it’s preferable to force people to remain in broken relationships.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            28-Cars-Later – once again proof that the ills of the western world stem from those godless socialist commies, oh and California which is on the LEFT coast.

            Men need to be men and women need to learn their place……

            To hear Jack tell it, it would be on her knees and wearing a T-shirt that says, “let go of my ears, I know what I’m doing.”

            Isn’t that what liberation is all about?

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            It’s easy to bag on no fault divorce…until you divorce a lying, manipulative nutbag like my ex, who for months had every relevant official in my county utterly convinced that I was abusive.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Riddle me this, why are concepts first developed and fielded by the Soviets in 1925 being implemented in the US circa 1970? Did folks in the US suddenly say my my those plucky little Bolsheviks are right! Especially on the part about the abolition of marriage and devolution of society. We must get this codified into US law!

            But seriously, why would the US adopt ideas of its Cold War enemies?

            “Active measures (Russian: активные мероприятия) is a Soviet term for the actions of political warfare conducted by the Soviet security services (Cheka, OGPU, NKVD, KGB) to influence the course of world events, in addition to collecting intelligence and producing “politically correct” assessment of it.[1] Active measures ranged “from media manipulations to special actions involving various degrees of violence”. They were used both abroad and domestically. They included disinformation, propaganda, counterfeiting official documents, assassinations, and political repression, such as penetration into churches, and persecution of political dissidents”

            “According to Oleg Kalugin,

            the Soviet intelligence was really unparalleled. … The KGB programs — which would run all sorts of congresses, peace congresses, youth congresses, festivals, women’s movements, trade union movements, campaigns against U.S. missiles in Europe, campaigns against neutron weapons, allegations that AIDS… was invented by the CIA… all sorts of forgeries and faked material — [were] targeted at politicians, the academic community, at the public at large.”

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Active_measures

            Nah Soviet intelligence would never use money and influence to subvert American society, especially since marriage and procreation is at the heart of a stable growing society. Never mind the wealth gap between never married females is significantly lower than males, and that marriage creates wealth. No way our sworn enemies would ever push such an idea right in the heart of the Cold War.

            Even if I am completely wrong, lets learn to read between the lines a little. Very little in life is pure black and white.

            http://www.vanneman.umd.edu/socy441/trends/divorce.html

            http://www.socwomen.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/fact_2-2010-wealth.pdf

            https://source.wustl.edu/2003/11/americans-have-the-best-chance-of-becoming-wealthy-if-they-marry-but-remain-childless-study-shows/

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            28-Cars-Later- very interesting. The USA has done its share too.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            US foreign policy has destabilized a good chunk of the world in just the last twenty years, let alone the Cold War. If just ten percent of this energy/money were spent countering the subversion described I can’t help but think what a better position my society would be in right now (or more on topic, building road infrastructure).

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            28, I doubt Bolshevism had anything to do with the advent of no-fault divorce. It had more to do with the realization that long, nasty divorce cases did nothing but drain both parties’ resources and hurt the kids who were unfortunate enough to be caught up in it.

            (By the way…California’s “Soviet style” divorce statutes were signed into law by that famous Communist Ronald Reagan, who went through a divorce himself, and probably saw enough horrid Hollywood divorces to know how bad the previous “at fault” system was.)

        • 0 avatar
          Zykotec

          Marriage as an institution is almost as archaic as the caveman example above, so good for you guys :)
          Now, how to get rid of all those pesky christians in politics?..

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Trouble is that institution built a relatively stable society. Now it’s been subverted and we’re living in the result, for better or worse.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            28-Cars-Later –
            “Trouble is that institution built a relatively stable society. Now it’s been subverted and we’re living in the result, for better or worse.”

            Too true.

      • 0 avatar
        fincar1

        When I look at my daughter and her husband I have hope for the future of the country. But it’s obvious that there are also a lot of dindus out there.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      “Instead of Greg Peck, the media wants us to be behave like Charlie Sheen”

      Right, because the media always portrays Charlie Sheen as such a swell guy…

    • 0 avatar
      tresmonos

      Nice job in glossing over the enormous misogyny that this generation wielded. Your post is a waste of space.

      The ‘me first’ generation has to be that way due to how the greatest generation mishandled their wealth and power post ww2. The only thing we’ll get is what the hospitals, nursing homes and funeral parlors won’t suck up prior to their departure. “Greatest generation: Me first.”

      When you socially condition people into believing they have no options besides the gov’t draw (created by the greatest generation to preserve their 401k worth – “Me first”), they tend to become dependent and not want to work. Skilled jobs? Oh don’t mind those – Mexico has a better public education in trades than the USA because we want to keep taxes super low… “Me first.” How about the greatest generation opens up all the mills and factories that used to make product here and employ us? Oh that’s right, the greatest generation is probably probably buying a bunch of garbage made over seas because the greatest generation is a hypocritical piece of sh1t and won’t pony up for the plethora of goods made in your great country. The greatest generation may only provide for yourself and your retirement account. “Me first.”

      major edit: tried to take the personal attacks out because I personified you and I’m tired of hearing of the greatest generation that screwed the pooch when they had so much capability of really making this country great. Please accept my apologies for the personal attacks.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        @tresmonos: Wasn’t it the Greatest Generation, at least in Canada that created the social safety net that protected their grandparents, parents and children by providing healthcare, more accessible education, etc? They were willing to pay taxes in return for societal benefits.

        It is the ‘Me First’ generation that constantly whines about paying taxes and wanting things their own way rather than concerning themselves with society and the future. Thus ‘free trade’ with 3rd world nations, growing income disparity, lower taxes for the highest income earners, failing public education systems and degrading infrastructures.

        • 0 avatar
          tresmonos

          It’s too late – major blue collar job losses occurred in the 1990’s through the mid 2000’s. That’s the work force of generation X and prior. The me first generation is likely the offspring from the workers who didn’t get caught up in the poverty cycle, then below them is the insurmountable quantity of society that is stuck. The me first generation has nothing to do with that. To me, that’s on the ‘greatest generation.’ The ‘me first’ generation has been conditions by my parents’ generation – life has been so good and it’s ok if you can’t get a career because the economy sucks. You’ll stay at home and suck on our resources.

          No one has the heart to kick their kids out in the cold and make them work. My plant is hiring for jobs that shouldn’t exist – UAW high paying wages. Our retention rate is literally 20%. Those who would show up to work and work hard are usually too uneducated enough to realize they will fail the drug test and ruin a once in a lifetime opportunity. Those that are clean, show up for a week or two and don’t want to work then they quit. The latter population is on ‘those who provided and did right by the greatest generation.’

          Loosen those idiotic drug standards and give me my people and I will show you a working generation.

          Edit: the world is what you make of it. If you don’t like the me first generation, and you’re over the age of 40 – blame your peers. I hate seeing the turnover in my plant. It makes me worry for the future. What kind of economy can be propped up by this? There isn’t a need for survival. My parents simulated that need for me by kicking me out and seeing how life was without that safety net.

          But don’t you god [email protected] make a picturesque portrait of the greatest generation. My country has many systemic issues from those greedy @sshats

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Long interview on the subject but worth the watch.

            youtu.be/wwmOkaKh3-s?t=91

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            @Tresmonos. How can you blame the Greatest Generation when they were born prior to WWII? The last President from that generation was Bush the Senior. The youngest of them would have been born no later than 1927.

            You might have a bone to pick with those born during the Great Depression and WWII a relatively small generation, which benefited greatly from external events. David Foot writes extensively on this.

            By the time that America became dependent upon Chinese imports, trade and investment the Boomers had long since taken over the economy.

            Point the finger at them and their Greed is Good mantra.

          • 0 avatar
            tresmonos

            Arthur, your blame for the ‘me first’ mentality still is faulty. It’s not the kids, its the parents and economic conditions. Waiting on some good points from you. Better hurry before you have to cancel the internet because a papaya costs $25 CAD.

            You Canadians are so close to economic collapse that your wish for a rebirth of the greatest generation just may come true with the ‘me first’ kids. They’ll be digging up your grave to get scraps of gold from your fillings to pawn for food. I suppose I should have invested in Canadian miners before last week, eh? Damn, missed opportunity.

    • 0 avatar

      @Arthur Dailey

      Average income has declined even as CEO earnings have gone from about 20 times the lowest paid person in the company to 400 times the lowest paid person. Unions have been undercut since at least the Reagan administration. whole industries have been offshored. And then there are the big bankers. It should be required as part of American citizenship to see The Big Short.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        @David, Agree 100%. Or Other People’s Money. Coincidentally starring Greg Peck as the old school builder of a business.

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Current total compensation (base pay plus stock plus benefits and other compensation) ratios between CEO and “average” (median?) compensated employees at same corporation (publicly traded):

        U.S.A – 440 to 1

        U.K. – 420 to 1

        Germany – 240 to 1

        Japan – 100 to 1

        The rate of such compensation discrepancy has been and is still accelerating since the 1960s (when the average American CEO of a Fortune 500 Company made 60x what the average employee did).

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          then for another interesting bit of info, look up what the marginal tax rates were after WWII. How would you like 91% for anything over $200,000/yr?

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            @JimZ, as Bernie Sanders says: “I’m not as much of a socialist on taxes as Dwight Eisenhower was.”

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Just a tad sensationalist, $200,000 in 1955 is $1,768,029.85 in 2016 per BLS.

            http://www.bls.gov/data/inflation_calculator.htm

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I could make that much money in five seconds. Gosh!

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            A 90% tax rate on income over $2 million would change a lot of things, especially for CEOs.

            That’s not my #1 ask for tax policy, though. Much more important to:

            1) restore some semblance of meaningful rates on capital gains, to enough of a degree to avoid the current situation where idle heirs pay far lower taxes than working professionals;
            2) lower the corporate tax (which is counterproductive at the current rate) and make up for it by increasing taxes on dividends and zealously enforcing taxation on executive perks; and
            3) learn to distinguish between expatriates who are regular working people and tax cheats with major assets parked overseas. We’re too hard on the former and not nearly hard enough on the latter.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Oh if you’re an expat you bes’ make FO SHO you don’t make over $72k a year or whatever the specific amount.

          • 0 avatar
            FreedMike

            I made that last month working out of my house. Here’s how….

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        @tresmonos:
        Who do you blame for the ‘me first’ attitude: the people who hold that attitude, the media that propagated that attitude, their teachers or their parents? Seems to me that blaming the parents who took the opposite attitude with their lives may be a little disingenuous.

        Blaming a generation that left the workplace over 3 decades ago for the turnover in your workplace and the attitudes of their grandchildren or great grandchildren is certainly lacking in logic.

        As for the Canadian economy, Canada rode out the Great Recession with much less disruption than the US economy. No crash in housing prices, bankrupt financial institutions or massive increase in personal bankruptcies. The natural resources and raw materials that we have in abundance will rise in value when the world economy recovers. And our social safety net, helps to limit disruptions. Canada actually spend less per capita on hospitalization/medical than the USA, yet has universal health care.

        Unfortunately our manufacturing sector is suffering, particularly those organizations related to auto manufacturing. We were much better off under the Auto Pact but Boomer politicians and their successors have decided that free trade with 3rd world nations is more important than good jobs at home.

        And paving over our best Southern Ontario farmland for subdivisions while relying on cheap imported fruit/vegetables has again proven to be a misguided policy. However papayas are easily replaced by in season locally grown food.

        “The Capitalists will sell us the rope that we will use to hang them”. Allegedly said by Lenin. That is debatable but the truth of it is not.

        • 0 avatar
          tresmonos

          The wealth of the west was due to the mobilization for WW2. Not because of the bootstraps of my great grandparents. Hitler berthed your ideals.

          You can blame your kids all you want, but they’re worthless because of you. I didn’t have control over the media when I was impressionable. I didn’t have the luxury to mold my mind and work ethic when I was developing because I was a child. My parents did that for me. You can blame your peers, your parents and yourself, so thanks for nuttin’ Arthur.

          I hope you’re right about Canada. Only so many people can work in a mine or own water rights. You had better hope those land and water rights owners’ share the wealth or your country is f*cked. I know one thing, I wouldn’t want to live in Ontario and do what I’m doing in the states, because I don’t want to pay 200% for a house that has yet to devalue or pay $2/gal in taxes. Nor do I want to pay for your inflation.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            Agree that the rise of Canada and the US was in large part due to WWII. However the economic policies after the war helped this to continue until at least the first OPEC crisis.

            Things only truly went downhill with the emergence of multiple free trade agreements with 3rd world nations. No matter how efficient your labour it is hard to compete with organizations operating in countries where the workers have little to no rights, and there is not environmental or safety legislation.

            Blaming our parents for our woes is something that children do, but as adults we should realize that we are our own people and take responsibility for our own actions.

            My grandparents were all immigrants to the New World. Pulled themselves up by the bootstraps and made sure that my parents had a better life than they did.

            Unfortunately I cannot do the same for my children. But I have dedicated much of my life to ensuring that they grew up in a good neighbourhood, took part in recreational activities, received a good education and always had a safe and reliable, if not stylish vehicle to ride/drive in.

            Today our gas is the equivalent of $4.00 US per gallon.

            Our housing is generally more expensive. But then we did not have the massive devaluation that happened in the US.

            As for economic diversification. In Southern Ontario financial institutions, R&D facilities, high tech companies, medical and educational organizations and the different levels of government are generally the largest employers.

          • 0 avatar
            tresmonos

            I don’t have the desire to live that far north again, nor do I feel at home in your country. I do have many positive things to say about living in Toronto: it was very clean, organized and well maintained. I didn’t like the socioeconomic segregation, but that’s everywhere. I thoroughly enjoyed the night life (when I wasn’t working weekends or being too cheap to leave my Homewood Suites in Oakville).

            As for blaming the parents – what else can you say about who someone turns out to be when they hit age 18? Spoiled from a good economy and their household environment.

            I sure hope you’re wrong about the general sentiment. If that’s what my future economy will rely on, it’s going to be a hard remaining 20-30 work years.

        • 0 avatar
          Whatnext

          The biggest mistake we ever made was letting the corporate controlled policians (left and right) sell out solid manufacturing jobs to places like China. Why we quietly watched jobs go offshore to an authoritarian state hellbent on polluting the planet is one of the great mysteries of the last two decades.

          • 0 avatar
            highdesertcat

            IIRC, this practice of “sell out solid manufacturing jobs to places like China” started during Reagan, and accelerated during Clinton.

            It was done because it was good for the majority of Americans. It improved the lifestyles of the majority of Americans and it improved the bottom line of American business.

      • 0 avatar
        TomHend

        Tres, noooooooooooooooo never ever buy Canadian miners, lousy business, full of fraud and phony accounting- it’s a mugs game, they have been pummeled in price and guess what? They are going lower still.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      Arthur Dailey – I agree that once one has a family the definition of masculinity shifts to what you describe. It is needed for the stability of family. You have a stable family and everything else stabilizes.
      A “true man” isn’t going to feel less a man if his wife is allowed a say in vehicle choices or any other choice that affects their family.

      In 2008 when the whole financial crisis hit coupled with some pending career changes in my life I ended up with a used 8 passenger Safari van. It packed my dogs, kids, wife etc. as well as dirt bikes and what ever “manly” stuff I could fit into it. It wasn’t cool but it did what it needed to do. Once things look “safe” for me and my family in 2010 we got a new minivan and a new truck.

      Selfish behavior is just that…. selfish and it doesn’t work too well when one has to be responsible for other people.

    • 0 avatar
      Chi-One

      Well said Mr. Dailey, well said! I heartily concur.

  • avatar
    baconator

    You’ve inspired me to drive the Aston Martin to work today.

  • avatar
    FreedMike

    “Nobody’s going to make me own a crossover. Even though I have a child, and a girlfriend, and a house in the suburbs, and a job where they don’t let me wear a tank top to the office. If that makes me a caveman, or a reactionary, or a racist, or whatever other bad words you learned at Hugbox University, so be it.”

    Well, Jack, last I checked no one’s putting a gun to your head and making you buy a CUV. Don’t want one? Don’t buy one.

    Can you please get back to writing stuff that makes sense?

  • avatar
    an innocent man

    I thought the original piece on “High-Low” was silly and overwrought. I think this piece is just as much so. It’s gotta be the meds.

  • avatar
    SWA737

    I have a good friend who traded his 911 for a Lexus shortly after getting married.

    My wife (who drives an RSX TypeS) looked at me and said “If you ever do anything like that, I’m fucking divorcing you.”

    Choose wisely, my friends.

    • 0 avatar

      Thanks for a good laugh! Hang onto that wife.

    • 0 avatar
      Quentin

      Or your friend got tired of the compromises that come along with driving a sports car every day. There are many days when I’m happy to be in the SUV versus the sports car. I don’t always want sporty and engaging after a stressful day at work. I’m fortunate enough to have both, but if I could only have one, id have a hard time picking the sports car.

      • 0 avatar
        hubcap

        There’s a seat for every a$$. Sometimes more than one.

        The part of that comment that wasn’t specified is “why” was the Super Beetle traded for a Lexus? SWA737 kinda implies it was done because that is what was expected for a newly married man to do. But we don’t know for sure.

        Anyway, modern 911s are quite comfortable in ways that an FRS/BRZ isn’t.

        • 0 avatar
          Quentin

          I’m sure the 911 is an order of magnitude more comfortable than an FR-S/BRZ. A lot of my personal daily driver annoyances are based on size, ride, and height which would be common to the 911: being a leap of faith when you back out of a parking spot, dodging every pothole, worrying about scraping wheels on the curb, unable to reach the drive up ATM, having to consciously decide if you will or won’t need to carry more than 1 person that day, being on the end of road rage should you have the nerve to pass a slower moving vehicle on a country road (this is shockingly common… had a Ram lose his mind when I passed him going 40 on a road that I regularly drive 60 without breaking a sweat; he tailgated me at 60mph until my turn-off).

          But yeah, we don’t know for sure. I’m just saying that it isn’t out of the realm of possibility that the friend simply tired of the compromises that go with daily driving such a sporty car.

  • avatar
    Stugots

    I am now having a serious existential crisis. Thanks a bunch.

  • avatar
    ajla

    So what I’m hearing is that I should put the SLP Loudmouth exhaust on my current car and then spend all my money in 24 months on a GSF.

    Also, I own both those Toronado ads.

  • avatar
    Chris Tonn

    Re: Spousal Fear.

    A friend once claimed the only thing keeping my wife from killing me is the size of the hole she’d have to dig in the yard.

    Another friend suggested that she’d make me dig the hole first.

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Hey wait a min… Jack aren’t you the same guy who once opined that your own father taught you: people don’t think of you as much as you think they think of you, or something to that effect?

  • avatar
    Pch101

    Some folks would say that you settled when you bought an Accord.

  • avatar
    Hummer

    Ignoring the topic, which I can agree on, this is written beautifully.

    • 0 avatar
      SaulTigh

      I too enjoy Jack’s writing, though my favorite was something he linked to on a blog/his blog about desperate people in their late 20’s, and I think an Applebee’s was involved, or maybe a Chili’s. Wish I could find it.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        So when you say next door, do you mean Chili’s, or Flingers?

        • 0 avatar
          DeadWeight

          STAN
          Now, it’s up to you whether or not you want to just do the bare
          minimum. Well, like Brian, for example, has 37 pieces of flair. And a
          terrific smile.

          JOANNA
          Ok. Ok, you want me to wear more?

          STAN
          Look. Joanna.

          JOANNA
          Yeah.

          STAN
          People can get a cheeseburger anywhere, ok? They come to Chotchkie’s
          for the atmosphere and the attitude. That’s what the flair’s about.
          It’s about fun.

          JOANNA
          Ok. So, more then?

          STAN
          Look, we want you to express yourself, ok? If you think the bare
          minimum is enough, then ok. But some people choose to wear more and we
          encourage that, ok? You do want to express yourself, don’t you?

          JOANNA
          Yeah. Yeah.

          STAN
          Great. Great. That’s all I ask.

          JOANNA
          Ok.

      • 0 avatar
        Jack Baruth

        http://jackbaruth.com/?p=127

        Enjoy the afternoon :)

        • 0 avatar
          319583076

          Jesus F***ing Christ!

        • 0 avatar
          SaulTigh

          THAT’S the one. Thanks.

        • 0 avatar
          Driver8

          re. p.127

          That is forking gold. Gold, Jerry. Gold.

          I bet the Canadians had to google ‘spit roast’.

        • 0 avatar
          Hummer

          That’s was good!

        • 0 avatar
          Arthur Dailey

          Summing up quite well the decline of Western Civilization.

          Companies advertise because it works. And movies, television, etc are just sophisticated ways to sell products and/or influence people. Cigarettes and the ‘tradition’ of diamond engagement rings are just a couple of examples of how movies were paid to influence consumer tastes.

          The bitter ex-nerds who control much of the media have spent their working lives trying to convince women that they should act the way that these guys fantasized about when they were alone in the shower in their parents bathroom.

          And the Jack Baruth media persona would only acknowledge the kind of intellectually or emotionally challenged female who actually believed the tripe that she was being fed by the media.

          Perhaps media persona Jack is afraid to acknowledge the behaviour of the many real women who attend grad or professional school and who have real careers and lives? And who realize their true worth as humans. Those who work as volunteers with youth, the elderly or animals. Who don’t make fools of themselves at parties. Who value more than the name on their designer clothes. Who actually valued themselves as individuals, even when young.

        • 0 avatar

          OK. Wow. That hit pretty close to home.

          1. A buddy of mine worked out that way back in the old WorldCom days. Lots of ranting over beers in the mid-late 90’s over this type of shit. Also knew a lot of those sad bastards over at Sterling.

          2. Me personally, I was one of those desperate sad-dad commuters you described. I lost my gray-collar job (and nearly my house and marriage) @LabCorp two weeks before Christmas, 2008.

          3. Uhh.. other things.

  • avatar
    Drzhivago138

    My mother has driven CUVs since 2010, because our township never grades the roads. But even if she didn’t need the ground clearance, Dad would still say, “get a CUV.” He drives two full-size pickup trucks, a half-ton V8 and a one-ton V10. His last low-slung car was the ’77 T-bird, which he got rid of in about 1990. Consequently, none of us are comfortable in a sedan seating position. A minivan was once the right vehicle, but is too big now with no children. So compact CUVs are where it’s at. Low- to high-20s MPG is amazing when you’re accustomed to a V8 that gets 14, or a V10 that gets 9.

    At any rate, when it finally comes time to trade in my vehicle, I will now definitely be looking at a CX-5. I just saw a manual one the other day and I decided the dark gray doesn’t look half-bad. Kind of a bluish tint to it. So thank you for bringing up the CX-5 again.

  • avatar
    Mojohand

    My first reaction to this nonsense was ‘A man simply doesn’t give a **** what some ***hole on the internet thinks he ought to riding or driving.’

    But my second was that we should stop for a moment and savor the simple beauty of “The Forester XT is, basically, the STi for men who are afraid of their wives.” [kisses tips of fingers] Magnifique! Troll Force 11!

  • avatar
    thats one fast cat

    Thank you for the good read and a great laugh this morning. All of what you say is true (although with a lot of bombast, but that’s OK as this is supposed to be a site worth reading).

    I guess I will, in fact, have to ride the Ducati 916 to work and hope that it doesn’t impact my career in a negative fashion. Oh wait, I don’t care because I don’t have a f*ck to give. That’s a real man view, right?

  • avatar
    2drsedanman

    I’m thinking about getting a new hemi 6 speed Challenger next year because I want one. I’m still keeping my Sienna because I like it. Not sure where that puts me on the man scale, but fortunately, I don’t give a f*ck what anyone thinks about what I drive. Pretty liberating, really. More people should try it.

  • avatar
    tresmonos

    Beautiful, man. The sooner everyone realizes they are free to do whatever what they want and when, the sooner the divorce rate will decline, personal debt will decrease, and I will no longer have to explain to my future step daughter why other kids are developmentally f*cked.

    Everyone’s individual identity is important. If you repress that, you’ll be put down by CCW holders or police when you finally melt the f*ck down because a shopping cart dented your sh1tty Ford Edge in the Kroger parking lot.

  • avatar
    omer333

    I never figured you for a stoner-doom-metal kind of guy, especially since the scene delights in ALL THE ILLEGAL DRUGS; but if Henry Rollins is a fan and he’s clean as a whistle, then music is a unifying thing.

  • avatar
    S2k Chris

    Two thoughts: A) why do you spend so much time telling us how many girls you try to sleep with, and occasionally succeed? It kinda reeks of desperation and insecurity, and adds nothing to your point.

    B) You ascribe way too much to the car for most people. I’m sure there’s an alternate universe where someone is laughing at me for owning a new French door whirlpool fridge because I could’ve gotten a vintage…something, or because I haven’t rooted my iPhone or because I wear a $300 Ecodrive or buy my shirts off the rack or my socks from Kohls or whatever. Most people don’t care what kind of car they drive, and since the CUV is the sweatpants of the car world, comfy, practical, inexpensive, that’s what they go with. There’s a 50/50 chance my next car somewhere down the road will be some sort of SUV/CUV, because my DD doesn’t need to be exciting as I have a fun 2-seater in the garage. Does owning a “real sports car” and a CUV make me half a man? I settle sometimes? How many strippers do I have to bang to redeem myself?

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      a) If this feels like too much to you, I cannot recommend that you read the Slash autobiography.

      b) I’m not writing to those people, or for those people, am I?

      • 0 avatar
        S2k Chris

        A) In the Slash biography, I know what I’m getting. I’m here to read about cars. But increasingly, I know what I’m getting via byline.

        B) You’re talking to a group made up of people who likely own multiple cars, and the odds are good at least one of those is a CUV. Would you really think less of a man who owned your exact garage (993, Boxster, whatever motorcycles) but his DD was a CRV or Pilot or RDX or Macan instead of an Accord? Really?

        • 0 avatar
          Zykotec

          I own a CR-V, would really love to own an Accord coupe if they were available in Europe, and I kinda think less of Jack because he owns a bunch of beetles, but then the bikes save him XD

          • 0 avatar
            racer-esq.

            Sorry, but single/divorced women in their 40s in Europe are not manly enough for the Accord Coupe, so Honda isn’t going to bother selling it there. You would think that the hairy legs and armpits would be enough, but apparently Honda disagrees.

  • avatar
    dividebytube

    My last car was a used MY04 BMW 325i 5MT that I had originally bought for my wife. When it came time to get rid our other car, a MY01 Accord V6 coupe, we found a used yellow MY03 Mini Cooper S 6MT with low miles. It was too much of a fun car to pass on but I didn’t want to be driving a yellow car all day. So I ended up with her BMW.

    I did some minor work on the BMW, replacing the MAF and lower/upper intake along with the DISA valve. That got rid of the annoying check engine light. But this winter came and I was suddenly dealing with a frozen CCV, which led to plumes of smoke coming of the exhaust. Working on cars when it’s 10-20 degrees out is not my idea of fun and I was getting sick of the nickel ‘n’ dime reliability. Nothing ever went terribly wrong with the car but I just didn’t trust it for long highway trips.

    For a replacement I really had my heart set on a used 335i with a 6 speed, or a leased 228i … but the experience with the 325i left me a bit disenchanted with BMW. And I’m working on fixing up a mid-century house. And I’ve got a 14yo son who is now taller than me (6’2″). And my wife wants to adopt another child.

    So as an interim car I bought one of TTAC’s most hated vehicle – a MY08 Scion XB with an automatic but only 47k miles. It’s not a driver’s car by any stretch of the imagination. It’s sort of a CUV in function but obviously does not have AWD. But it is a good people mover with good backseat room and I’ve already used the increased storage capacity on several occasions. I’ve moved stuff that I could never do with the BMW or the Mini.

    I’ve got my eyes set on a Mustang convertible but that Scion will be kept around for drudgery duties.

  • avatar
    bikegoesbaa

    I’ve observed that people typically “settle” because they have children, and in doing so abandon or compromise the most fun and interesting aspects of their life.

    Conclusion: Do not have children, continue doing fun and interesting things.

    Seems pretty straightforward.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      A woman at work, RE: car choices.

      “I used to drive a van when the kids were little. Driving a van really sucks the fun out of your life.”

      Me: “You sure that wasn’t the kids doing it?”

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      Children are a blessing. I thank God for my son every day.

      The key, I think, is to remember that you are responsible for their happiness and not the other way ’round.

      • 0 avatar
        bikegoesbaa

        I am skeptical of the idea that children are always inherently a desirable thing to have in one’s life.

        Its great that people can have them if that’s what they are into, but it’s a bit of a stretch to declare that they’re a great idea for everybody.

        I think many people wind up with children not due to a considered deliberate choice, but rather due to their own carelessness or buying into the idea that kids are just something you’re supposed to do once you’re a grown-up.

        I’m personally not interested in “settling” for children, and I thank God every day that I’m not a father. Several times a day if I happen to be in an airport and have to opportunity to observe my fellow travelers’ interactions with their precious blessings.

        • 0 avatar
          dal20402

          Father here, and I agree with bikegoesbaa. Having children should be a deeply considered choice and no one should be judged for not making that choice.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I have been very certain for a while that I don’t want children. Not my thing! You’d be surprised at the [archaic] reaction some people still have to that statement, and try to convince me otherwise.

          • 0 avatar
            05lgt

            I would agree that no one who doesn’t want to be a parent should be one. I also agree with Jack, being a parent is the most fun and rewarding activity I’ve ever been involved in.

        • 0 avatar
          Nick 2012

          “I’m personally not interested in “settling” for children, and I thank God every day that I’m not a father. Several times a day if I happen to be in an airport and have to opportunity to observe my fellow travelers’ interactions with their precious blessings.”

          I’m really sorry for you.

          • 0 avatar
            bikegoesbaa

            Why are you sorry for somebody who decided what they want their life to look like and is making the choices to manifest that? Seems like an odd thing to be sorry for.

            I get that we may want different things, but that’s OK. If you decided that you’re happy with kids or whatever then I’m happy you can have what you want.

      • 0 avatar
        heoliverjr

        This thoughtful truth is kinda outta left field in this article and stream of comments. I was figuring either you just wanted to see how crap you could stir up or someone had stolen your computer and was posting under your name.

    • 0 avatar
      SaulTigh

      When my parents married in ’69, my dad had a GTO and a pilot’s license. In ’76 when I came along, he had a ’71 Ford Galaxie and an expired pilot’s license. I don’t blame him much, as I’ve seen pictures of my mother from that era (she hated the GTO because it had a manual transmission).

      He doesn’t seem to miss that car or flying, and in fact spends quite a bit of time babying a ’14 Honda Accord.

      • 0 avatar
        carguy67

        Pilots’ licenses don’t expire (but medical certifications do). Your dad’s ticket is still good if he can pass a third class medical and get a BFR/checkout from a CFI.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      I think the notion of a “mid-life crisis” is misguided; it’s less that someone needs to feel younger and more that they can once again afford the stuff they want now that the kids are finally out of the house.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        The fact that the kids are just out of the house is what causes the mid-life crisis. Their prior identity for the past 20-25 years as “father with responsibilities” has gone away – and it calls into question their existence.

        So a quick spike on the scale happens, irrational purchases are made and new things tried and arguments with spouse occur, then a settling back into a norm which is slightly different than before the crisis, but not by much.

        The reaction the mother has to this is called empty nest syndrome. But of course being a woman, the reaction is less violent and noticeable and tied to shiny objects.

      • 0 avatar
        krhodes1

        My peer group seems to not be having kids until their 40s. That is going to be one elderly mid-life crisis some day. The thought of chasing a toddler around at my age (46) makes me shudder.

        Oddly, the thought of children is less unappealing to me as I grow older. I would have no problem with inheriting some step-kids at this point. Preferably of at least high-school if not out of college age. But no-way no-how do I want any of my own. Little kids are fun for an hour at a time – wind ’em up and giv’em back to their parents. I am a fun uncle.

        Being single, childless, and middle-aged makes for a nice equipe in the garage. You can afford the cars, and you can afford the insurance. Not a CUV to be seen, in my case. Though sad to say, I would be caught dead in a Land Rover Discovery Sport as a 3rd or 4th car. But it can’t tow enough so my wallet is safe, I will stick with my P38 Range Rover – maybe getting a nicer one just like it.

    • 0 avatar
      NoGoYo

      The only upside to my lack of social skills is that I haven’t knocked up anyone. I guess I’ll keep being a loner until I can get a real job!

  • avatar

    I could’ve written similar sentiments about FWD minivans.

    We raised two sons without ever buying one. We DID have two RWD Astro vans over a period of seven years but those are only minivans in the sense that they’re smaller than a full-size Chevy van. Much of that same time, I’d also owned an ’89 Caprice wagon…into which I’d transplanted a 350TPI.

    Never got tired of the “HOLY S*&T” remarks opening the hood for friends and other car people.

    Yes we have a crossover, my wife loves it for the room and visibility. But I don’t consider that “settling”. She’s happy. Plus it’s been a good vehicle, far better than the two Subies that came before.

    And I have an older Tahoe that scratches my current automotive itches. Sure I’d like a Chevrolet SS with a stick. But I can’t afford to make payments on a vehicle I can only drive nine months out of the year.

    Someday I’ll get my ’57 Chevy together with plenty of recent goodies to make it behave like a newer car. Sometimes you have to settle – even a little – to reach our personal, ultimate automotive goal.

  • avatar
    01 Deville

    What started out as a silly debate about car forms has been blown into something deeper about masculinity in a typical provocative Baruth fashion. Some thoughts that come to mind

    Drive whatever you wish- your car does not define you unless you let it do it. Saying this as a committed husband and father of three kids and current owner of 2003 town and country 01 V70 and 00 740il.

    More fundamentally people define masculinity differently. In my possibly quixotic outlook masculinity does entail sacrificing for greater good and not being self obsessed jerk.

  • avatar
    mikey

    Excellent Jack. I read all 500 + comments on the weekend. Actually I found it quite entertaining . I’m 62 years old and I couldn’t agree with you more.

    Life’s circumstances, demanded that I cease trading cars every 18 months or so. { Gee I really enjoyed doing that}.. I also needed to reduce the “fleet” to one.

    Oh, the advice I received. “Mikey ya got to get a Silverado crew cab” . No what ya really want is an Equinox “.”Don’t buy the Acadia, the Traverse is almost the same thing” Like I didn’t know that after 36 years on the plant floor

    I really wanted a nicely optioned 2 dr Coupe…

    “A MUSTANG ! or another CAMARO ! ?? .” My family all shouted… “Mikey/Dad.. your 62 years old . Put your old Mustang in Auto Trader and keep your Impala”.

    Some old work mates, all driving the standard issue “full size GM truck” “Mikey, you worked at GM for 36 years. How could you even look at a Ford” {I thought it might not be a good time to mention that I had also looked at a Honda Accord.} I also asked some of my former co-workers, if they could point out the “UAW” sticker on their Mexican made Silverado. Or for that matter, Honda builds Accords right here in Ontario {I think}

    My 13 year old Grandson, thought the Mustang was a cool idea, me too.

    So I said “f-k ya all…I’ll buy what I want”.

    I love my Mustang

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      This is why I’ve never once in my life asked anyone for advice on buying a car. I know what I want, I don’t need you trying to sell me on your favorite car. I usually can only justify having one vehicle at a time, but they’ve been various based on what I felt like at that particular stage of my life. I’ve gone from:

      – old-ass diesel F-250
      – turbodiesel Ram 4×4
      – (Neon) SRT-4
      – Two Mustang GTs (a 2010, then a 2012)
      – Ranger

      • 0 avatar
        CobraJet

        I probably have the oddest mix of transporation of anyone, but they suit me just fine. All are old with over 100,000 miles each. Don’t have a car note or a house note.

        2002 GMC Safari van (wife’s. It’s all she wants to drive, this is 3rd one)
        1994 Silverado Ext. Cab (bought new. Don’t like the new taller ones)
        2007 Impala LT 3.9 engine (daily driver. Plenty of power)
        1969 Mustang Mach I 428 (Had it almost forever. Drive it anytime I want to smile)

  • avatar
    Blue-S

    Remember: The Forester XT is the WRX for the man who is afraid of his wife. They share the same DIT engine. The STI exists on a higher plane altogether, with its bigger turbo, sturdy 6-speed, limited slip diffs and Brembo brakes.

  • avatar
    Louis XVI

    I’m now fully convinced that “Jack Baruth” is a work of performance art designed to parody a particular conception of masculinity. I refuse to believe that anyone could actually be so tragically insecure as to actually put all of the following into one column to assert his manly credentials:

    “as I unsteadily unbuttoned the blouse of a woman who was a toddler back when I started driving my father’s 733i…”

    “I’m married with no children, I have three Porsches and two Volkswagen Phaetons.”

    “I still did a lot of club racing and binge drinking and Brioni shopping and stripper-banging.”

    “I stopped worrying about whether I was “good enough” for various women and started just sleeping with them.”

    This has to be a joke, right? Nobody could honestly be this insecure and lacking in self-awareness, can they? Because if they were, it would just be too sad for words.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      He’s quite serious. Speaking as someone who has experienced both extremes of life and love, his slightly sociopathic attitude is actually the correct one. If you drift through life playing by society’s rules you’ll get played in the end, its really that simple. You have to be a man and forge your own path the best way you can. You have to constantly push yourself otherwise you’re standing still. Level up b*tchez or get left behind!

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        How many Life XP is it til the next level?

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Check your status bar.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            @CoreyDL, when it happens you’ll know. I’m so much happier and more self-assured at 38 than I was in my 20s. My Brothers-in-Law claim they are happier in their 40s than they’ve ever been.

            My wife and her sisters on the other hand had existential crisis’ when they turned 30…

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Haha, thank you for the genuine reply. I don’t view life as a series of levels, really. Just being a bit sarcastic and relating it to video games.

          • 0 avatar
            JimZ

            ” I’m so much happier and more self-assured at 38 than I was in my 20s.”

            sadly, I seem to be going in the other direction.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @PrincipalDan

            I’m having a similar experience in my own life and yes, between 28 and 30 women start to have their issues.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Millennial women have been -having- issues since around 20. Ha.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            That’s every model year Corey.

          • 0 avatar
            DeadWeight

            ” I’m so much happier and more self-assured at 38 than I was in my 20s.”

            “sadly, I seem to be going in the other direction.”

            ***Deadweight’s Public Service Announcement for February 23rd, 2016***

            In a reversal of long-standing societal trends, men in their 40s are most depressed, and even prone to suicide, in the United States of America (you are all free to discuss the clearly societal/economic reasons why this is now the case):

            “They are all part of a “sandwich generation”: they sit between the baby boomers and the digital natives. And they are a group who have, according to recent statistics, lost their way. The Samaritans Suicide Statistics Report for 2014 shows that men aged 40-44 are the demographic group with the highest rate of suicide, nearly four times that of women the same age; for those aged 45-54, the rate is roughly three times higher for men than women. New data from the Office of National Statistics confirm those findings. And although the statistics aren’t always straightforward (there may be under-reporting of female suicides), things aren’t getting better: while the male rate fell for most of the past decade, since 2012 it has been back on the rise.”

            “In the Samaritans report about the data, Professor Rory O’Connor, then the head of the suicidal behaviour research group at Stirling University, said that the focus had shifted over recent decades from younger men being more at risk of suicide to middle-aged men.”

            “Men currently in their midyears are caught between their traditional silent, strong and austere fathers who went to work and provided for their families, and the more progressive, open and individualistic generation of their sons. They do not know which of these two very different ways of life and masculine culture they should follow.”

            “The pressure to live up to what the report describes as a “masculine ‘gold standard’ which prizes power, control and invincibility” can turn personal troubles such as losing a job into a crisis in a way that it might not for women. The sense of suffering “defeat as a man” can be more acute in middle age, when the responsibilities are greatest.”

            “The result? Men of this generation are in crisis. We often focus on teenage boys and their problems, ranging from depression to delinquency, or on women and their role in society, from young and single to working mother to stay-at-home woman. Yet we rarely look at the role of men, especially middle-aged men – and the problem does not only apply to those who have suffered from the familiar seismic shifts in their lives, such as divorce or the loss of a job.”

            http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/health/why-do-so-many-middle-aged-men-feel-so-lost/

      • 0 avatar
        Piston Slap Yo Mama

        28-Cars: yes, and yes.
        I fully endorse his philosophy of taking the path less traveled and living large, even if it might be a bit embellished by the time he puts ink to paper. Some people get butt-hurt when their milquetoast decisions are questioned, be it the decision to buy a CUV, vacation in Disney World or settle for a demeaning marriage. A TTAC commentator reflecting this zeitgeist took great offense at my disdain for the “me-too” man who studiously emulates everyone and appointed himself the hammer for nails that dare to stick up. My response: “you shouldn’t take it personally that I don’t want to be you: 40 payments left on a Kia Sorento, love Nickelback and trapped in a loveless marriage” which was my take on Baruth’s article to begin with.
        I suspect the chorus of opprobrium against Baruth stems from either jealousy or impotence or both. I’ve learned to not take him too seriously and just enjoy his prose.

        • 0 avatar
          Drzhivago138

          What if somebody buys a crossover because it’s desirable to them?

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Drzhivago138

            “What if I took that easy contempt that I feel for crossover-driving single men and pointed that high-powered perception on myself, so to speak? When did I settle, and why did I do it?’

            “crossover-driving single men”

            Jack must be getting soft………. now the ire is directed at/to single men.

            Hard to argue with that, I’d have NEVER considered a cross-over when single……….

            but then again, when I was single all I ever considered were motorcycles and pickups.

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            I’ve had balance issues since I was 4 thanks to the cholesteatoma (cyst) that left me deaf in my left ear, so motorcycles are right out. I’d love a pickup; in fact, I’m almost expected to have one, but even at $1.49, the gas bill would kill me.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          Nice post, Piston Slap Yo Mama.

          “appointed himself the hammer for nails that dare to stick up.”

          That’s gold Jerry, gold!

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      This stuff’s fun to write.

      If it’s not fun for you to read, you don’t have to read it.

      Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to wheelie my motorcycle down the street in front of my job in order to offend some fine-looking broads.

      • 0 avatar
        Louis XVI

        I’m glad you’re enjoying yourself. I’m not offended, more…perplexed. Why would somebody so self-assured and satisfied still feel compelled to so loudly proclaim his accomplishments across the internet? I’d think you wouldn’t have to broadcast your need to for approval quite so plaintively, but hey, if it makes you happy, that’s cool.

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          I’ll take “this is my opinion about things and stuff” over the “I’M RIGHT ABOUT EVERYTHING I HAVE A BLOG AND YOU NEED TO SHUT UP AND LISTEN TO ME NOW!” crap that gets published on Gawker.

        • 0 avatar
          tresmonos

          He does it because it generates revenue, which in turn puts money in his pocket. I’m sure he also enjoys the fact that his stories ping on his readers’ emotions – the fact that he gets most of us (his target demographic) to look back on our life and identify certain scenarios where we inevitably have conformed to some societal pressure. If the results of these varying situations were satisfactory, no one would be reading this. The same could be said for the times where we insisted on our individuality and rewarded ourselves for that and saw the fruits of said circumstances.

      • 0 avatar
        mikey

        “If it’s not fun to read, you don’t have to read it”

        Exactly ! That’s why I came here, and that’s why I stay

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          “If it’s not fun to read, you don’t have to read it”

          Exactly ! That’s why I came here, and that’s why I stay

          Ditto…..

          One other point, the discussions triggered by the story are often better than the story itself.

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            “the discussions triggered by the story are often better than the story itself.”

            This is true, and I would also add that at least 1/4 of the comments on any story with 150+ comments are completely off-topic. And that’s okay.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Drzhivago138 – the off topic stuff is wonderful. Life is like that, you find a new road and do you drive past or turn in?

            Taking that turn is way more fun and fulfilling.

      • 0 avatar
        pbr

        Nailed it.

      • 0 avatar
        fvfvsix

        I’m not gonna lie. Any dude who manages to use the words “broad” and/or “toots” in a conversation in 2016 gets a couple of extra points in my book. Well done ;)

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      I don’t think so. I’ve read enough of Jack’s stuff where I figure I’m running about a 70/30 agree/disagree ratio with him. Which is fine by me, if I wanted an echo chamber I’d be elsewhere.

    • 0 avatar
      heoliverjr

      I shake my head at both the article and the people who take it %100 percent seriously. All these various comments are making for a great time killer, so it works out for me!

  • avatar
    Zykotec

    I really hate agreeing with you, partially because in my current state I’m jealous enough to call you immature on the intenet, in writing, so that other people can read it. On the other hand, you sure are, but that’s just because the defintion of immature is more or less ‘not being boring’, and is something women, and the men who follow them have decided is the truth.
    But I don’t have to agree with everything you write. (Fury Road is still awesome)
    Crossovers do exist for other reasons than men being afraid of their wives. There are actually a whole bunch of reasons to buy a CR-V, but more or less none of those reasons apply to an auto enthusiast.
    Us car guys often forget that most other people don’t care about cars. They may care that it has a status or brand, or that it has even panel lines and LED headlights, but they don’t care how fast it is if it can follow the traffic, or how it handles , unless it’s directly life-treatening.
    It (sadly) no longer has anything to do with being ‘a man’ or not. Actually, a lot of places car guys are considered some sort of redneck nerd, and unless you match your car enthusiasm with overcomplicated gadgets that cost an arm and a leg and has no purpose at all for a ‘real’ man, you will left out of most conversations. Having seen all episodes of all series, and played all new games means you have enough spare time to be an interesting enough person to talk to, and your intellectual and cultural ‘reference game’ is most certainly more important than knowtin what is the worlds most powerful sedan (at the moment) and how many speeds your transmission has. Most poeple in the US (and more and more people over here in Europe) will probaby think you are a weirdo (or just poor) for rowing your own gears.
    Crossovers are ‘convenient’ in the broadest sense of the word. I’m certainly not going to give up my ‘man card’ for owning a crossover, but mine is 13 years old, has a manual, and will be lowered like the one we totalled two years ago. And here in Europe the choices are a lot worse than in the US , ‘proper’ 5 seaters with a rear hatch are rare today and minivans over here really really s*ck
    Do I have feelings for it? Nah, it’s better looking than all the other CUV’s, but it’s hardly good looking.
    Is it convenient and practical? Yes, very much so.
    Would owning two cars be better? Maybe, but that presents a whole lot of other challenges, some of which are economical, and I allready have another non-running car that I have feelings for, and limited space…And having more than one car to choose from but not enough child-seats for both usually means picking the one with the child seats in anyway…
    Do I let my SO choose my cars for me? She surely has a word in every economical decision we make, and her ADD is a lot less severe than mine, so she knows that whatever I’m interested in right now is not what I will be interested in next week, so she helps me save my money for something I really really want, whenever that may show up.
    Do I care enough about new cars (anything built since 1978) that I could care if there is a difference between a Panamera, a Charger, a CR-V or a Golf GTI ? Nah, none of them are particulary interesting tbh… I don’t think I can have any serious feelings for any brand new car.
    Actually, anyone who has not built their own Hot Rod yey have the right to call themselves a man (including myself) although I’m gonna give myself a few ‘man-points’ for painting flames on two of my cars (so far)
    Should we even be allowed to call people ‘men’ if they have never worked on their cars?

  • avatar
    Featherston

    The facelift inflicted on the first-gen Toronado makes me sad, especially when a vinyl top is thrown into the mix, but the Capstick reference made me laugh.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      The call of brougham was too strong for the simple elegance of original Toronado styling. It needed front end gimmick.

      • 0 avatar
        gottacook

        It wasn’t “gimmick” so much as a brief fling that both GM and Chrysler undertook with the one-piece “bumper/grille”; the Riviera also got one for ’68. The peak year for bumper/grille production was probably ’69: three different Pontiacs (full-size, intermediate, and Firebird), plus the full-size Chevy, Buick, and Chrysler, as well as the aforementioned Toro and Riv. Some of these dropped the bumper/grille for ’70 but others took it up (full-size Plymouth, Dodge Charger, etc.).

      • 0 avatar
        NoGoYo

        At least the 71 Toronado fixed everything by copying the Eldorado. Sure it was less interesting, but it worked better than any of the facelifts to the original Toro did…

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      How HERE’s a great comment on “The Truth About Cars” – it actually describes a car!

      Bravo, sir!

      Post of the day on this thread!

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    Thank you for this Jack, seriously.

    Be cheerful while you are alive… because life is too fucking short.

  • avatar
    Frank Galvin

    Six years ago, 6 mon. old Galvin Jr. had an epic meltdown on the Mass Turnpike during a 20 mile traffic backup in the backseat of our Astra. We pulled into a rest stop an hour later at the same time and parked next to a fully spec’d out Odyssey Touring. Looking at leather interior, the fold down DVD players, Ms. Galvin looked at me and said that if she had a minivan, she would not question whatever I choose to drive. I quickly rattled off my favorites – to which she responded “What part of whatever did you not understand.” The Sedona came not long after. Soon after I had a 130 mile daily commute over highways and backroads, and in a moment of weakness, I pondered a Prius for a DD. She looked at me and said no, that I’d lose part of my soul. We’ll be moving soon and I’ll be back to driving to work. She cares not that I may pick up a Miata, a Mustang, or whatever strikes my fancy. As long as there is a kiddie hauler in the driveway for our boybarians, I’ll have a happy wife. I compromised on the Sedona, and will gladly compromise on its replacement, for in compromising, I get what I need without having to settle. My grandfather, of the greatest generation, had four kids. There was always a station wagon; but also Studebaker Hawks, Austin Healeys and an Olds 442. My mother ditched her wagon in 1990 with 3 kids; 12, 9, and 4. Her next three cars were all coupes. Apple and all that. Stay gold Jack.

  • avatar
    Zackman

    Settle? Everyone settles for something one way or the other, whether due to finances, health, family or whatever,

    Fantasies are just that – fantasies.

    As to cars – yes – I’d love my old 1964 Impala SS convertible back that I sold when leaving the USAF in 1973, but that ain’t gonna happen – ever. I’d love a new Camaro convertible – in yellow – but more than likely that’s not gonna happen, either.

    Why? In the case of my Camaro-love, I retire in a year and my finances will be limited. If I could somehow get my hands on one, I’m not certain it would be wise with my restricted vision (but I’d like to find out!), so here I am – I will be driving my 2012 Impala until the wheels fall off.

    BTW – I did not settle for my 2012 Impala – I strived for one and bought mine new at just the right time and I still love it, much to the probable chagrin to “enthusiasts” on here! So I am driving what I really wanted. Same as Wifey, who aspired for her 2002 CR-V, which we also bought new, and she loves it to this day!

    I don’t settle for cheap fedoras, either. I love my Stetson Sovereigns!

    Frank Sinatra may have lived life “His Way”, but what a trail of trash he left behind…

    One more thing: As far as baby-boomer parents being called the “greatest generation”, that’s a load of bunk – the “unfortunate generation” would more accurately describe what they went through. If you sort through what the media has written and peel back the facts, you’ll be glad you weren’t a part of it.

  • avatar
    Nick 2012

    “Because you’re marrying a lovely woman who spent the years from 2003 to 2007 waking up every weekend morning face-down in the rec room of the Sigma Chi house and who is now taking out all her aggression on you just because you’re so pathetically grateful not to be alone that you don’t bite back.”

    This made me chortle because I know those women and the men who marry them. Those same people also establish Go Fund Me pages seeking donations for the $6k in dog physical therapy because they have no idea what it is like to actually have another human depend on you.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    As the B&B’s resident Forester XT owner, I know when I’m being trolled. And Jack did so expertly.

    But the truth is: for the specific purposes for which my family uses the Fozzy, the STI would be the settling car. We’d be trading mild off-road ability, all-day ride comfort, easy kid loading, and cargo space for a stick shift (which admittedly would be really nice) and a performance edge that’s strictly theoretical in any driving conditions we see 355 days out of the year.

    And I’m pretty much done with performance cars anyway unless I develop a track hobby. My two other cars are both luxury sleds, one new, one old.

  • avatar
    tjh8402

    There is settling and there is settling. I sold my beloved but ouf warranty 21 mpg on premium e46 zhp and settled for a under warranty forever 30 mpg on regular Fiat 500 Abarth. I didn’t want to, but a house $40k more than I wanted to spend and a boyfriend that lives 150 miles away meant adulthood was calling and demanding a degree of responsibility. If a Prius would’ve been necessary to balance the budget in my favor to afford the house and the travel bill to see the boyfriend, I would’ve done it. Would’ve hated to do it, but would’ve done it. I’m 32, I’m still young. I can buy another fun car later if I have to. My dad settled for driving the same Honda Civic for 13 years and 230k miles despite being ultimately promoted to a Battalion Chief in the Fire Dept and his subordinates all having much nicer vehicles. Then again, he had two kids in private school about to start college, and for him, paying their bills meant settling and a paid off perfectly reliable high mpg Civic was going no where. As I recall Jack, you did “settle” for not having another Town Car because of how poorly yours fared in the accident.

    On the other hand, there’s buying the more expensive less mpg HR-V because a Fit is just a cheap car and even though she won’t admit it and will come up with every other possible reason why, your wife won’t have her husband driving that, nor does she want to have to be seen getting out of the passenger seat of it.

    • 0 avatar
      tjh8402

      I should add that before I bought the Abarth (it was an opportunity purchase because I got a good deal on a used one), the Prius was a lead candidate for replacing the BMW. Not because I liked it, but because I didn’t really like anything I was looking at, and I figured if I was going to drive something I found uninspiring, it might as well have been the most reliable, highest mpg, and most spacious vehicle I could buy. My friends would’ve busted my balls and given me unending grief for owning a Prius, but whatever. The Prius is my default recommendation for most people who aren’t car people these days, which surprises a lot of people. If I can’t afford to have fun while I’m driving (or you don’t care about it), might as well save $ on the car and spend it on having fun elsewhere. I don’t see a Rav 4 as being any more desirable to drive or own than a Prius (and yes I’ve spent a lot of time in rental Prii), so unless a person’s choice is something more inspiring, just get the Prius (or maybe a C-max).

      • 0 avatar
        hubcap

        The Abarth, while no e46 ZHP, is a fun car in its own right. You could’ve done worse.

        • 0 avatar
          tjh8402

          @hubcap – agreed, and I very nearly did. Before the Abarth, I showed up at a Ford dealer ready to put down a deposit and have a Fiesta 1.0EB shipped in from one of their other locations only to find the car had sold. Although not an Abarth, would’ve been a helluva buy – $11k CPO with less than 10k miles. Had this particular Abarth not come up, I was leaning heavily towards either a Fit (a Honda dealer was offering me a brand new one for $15k out the door), or, if I didn’t find the Fit to be fun enough to drive, swallowing my enthusiast pride and going for the Prius or a C-Max. Luckily for me, a used Abarth optioned exactly the way I wanted (black, sat radio, heated seats, no sunroof) popped up at the local Fiat dealer and I got them down to the price I wanted ($15k for a 2 year old 24k model).

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      @tjh8402 – agree. There is a big difference between “settling” upon the best option for one’s chosen circumstance and settling upon the lowest common denominator because you have given up or are trapped.

      I’d settle for any penalty box on wheels if it means my family has a better future.

      Your dad sounds like a real stand up dude.

      • 0 avatar
        tjh8402

        @Lou_BC – yup he is. He did eventually get himself a BMW 328 convertible to drive as a weekend car. I said if anyone legitimately earned the right to own a BMW, it was him.

  • avatar
    BalmyRodLincoln

    I appreciate that this piece is not an apology. Your previous article did not warrant one. When all of the color of pointed opinions and backwards remarks are gone from auto journalism, what we’re left with is the doltish, manufactured controversy of articles like “Why the Hell Would You Buy a Miata, When You Could Have This V12 Mercedes Way Cheaper?”

    A crossover by its very nature is a comprise of all. A good representation of many different ideas, but at the same time a failure of each individually. It can be neither masculine, nor feminine, however you choose to assign those roles. It is the perfect appliance for those who would view an obvious blanket statement on gender (that used to self-qualify as such to rational people) as “problematic” or “triggering”. I’m happy to accept the fluidity of gender roles, to give my niece as many matchbox cars as I do my son. That doesn’t mean I need to take personal offense on the 1 day a writer that I praise 364 days out of the year for having bold opinions that probably offend someone out there, finally turns his pen towards one of my own personal beliefs.

    Thank you for your contributions, Jack. I look forward to your continued insight: right, wrong, but never indifferent.

  • avatar

    Oh Jack

    First as said before your divorced middle age man, this pretty much means your view of the sexes is irrelevant your just a grumpy old ba%stard.

    You hung out in the dessert with a bunch of girls instead of going to your sons party hmmmm your a dick that’s about all we can say about that.

    You ignore that people are strange and don’t like the same things as you. I knew a single commercial fisherman who drove an escape whey he liked it go figure. I looked at XT’s when I was single I would have bought one over an STI because I haul stuff and I don’t need the increased handling (I really don’t care much).

    In the end it really comes down to (and I like your writing) your incredibly self indulgent and immature you have decided to defend these life choices by attacking other peoples life choices. So again dick.

    • 0 avatar

      COMMENT OF THE CENTURY

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      I just want to thank you for not writing

      ur divorced middle aged man

      I know that it must have hurt your heart to type out the whole “your”.

      And I also want to thank you for stopping short of using the correct “you’re”. It would have beggared belief, like if Gatsby had cut the pages of his books.

      • 0 avatar

        ur welcome

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        The Great Gatsby is among the greatest American Novels of all time (IMO).

        But why can’t they manage to make a film based on it that isn’t warmed over a$$?

        There Will Be Blood is among the top 10 films of all time (IMO), and that was based on a mediocre novel, Oil! (IMO), so wtftf?!!!

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          DiCaprio as Gatsby – that movie was the biggest overblown mess I’ve ever seen in my life. And that’s not to mention the RAP MUSIC they used instead of actual music from the time period, or even some modern jazz.

          I don’t EVER wanna see Jay Gatsby dancing to Jay-Z. That ain’t cool.

          And overall, the novel was just so subtle in execution that going the opposite direction with a movie (I won’t call this crap a film) for the “young crowd” just doesn’t work at all.

          Makes the Redford version look like a 5-star classic, and it wasn’t.

        • 0 avatar
          Drzhivago138

          The ’70s version looked nice, but it had all excitement of a funeral service.

  • avatar
    MrGreenMan

    My dad purchased a Toronado from the dealer over in the next county one extremely bad Michigan winter when his Cutlass Supreme just would not take the weather and he decided that the wife and two little kids needed a safer ride.

    He bought one of the two cars they had for sale. The other car had a plow attachment on it, and the dealer was using it to clear the driveway. It was a dark green that still looked beautiful when parked out by the road, rust having claimed its guts a decade later.

    On the test drive, the salesman had him run that baby down into the ditch over and over again to demonstrate how the big V8 in FWD would charge through and get back on the road. That was no nose-heavy Cutlass, losing it and flipping – this was a TORONADO.

    I remember “The Green Mo-chine” and thousands of childhood rides in the back seat where there was no transmission hump.

    I learned to drive in a Toronado Trofeo. Once you went Toronado, it took GM killing Oldsmobile to get you out of one.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      Well in fairness, the Toronado died 12 full years before Olds went away. Your only option was to pony up for an Eldorado or Riviera (couple years), or step down to the awful Monte.

      • 0 avatar
        Drzhivago138

        The first-gen Aurora was essentially a four-door version of what the fifth-gen Toronado would’ve/could’ve/should’ve been.

        • 0 avatar
          MrGreenMan

          This is the view we took and pretended it was a Toronado – FWD Olds V8.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          On that front, there should have been an Aurora coupe called Toronado.

          OR

          One based on the Riviera platform. Or Monte Carlo.

          OR

          Call the Aurora the Ninety-Eight. But I get they were trying to young it up, and the PLC era was long gone. And the last Ninety-Eight was awkward.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I think the Olds phaseout was planned as recently as the early 90s.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            I’d be pickin up what you’re throwin down – except for the Aurora part. Why spend ALL that money on a new model that way? Why not call it a Buick instead? Could have easily been a new Regal, with the Century continuing as lower model.

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            Hey, I like the last-gen Ninety-Eight. It wore its short WB a lot better than the ’85 model. Skirted wheels FTW.

            The ’95 Riviera and ’97 Park Avenue were already on the same FWD G-platform (113.8″ WB) as the Aurora.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            I don’t fully understand GM’s organizational dysfunction in the 1980s but I do know as recently as 1987 Oldsmobile had developed and released its own (and last) engine, the Twin Cam which became the Quad-4. So since we know model development is about five years development time, the Aurora project was probably conceived no earlier than 1989 and possibly even sooner. I argue sometime between say 1987 and 1992, Oldsmobile was decided to be shut down over time and any projects already in development would be seen through to completion. I think this wasn’t a formal board endorsed decision but more middle managers who saw the writing on the wall and began putting things in place for a phaseout. If GM’s high command wanted to keep the brand they could have merged it into the then new BPG channel or merged it into Chevrolet’s dealer network in the early to mid 90s. They did neither, because Oldsmobile historically had been a strong brand many of its dealers were standalones OR were part of large dealer networks which may or may not have already had other GM channels. GM could fold the brand, screw the indys, and offer the larger dealers some other kind of incentives if it chose too.

            “The Twin Cam was the last engine that was engineered and produced solely by Oldsmobile”

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quad_4_engine

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Very interesting.

            @Dr. What I wanted was for the 98 to be on the B-body with the other triplets. The wagon-only decision was odd, and the 98 going FWD was a mis-step. They kept the boaty big styling, but tried to cram it on a much smaller car.

            I wasn’t thinking the Aurora was so shared between the other cars. But clearly G was quite the flexible platform.

            @28 I am really surprised we don’t have a GM insider from this time period around here to comment. That would be nice!

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            @Corey

            We used too and I learned from him (Doc Olds) but he was a tad biased at times. If I had to guess, as an engineer he wasn’t someone or could have confirmed or denied my hypothesis.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Oh I do recall seeing his name here and there, that was quite a long time ago. Given it was 25-30 years ago, assuming these guys were already well into career age at the time – they’re likely dying off now.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Geez I hope not, its not like the guy started there in the 1950s and would be 80yo+ today.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Haha, it’s conceivable that engineers in good-ol-boy days at GM could be in their mid-late 50’s by the time they get to that level.

            Putting them at 80 today.

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            According to GM chairman Robert Stempel, the ’91+ B-body sedans and wagons had been produced “over [his] dead body.” So once the Ninety-Eight and Electra (which was intended to be the top-of-the-line model since the Roadmaster wasn’t supposed to be made) went FWD in ’85, there was no going back.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Now we know who to blame! Did he not consider the police/livery use success they were possibly going to have?!

            I mean what, police gon’ use an Intrepid? Or after they were a year old “I R E P D”

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            According to some sources, the Lumina would’ve been Chevy’s biggest car. Remember, when the W platform was being developed in the mid-’80s, gas was expected to be $3.50 or more by the end of the decade.

            And FWD was the way of the future…the way of the future…the way of the future…the way of the future…

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Size wise, the Lumina continually got smaller as well, on account of rust and paint loss.

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            Zing! I’ve seen one first-gen Lumina with no rust, and maybe two second-gens (also counting the 5th gen Monte) with all their paint.

            I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: The Lumina should’ve continued when the W-platform was lengthened to 110.5″ WB to make a “full-size” car. Then the Impala name should’ve been reserved for a 2nd gen G platform (Bonneville, Aurora, LeSabre, Seville) model on a truly full-size 112.2″ WB.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Look at you with your good ideas there. The gen 2 Lumina looked awkward to me eyes. The front was like “Okay, well it’s sorta still a Corsica.” and the back said “Hey wat about these giant lamps – aero.”

          • 0 avatar
            dal20402

            The first rule of G-Body and the predecessor H-Body was that they could not be used for Chevrolet. Or the universe would have imploded. Or something. (Or maybe Buick just could not have charged an arm and a leg for Park Avenue Ultras.)

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            I maintain that the only reason the Caprice didn’t also abandon the RWD B-body for the FWD H-body in 1986 was because of the police/fleet market.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      Yea, I consider the Toronado to be one of the best things GM ever did from’66-’92.

  • avatar
    Luke

    “Eventually I came to realize which restrictions and rules in my life were real and which were self-imposed bullshit.”

    As a person struggling to get away from several years of unhappiness and general life dissatisfaction I appreciated this statement very much. Maybe it’s an oldest child thing, or maybe it’s a male thing, or maybe I don’t really know but I certainly sabotaged myself greatly in the past by defining obligations and expectations that no one else in the world had for me. And yet I wondered why my perception of “doing the right thing” and “being a grown up” made me feel so lonely and unsatisfied.

    No one deserves to be unhappy and no one should settle for anything less than they want or need when it comes to the most basic and fundamental things we need in life to feel human. For me those things are my relationship with my family, my relationship with the woman I chose to share my life with, my spirituality, and my mental and physical health. If I’m taking care of those things I feel good and alive and satisfied. To me they are all that really matters, and sometimes I feel ashamed at how long it took me to figure it out in such clear terms.

    That said, everyone has a different list. What one chooses to drive might be on it or it might not be. So Jack, I guess I totally agree with your basic premise of grasping one’s masculinity, figuring one’s self out, not giving up, not settling, and working like hell to find the happiness and satisfaction that we all deserve. But for me, a cool car is icing on the cake.

  • avatar
    ccd1

    The first time my wife found out that I have sold my Mazda and purchased an Audi TT RS, was when I picked her up at the train station in the TT. It was a quiet ride home, which considering the alternative, was probably the best I could hope for. We tend to name our cars with a name beginning with the letter “B”. My TT did not get a name starting with “B” because, as far as my wife is concerned, the car is not part of the family.

    That was almost 2 years ago. She still avoids riding in the car whenever she can and is frustrated that everyone seems to like the car. The silver lining is that her avoidance of the car means that we drive her CUV most places, which keeps the mileage on my car around 6,000 miles a year. I had hopes that my TT could be our weekend getaway car, but those hopes have long since been dashed. On the other hand, should I get rid of the TT, I feel no obligation to take her into account at all should I replace my car.

    Top choice? The Lotus Evora 400 Roadster with the manual. Not here yet, but on the way later this year (or so Lotus claims). Other candidates would be the Aston Martin Vantage V12 (manual) or the Ferrari F430 (manual). All of these cars would earn me the silent treatment and few nights on the couch. But I’ve found the couch ain’t such a bad place when you get the car you really want in return.

    • 0 avatar
      Stumpaster

      This is depressing.

    • 0 avatar
      S2k Chris

      “as far as my wife is concerned, the car is not part of the family.”

      I bought my S2000 5 months before I married my wife. She knew I was doing it but was convinced I wouldn’t go through with it. She was somewhat mad, but mostly got over it. We had wedding pictures taken with the car. We’ve taken some road trips in the car. My daughter loves it and I snuck it to her 3-year photo shoot and had the photographer take some bonus pictures at the end of her and I in the car which turned out to be some of our favorites. Now when I talk about replacing it with a different sports car, she tells me, you can never sell it, it’s part of the family!

      • 0 avatar
        ccd1

        A little more of the story. My wife was looking for a vehicle to replace our 4Runner. I told her to get “whatever she wanted.” That is marriage code for “you get what you want and I will do the same.” She got a new Hyundai CUV, threw my Mazda6 out of the garage and proceeded to treat the Hyundai like it was a garage queen. I went out and showed her what a garage queen looks like and the Hyundia became the daily driver it should always have been. The TT is in the garage and the Hyundai is outside. All is as it should be! lol!

        BTW, you have one of the greats in the S2000.

        • 0 avatar
          Chan

          Thanks for sharing! It’s hilarious to see what people’s wives think of their impractical cars. Let us know what you end up with next–those manual F430s are selling at insane prices now.

          Besides, the couch banishment is only temporary.

    • 0 avatar
      SilverCoupe

      Huh, my wife loved our TT, which we kept for a decade. She insisted on driving it home from the dealer, as she did not like driving my Supra Turbo. Me, frankly I preferred the Supra, though the TT always drew its share of complements. The TT always was garaged, but my wife cracked the front splitter when putting in the garage that first day. And yet we stayed married!

    • 0 avatar
      tjh8402

      @ccd1 – “On the other hand, should I get rid of the TT, I feel no obligation to take her into account at all should I replace my car.

      Top choice? The Lotus Evora 400 Roadster with the manual. Not here yet, but on the way later this year (or so Lotus claims). Other candidates would be the Aston Martin Vantage V12 (manual) or the Ferrari F430 (manual). All of these cars would earn me the silent treatment and few nights on the couch. But I’ve found the couch ain’t such a bad place when you get the car you really want in return.”

      you sir, are my hero. When I was shopping for what ultimately became my BMW, I had several dealers try to get me to budge from my “stick shift only” position whenever they didn’t have one in stock. A popular phrase was “what if your girlfriend can’t drive stick?”. My answer was always if she can’t drive stick, she doesn’t deserve to drive my car. I’m the one that has to live and drive in this, so I buy what I want. If she doesn’t like it, she can drive her car.

      As it turns out, although he can drive stick, my boyfriend refuses to drive my car (although he’ll ride in it). He says he would feel self conscious and judged driving it in front of me knowing how much I like it and that I’m a car guy. I was resolutely opposed to his car purchase too – a Nissan Altima which I can’t stand, but whatever, he’s happy and it saves him a lot of $ his previous car, a Mazdaspeed3.

    • 0 avatar
      Chan

      My wife teasingly calls my F355 Berlinetta “The Mistress,” because of how much time and research it takes to restore it on a non-trust-fund budget. But the fact that she teases me about it means she grudgingly accepts it despite not understanding all of the car’s strengths and weaknesses.

      What nobody can believe is that I bought it three months after we had our first child, when nobody has time for anything. I had meant to buy it before the birth, but researching and finding the right car took some delays.

  • avatar
    Stumpaster

    Dear Jack,

    You are the guiding light for my dilemma. For the last 8 years I’ve been driving a Volvo 240 on the weekends only because I use bicycle to get to the train station during the week. But I bought it so that I could tow my beach cat. Which I bought when we didn’t have a car. Because at that time we used zipcar after having returned out leased Mercedes. But now I am building a bigger boat that will need min 3500 lbs towing capacity. But the 5 year old kid tells me to not sell the Volvo because he wants to drive it with me to South America. Because he watched too many travel shows. And because the Volvo is not as fail-proof as the interwebs make it out to be. The only new vehicles that appeal to me are Durango and GLK. I never owned a car with more than 4 cylinders. I don’t believe a 2.0 turbo can really tow 3500+ lbs through a 8-speed ZF tranny. What should I do?

    Distressed and manly in the North East,
    Y.T.

    • 0 avatar
      Sigivald

      Get the Durango unless you really like having a star on the hood.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      Durango R/T.

      They are genuinely nice vehicles.

    • 0 avatar
      George B

      I’ve seen lots of Durango’s here in Plano, TX lately. I think they look at home in all neighborhoods from working class through country club. Conservative styling, nice interior, and good towing capability without being too large to easily park.

    • 0 avatar
      Nick 2012

      The exhaust note on the Durango R/T is something special.

    • 0 avatar

      Durango Limited review coming soon!

      • 0 avatar
        DeadWeight

        Spoiler Alert – It’s the best vehicle in its segment, especially with captain chairs in the second row and in the $36k to $44k MSRP trim’d level (once you get into the high 40s or 50s you’re losing one of its compelling features, to wit, value), and it’s highly competitive even at the higher price point spec trims even if the value equation begins to wane.

        The Durango is more solid (extremely solid, rigid chassis), refined in terms of suspension and transmission behavior, quiet, spacious, powerful (especially with the V8, and shockingly fuel-efficient with the Pentastar V6 coupled with the 8 speed), comfortable and capable (all-weather roadability and towing ability with receiver, trans cooler, etc.) than any vehicle in the 36k to 44k price range, by far, and competitive even at higher equipped levels that push the price closer to 50k, than many segment competitors that cost well both of 50k and even 60k.

        It’s my 2014, 2015 and 2016 SUV of the Year (DSUVOTY).

  • avatar
    turf3

    Damn boy, why didn’t you just enlist in the Marines?

    Interestingly enough, the guys I have known who saw real combat (WWII, Korea, Vietnam) seem not to have needed to keep demonstrating to all and sundry what bad-asses they were.

    There’s also an old phrase:

    “The ones who talk about it the most are doing it the least.”

    Maybe it’s time to give it a rest. No one else actually cares about your orgy fantasies.

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      “Damn boy, why didn’t you just enlist in the Marines? ”

      Who says I didn’t?

    • 0 avatar
      kvndoom

      Screwing a bunch of women is a fantasy? Who wouldn’t want to? In some senses the whole relationship / marriage thing is its own form of settling.

      If having dozens of partners in your lifetime or multiple partners simultaneously is what brings a man happiness, he should pursue that which makes him happy. Laboring through decades of soul-draining marriage isn’t for everybody. But men who are happy with that, more power to them. There’s no shortage in the world of leeches with vaginas.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        “Screwing a bunch of women is a fantasy? Who wouldn’t want to?”

        I can’t speak for your experiences but in mine you do it, you enjoy it, but then it gets old and you want something more permeable. But of course, this is next to impossible so eventually you’re back to where you started, or somewhere in between.

      • 0 avatar
        dal20402

        Marriage can be soul-draining, or it can be soul-affirming. Choose your partner wisely.

        I was with a girl who drained my soul for ten years. She looked like a 7/8 scale supermodel, we had tons of interests in common, she let me do my own thing (up to and including hanging out with other girls) and 80 percent of the time she was sweet to me. But I couldn’t pull the trigger and it was because of the way she treated me the other 20 percent of the time. In hindsight I shouldn’t have given her as many second and third chances.

        I realized there were problems much quicker with each of the girls after that. But when I met my wife it was a different experience. Being with her made me feel good, even outside the sack — how novel is that? I suspected I wanted to marry her on the second date and knew it by two months in. We’ve been together for about six years, and there’s no way I’d leave even for an orgy that eclipses anything that’s ever occurred to Jack.

  • avatar
    javafiend

    Jack speaks the truth, just recently unplugged myself (still angry with myself I waited so long-I am 43). Had to replace my aging 06 trailblazer recently and picked up a used 2013 honda accord, (auto sedan…i know not exactly a sports car but a lot better than the kia soul she wanted me to get). On the way to the next province over to look at it my phone was ringing off the hook “you better not buy that without me there”, “just look okay do not buy”, “cant we get something cheaper?”. Well the deal was too good to pass and I signed the paperwork. Texted the wife back “I pick it up on Monday”. Got home 3 hours later: “Can I drive it back” “Ooh I like that color”. SMH

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      You demonstrated these principles in action, well done.

    • 0 avatar
      fvfvsix

      Haha! My wife doesn’t even want to be part of the car buying process. i usually make sure she’s involved when it comes time to buy any vehicle she’s likely to drive – but as long as there’ s a Cooper in the garage, she really doesn’t care what the other 2 or 3 cars are. Love that woman.

  • avatar
    Sigivald

    “Nobody can make you drive a crossover, either. They’re compromised vehicles, and you don’t need to compromise. Go get the car you want. Even if you can easily imagine a scenario that could possibly take place where you might theoretically use a crossover one day a year. It’s okay. It will work out. You’ll find a way to not need a gutless 4000-pound wimp-wagon that gets 20 mpg despite being unable to make it up a hill in fourth gear.”

    Fair, for lots of people, and especially for Jack Baruth.

    As long as we admit it’s fair for me to enthusiastically like my XC70.

    I’ve always liked wagons, after all.

    With the T6 engine, it goes uphill just fine, even loaded up and with stuff strapped to the roof. (One of my requirements was “significantly faster than the Corolla it replaced”; at 6.4 to 60 it qualifies.)

    And loaded it is, significantly more than once a year, with camping gear, or a pile of other stuff, and taken on logging roads in the rain, where AWD and a little extra clearance are sometimes actually useful.

    Some of us actually do want a crossover/SUV for crossover-y/SUV-y things, and that’s okay, too.

    (I mean, I’ve literally never wanted a Ferrari; I’ve always thought they were ugly, like every Corvette except the first generation.

    I know I’m an outlier.)

    • 0 avatar
      Jack Baruth

      As long as you’re getting what you want, and not what you think you have to get, right?

      The guy who bought a Corvette because he was afraid to get the Volvo he really wanted would also come in for my criticism.

      • 0 avatar
        tjh8402

        @Jack Baruth –

        “As long as you’re getting what you want, and not what you think you have to get, right?

        The guy who bought a Corvette because he was afraid to get the Volvo he really wanted would also come in for my criticism.”

        Well said. A friend of mine looked at a whole bunch of different cars – everything from an Evo to a Genesis Coupe to a Focus ST to a Camaro SS. He ended up buying a Cadillac CTS because he thought that would look best pulling up to a club in and he liked putting his Cadillac keys “on the lunch table” (we stopped at a Mazda store and he rationalized away from the Mazdas saying “if I buy a Mazda, when I sit down to lunch with friends and I put my car keys on the table, they’ll just see Mazda when I could’ve had them see Cadillac.” Needless to say he ended up spending big $ to get out of the lease on the Cadillac after he got bored with it and decided it was a rubbish car. He’s now enjoying 6 years of near $400/month payments on a high mileage used Ford C-Max, a car that he now admits he likes better than the Cadillac. Oh, and that stick shift Mazda 6 Touring is a prime candidate to replace the Ford whenever he decides to get rid of it…

      • 0 avatar
        Sigivald

        Damn right, Jack.

  • avatar
    05lgt

    I’m manly ’cause I say I am. You got a problem with that? You know what that is? Your problem.

  • avatar
    George B

    I bought a 2014 Honda Accord because I care more about the people riding in the car than the car itself. Decided that I needed a safe and reliable car for my girlfriend and her two teenage daughters and my budget was $25k. Every car I’d owned before had 2 doors, but settled for 4 doors so frequent passengers including my elderly parents wouldn’t have to make the awkward crawl into the back seat. Owning a family sedan as a daily driver doesn’t prevent me from buying a separate hobby car for myself.

  • avatar
    30-mile fetch

    Regardless of your stance on the Crossover Divide that is fracturing our great nation almost as deeply as partisan politics, this was a genuinely enjoyable read.

    “The Berlin Wall fell without a Hyundai Santa Fe tugging fecklessly at the thing with a Class II dealer-installed tow hitch…”

    Now I’ve got a mental image that will periodically keep my simple brain amused for the rest of the day.

  • avatar
    SilverCoupe

    We bought the car in the ad (well, a 1970 Toronado, which was a bit less attractive than the 1969, as the headlights were no longer hidden)but it was for my mother, not for my dad. He kept the 1964 Riviera which is my avatar. The Toronado was Platinum silver, with a black vinyl roof, and she kept it until she passed decades later.

    Regarding picking a mate, we had no expensive wedding (she didn’t even want a diamond), and we had no wedding photos. Neither was something we have ever missed. We did have an agreement that I could always pick any car of my choosing (and she can do the same for herself), which has been maintained over the decades, so I still have my silver coupe, an A5 S Line. My wife always does black; her car is a black Mini Cooper S; both cars are manuals. If you are a car guy, it helps to have to have a car gal as your mate if you want to be happy! I guess I learned that from my parents.

  • avatar
    70Cougar

    Funny, I was born within a few days of Jack, and my father traded in a ’67 427 GT500 for a Volvo wagon shortly after I was born. (Apparently I liked bouncing around in the back seat when I was an infant.) My father missed Vietnam because of a motorcycle wreck induced knee injury though.

    And I don’t have a crossover, so I agree with everything Jack said, except that I don’t think he should take his son to Disney World. Take him to rock concerts, New York City, car races, foreign countries, and other places many kids never go.

  • avatar
    Drzhivago138

    Jimmy Page may wear sunglasses all the time now, but Jeff Lynne hasn’t removed his shades since an Old Grey Whistle Test interview in 1976.

  • avatar
    turf3

    Who is more manly:

    The one who spends his life trying to live up to his duty to his country, his God, his family, his employer, and his friends, even – especially – when it means doing things he doesn’t want to do; things that make him feel and/or look foolish; things that are painful/humiliating/difficult; and deferring or forgoing altogether things he wants to do…

    Or:

    The one who spends his life trying to satisfy his desires and demonstrate to others how manly he is and that no one can tell him what to do?

    You may have walked past the first guy today, yes, he’s the one with the bald spot, the bifocals, the tired look in his eyes, the unfashionable clothing, the utilitarian car, the small house in a not-so-nice part of town.

    • 0 avatar
      ajla

      I’m not sure. Both scenarios sound terrible though.

    • 0 avatar
      heoliverjr

      Geez was does the guy trying to live up to his duty have to have such a crappy description! I don’t think that is gonna encourage anyone to live such a life!

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        ” I don’t think that is gonna encourage anyone to live such a life!”

        “Encourage”

        Courage tends to be intrinsic.

        Bravado is extrinsic and often gets confused with courage.

        My dad was born post WW1. The Great Depression hit. Being the oldest boy he had to leave school to work on the family farm that dried into dust. He left the farm and worked his way across Canada sending money home to help the family.

        No one chooses such a life and those are the heroes that go unsung.

        Which man will bring a tear to your eye and cause your chest to swell?

        A man who does what he has to do for others or a man who does what he has to do for himself?

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          However, there is a difference between a man that is a provider or holds to his responsibilities and one that lives as a frazzled, weak doormat for the rest of the world.

          I certainly hope your father did not live some weary, joyless Willy Loman – type existence.

          And let’s be honest here, someone that “sacrifices” by buying a Murano Platinum over the G37 they really wanted doesn’t really deserve to be compared to what your father went through. In the same way, someone that buys a 370Z doesn’t deserve to be classified as a selfish hedonist just a because a Versa Note would have been sufficient for their lifestyle.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            My lifestyle requires speed and lots of it. See I even have a doctor’s note your honor…

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            “I have to be going over 50 MPH at all times, or my heart will stop beating!”

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @ajla – sorry for making it sound so bleak. No. He had some fun in there and it would have been manly man stuff. He used to be a square dance caller when he was young. In some circles that would be like being a rock star. He worked hard and played hard and when he got married he just dropped the play hard part and kept on going.

            In the context of the CUV’s…… When I think of my dad’s youth, arguing over whether or not “settling” for a CUV means burning the “man card” pretty much means none of use would hold a candle to his definition of manly.

          • 0 avatar

            No, somebody that buys a 370Z should be classified as a MORAN

            Hi, Nissan! *waves*

    • 0 avatar
      Chan

      Honestly both sound like failures in the modern-era developed world. The first one is only plausibly fulfilling if his country and his community are in a time of distress and conflict, such as war or violent political instability.

      In a country that is at peace and economically sound, there is no reason to give your entire life to “the cause” out of your own free will.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        Chan – We love out of our own free will and even if one can rationalize it biologically, altruism is one thing that we can do that sets us apart and elevates us beyond mere animals.

        • 0 avatar
          Chan

          No disagreement there.

          A person who willingly chooses to spend his life on charity missions all over the world to help the impoverished, and is happy and can survive doing so, is just as successful to me as another one who founded a hugely lucrative business because he discovered a goods or service that society needed. Or a career lawyer or doctor who finds fulfillment serving society in those roles.

          On the other hand, life success eludes the guy with the big house and nice cars that says, “My parents wanted me to become a [insert lucrative job], but honestly it’s a crappy career.” Same with the guy in the dead-end job who complains about it but is not actively looking for anything better.

          The key is seizing your own life (again, with the caveat of no war or social unrest), not pandering to what you think society or your parents prefer. In the end you are only accountable to yourself. I’m of the belief that humans are benevolent in nature, so we are biologically wired to want to do good……in various ways.

          Back to cars…….my parents always bug me to get a big luxury brand SUV. “You’re doing well, you have a kid now, you should get a Mercedes GL for when your in-laws visit.” The right car to project the right image.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            Chan – I like to think that we are biologically wired to do good.I find it hard to be optimistic at times.
            I’m more inclined to believe that we are selfish creatures with the ability to rise above it.

            I can understand the jaded police belief that there are only 2 classes of people: criminals and potential criminals.

            Unfortunately so many things around us shape and define who we are. “Seizing your own life” can be an extremely difficult thing to do. If “settling” is the opposite to “Seizing your own life” then I’m all for refusing to settle.

            To make a long story short, we need to understand “why we are?” before we can change “who we are”.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Re: Criminals

            Yep, all criminals. The dumb ones are robbing the 7-11. The smart ones are up in the corner office at their desk. Or in DC.

            Fear both.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            CoreyDL – the ones at a desk or in one’s capitol are way more dangerous.

  • avatar
    TDIGuy

    Ya, what he said!

    (I hope my wife doesn’t google my name.)

  • avatar
    Macca

    I just want to thank Jack for writing pieces like this.

    It’s mind-blowingly absurd and highly disappointing that a member of the B&B would resort to SJW tactics in an attempt to silence Jack’s opinion. Doesn’t he know there’s a place to discuss all things PC & automotive (Jalopnik/Gawker)?

  • avatar
    kvndoom

    Fiancée loves vans. She wants to replace her 2005 T&C in the next couple years with… another van. She loves having 7 seats, 5 of which can be removed if cargo needs to be hauled. She even gets to ride high. No interest in *UV’s of any sort.

    I drive whatever I want, so long as having it doesn’t keep food off the table. As far as settling goes, I got off better than a lot of men I know. She’s a keeper.

    But well… our dogs you won’t like…

  • avatar
    dculberson

    Jack, I love how many panties you have put in a bunch with this piece.

    Who knew so many people were deeply and personally invested in their CUV ownership?

  • avatar
    brett_murphy

    I’d rather have BOTH the Forester XT and WRX than one STi.
    I bought the 2004 Forester XT because it was half of the price of the STi. I can fit three kayaks on the top of it while towing my boat. It’s also great for parts runs to the local pick-n-pull. Try fitting a rotary engine into an STi (excepting the hatchback models, of course). Plus, the Q-ship factor is kind of neat.
    Additionally, it also has a huge advantage in ground clearance over my WRX when the rallycross venues are going to be muddy and rutted, and I can fit truck tires on it to increase the advantage in the mud. The WRX is for use when the dirt is hard packed or I’m on pavement.

  • avatar
    nickoo

    Brilliant. I realized what you did after Iraq. Fcuck the world, never compromise, never settle. So far Im doing pretty well at that. Moved across the country three times chasing better opportunities. Unmarried. No kids. No gf. No stress. Living 8 blocks from the beach, job I love, money is decent…Life is good, and fcuck craft beer, especially IPAs. But I will take a tall glass of that ketal one.

  • avatar
    Kevin Jaeger

    This article was greatly entertaining, as usual.

    But one can sense the easily offended getting closer to gathering their forces and bring down a Justine Sacco style #outragestorm on Jack.

    When they inevitably unleash their petulant hashtag storm we know Jack will dismiss them with the contempt they deserve. But what about Mark and Verticalscope? Will they take the coward’s way out and defenestrate Jack?

    • 0 avatar
      dantes_inferno

      >But one can sense the easily offended getting closer to gathering their forces and bring down a Justine Sacco style #outragestorm on Jack.

      In the words of a young Eddie Murphy:

      “Those who get offended easily, ya’ll should just get the F*** out now!”

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I doubt Jack’s article will amount to more than just a drop in the sea of CUVs. Thousands of new CUVs were sold during the time it took Jack to write and edit this article. Two door sedans are a vanishing breed. I have two pickups which are more than enough to satisfy my manhood and both are more functional than a 2 door coupe. Also I do not think it is below my manhood to drive my wife’s 2013 CRV–I like the all wheel drive, heated seats, and the navigation system. CUVs serve a purpose and are very practical and functional like a Swiss Army Knife. I kind of like the functionality of a Swiss Army knife even though there are more expensive and flashy knifes.

  • avatar
    gottacook

    Supposedly the era of computer-controlled self-driving cars is coming soon. I wonder how that will affect the (supposed) relationship between masculinity (or someone’s view of masculinity) and choice of car. If we’re all being driven around, what does it matter what the shape of the car is, or its power or maneuverability or what sort of transmission it has? Or whether it has some future era’s equivalent of screaming-eagle decals and hood scoops?

  • avatar
    danio3834

    As far as settling goes, I really wanted to have an aircraft carrier with a drag strip on it by now, but there’s always tomorrow.

  • avatar
    cojo88

    I really like this article, since I have a son I think about manhood quite a bit. When I think about what I consider a True man it is pretty different than what Jack has described. I agree a True man is not driven by fear of his wife, or anyone else, he goes after the desires of his heart with full intention of obtaining them and will settle for nothing less. It is a unfortunate man who desires temporal things.

    No one has greater love than this, that someone would lay down his life for his friends.

  • avatar
    maranello

    The sad truth of it Mr. Baruth, is that too many of us lead sad and pathetic lives filled with compromise. That’s why, in part we read people like you. To at least see whats it’s like to live the life that is beyond our means.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      Very little is ever truly beyond your means, go out there and make what you want happen.

    • 0 avatar
      Lou_BC

      maranello –

      Really?

      Why is there pathos in compromise?

      I read Jack because it is outrageous and funny.

      I don’t care about a life beyond my means because it means nothing to me.

      • 0 avatar
        maranello

        Yes really, as in those are my realized sentiments.

        Why is there pathos in compromise?
        Because there is regret in failure.

        I find Jack outrageous and funny as well.

        At the risk of getting all Hamlet on you, as a sentient being I can’t help but get pangs of pathos when reading about experiences that in my wildest dreams I’ll never realize.

  • avatar
    omer333

    I don’t know, I hate “The Great Gatsby”, I thought it was boring and Jay Gatsby was a whiny bitch. That’s just me.

    A wise man once told me a real man does what he wants, drives what he wants, drinks what he wants, smokes what he wants, and eats what he wants.

    • 0 avatar
      dantes_inferno

      A wise man once told me a real man does what he wants (without the need to be politically correct), drives what he wants (as long as it’s not a chick car like a CUV or Cabriolet), drinks what he wants (as long as he avoids the estrogen-laced milk products), smokes what he wants (as long as the cigarettes aren’t fake), and eats what he wants (health be damned).

      There. That fixes it.

  • avatar
    Chocolatedeath

    What the hell did I just read…

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    I doubt most of the youth today see a vehicle as masculine or feminine. Most cars, trucks, and suvs are more like appliances. How macho is a vehicle with automatic transmission, climate control, power windows, fob, power steering, power brakes, navigation system, and touch screen? Not my father’s or grandfather’s definition of manliness. Eventually we will be riding around in self driving vehicles and as one of the comments above stated most will not care what shape a vehicle comes in. I think there are more important things in life than obsessing about what type of vehicle you drive. Drive what you like and enjoy it.

    If you want to be real macho then shave with a straight edge and throw away those fancy 5 bladed razors that pivot and have lubrication strips. Modern life has brought a lot of conveniences and a lot of changes for the better and some for the worse. Better to adapt to change than become extinct.

  • avatar
    jefmad

    While I don’t agree with you about crossovers (I drive a BMW X3), Jack your my kind of dude.
    When I need or want the sensations that a great auto would give me , I throw my leg over one of my motorcycles and realize that no car could possibly compare to that experience.

  • avatar
    John

    There are men who obsess over, and worry abouth their masculinity, and there are men who don’t.

    • 0 avatar
      Chan

      There are different types of men who buy Toyota RAV4s:

      1. The kind that loves the new RAV4 and can’t stop talking about it,
      2. The kind that needs that particular size of family vehicle, and
      3. The kind that buy what their wives told them to buy, even though their wives already have similar cars.

      I don’t agree with the taste of 1), but he is happy. And masculine.
      I sympathise with 2), but he can get something he likes later on.
      I do not want to be 3), and that is Jack’s main point here. This type will find it very hard to maintain personal happiness in life. Not “masculine”, if you will.

  • avatar
    Chan

    Jack’s writing either hits hard or flies way over my head, but I can identify with this one.

    In an age where media sells on sensationalism, one can get the impression that men have become submissive, especially after having kids. They “settle” and buy boring cars while wishing that they didn’t need to.

    There are two discrete issues with family men:

    1. Mutual respect between spouses. This is outside of the scope of TTAC and I will not elaborate further than spouses should respect each other’s personalities and interests within financial and timely reason.

    2. Self-esteem in men. Women have gained the self-respect and confidence that they deserve. That doesn’t mean men need to surrender those things in the presence of women. Forget about projecting masculinity. As a person, you are in charge of your own life and the consequences that you reap. Barring serious medical problems, if marriage and kids are sucking out all of your soul, you are not taking charge of your life. Tell your partner what you want and what it’s going to cost. Reciprocate with support for what your partner wants and what it costs. That is REAL masculinity, or whatever you want to call it.

    I overcame the fear of “owning something that’s out of my league” and DD’d a Porsche Cayman for four years, although I am a little more careful with showing my current project at work. My neighbour has two kids, his wife drives a CX-5 and he has a brand new WRX. Another young dad down the block had an Abarth 500 and recently traded for a ’16 Mustang. Lots of people are doing life right.

  • avatar
    kevnsd

    Jack is this the most commented on TTAC post ever? How does it rank for you without regard to site you posted to? Inspired and passionate writing that’s obviously hit a nerve. Thank you!

    • 0 avatar
      DeadWeight

      His last Fixed Abode essay of just a few days ago (Feb 18th) now has over 559 posts as of now.

      http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2016/02/no-fixed-abode-high-low-high-low-off-work-go/

      Jack’s ‘Watery Big Bang’ avoidable contact essay should be required reading for high school freshmen and anyone who is considering any career in marketing or advertising.

      http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/10/avoidable-contact-the-watery-big-bang-the-32-step-power-steering-fluid-check-disposable-faux-ury/

  • avatar
    Luke42

    You guys cringing over CUVs are adorable. [Pinch cheek]

    I drive a minivan. Real men choose the right tool for the job, and don’t spend a lot of time whining about it. In case you’re wondering, yes, I am wearing flannel.

    After 12 years of ownership, my wife’s Prius was Silveradoed and totaled. Since none of the cars we really want are on the market in the US (she wants a 3-row Prius with sliding doors, and I want a 200-mile BEV), so we’re buying her a Mazda5.

    So, we’re going to be a two minivan family for a while! We’re just that damn practical, and proud of it!

  • avatar
    AoLetsGo

    Jack thinks that men who drive CUVs are pussy’s, that’s nice. I can buy anything (in reason) I want and I bought one a while back. My choice, and it has been very useful for my family and my active lifestyle. It will soon become just my winter beater and haul mobile when I buy a sporty car for the summer. By the way I work out twice a day, compete in athletic races, and at 6’2″ 195lbs nobody calls me a wimp – to my face :)

    • 0 avatar
      Chan

      Pretty sure Jack is just drawing on a generalisation to make his point. I’ve modified my perspective of the CUV. From a pretend-offroader to a more accommodating evolution of the automobile.

      CUV ingress and egress are wonderful, and I can imagine I would appreciate this when I am old.

      Smaller CUVs are also much shorter in length than 7-seater full MPVs which I know are THE best space-for-dollars deal, but they really are very large cars. For a family with 1-2 children, an Odyssey is overkill. The Mazda5 and CR-V are right around the sweet spot.

      And yes, there is a CUV segment that I despise. The bloated 7-seaters like the Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander. No reason not to go minivan over those overpriced hulks, unless you really despise sliding doors or you’re shopping in the luxury segment.

      • 0 avatar
        tjh8402

        The Mazda5 was a fantastic vehicle that drove brilliantly and was extremely practical but let down by it’s old school inefficient powertrain. My sister really wanted one but saw no reason to buy it since the fuel economy was the same as the full size minivans. I fully understand why Mazda let the vehicle die, but I can’t help wondering how great a Skyactive Mazda5 would’ve been.

  • avatar
    hybridkiller

    Jack-

    I am one of those people who routinely clicks on your pieces – not for your viewpoint, but because the ensuing firestorm in the comments section is always top shelf entertainment.

    You are very good at what you do – inciting spirited debate. I say this in spite of the fact that I don’t think much of your grasp of human nature, which appears to be responsible for producing your (however amusing) oversimplified rants. Rants which, despite being peppered with colorful literary and cultural allusions, manage to remain somehow devoid of any nuance (which I have to believe is at least somewhat intentional).

    But Jack – for the love of all that does not suck – PLEASE give the “I get more action than God” thing a rest. It doesn’t enhance what seems to be your primary objective, and really only serves to make you look rather pathetic.

    On a positive note, props for making it through an entire article without mentioning your Paul Reed Smith collection…

  • avatar
    laserwizard

    Pardon me, but that slogan “separates the men from the boys” had me thinking about Penn State football and the Catholic Church. Perhaps had both institutions had more Toronados available, there would be less mingling of the young and the old in games of leap frog and soap on a rope dropping.

  • avatar
    Seth Parks

    Fantastic, entertaining, insightful distillation of my two decades of car ownership. Thank you Jack for putting words to the challenge and providing an appropriate perspective. To each their own. But no wife, life, or circumstance can extract the enthusiast within, or the acquisition decisions that go along with the passion. Long live the purity inherent in evading compromise.

  • avatar
    SkyNet

    As a guy who “settled” for the exact reasons described above (wife, kid, career related societal judgments) on his last car, I approve Dr. Baruth’s message.

  • avatar
    Jeff S

    At least in this article Jack posted a picture of an Olds Toronado and not an LTD II which is a rehashed Torino Elite. The Toronado is a way cooler car.

    There are other ways that I can be a man without obsessing over what type of vehicle I drive. I can always get out the straight edge razor and shave like a real man and use a leather strop to sharpen my razor.


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