Ram Owner Named Assman Sticks It to The Man
You can’t keep Dave Assman down. After repeatedly having his request for a personalized license plate rejected for being too offensive, the Saskatchewan Ram owner decided to advertise his family name in a manner no one can miss.
While Assman’s provincial government insurer won’t greenlight a plate, there’s nothing they can do to stop him from displaying an image of the plate that dare not speak its name, loud and proud, on the vehicle itself. Take that, bureaucratic puritans.
Dave Assman lives in Melville, a town an hour and change down the road from Regina, home to a certain Dick Assman of 1990s Letterman fame.
If you’ve never been to the place, a person encounters the name Assman quite a bit in the Land of Living Skies. It’s a German name, reportedly pronounced “oss-man,” though some Western friends dispute this. My buddy’s town contains an Assman Field, site of baseball games, family BBQs, and other wholesome activities. I once saw an Assman funeral parlor.
Still, despite repeated attempts dating back to the ’90s, Dave Assman’s family name is simply too inflammatory for Saskatchewan Government Insurance. That name is a cold, cold, monolith, by the way. Yikes.
“I think they are too worried that people are going to have hurt feelings about something that is complete nonsense,” Assman told the National Post last week. “Even if it wasn’t my last name who is it going to hurt?”
Saskatchewan Government Insurance’s Tyler McMurchy doesn’t see it that way. The insurer’s spokesman said that, regardless of its less-than-naughty usage, “Assman” falls in with a number of other words, phrases, and alphanumeric combos other drivers might find offensive.
“Even if a word is someone’s name and pronounced differently than the offensive version, that’s not something that would be apparent to other motorists who will see the plate,” he told NP.
We all remember that infamous Seinfeld episode, and with good reason. It’s utter comedic brilliance. In the end, the plate’s real owner is revealed as less of a ladies’ man and more of a medical practitioner. Still, governments are not known for their sense of humor. After his latest rejection, Assman didn’t fold. He got even.
Like the Alberta man who legally changed his gender to score a lower rate, Assman got what he wanted while also flipping the bird at his insurance provider:
Looks like Mr. Assman got the last laugh after @SGItweets denied his request for a vanity plate with his last name!
CC: @JohnGormleyShow, @TylerMcMurchy pic.twitter.com/tjvj9NbtqM
— Taylor MacPherson (@TaylorMacP) February 13, 2019
And you thought glitzy “RAM” lettering was bold. Naturally, Canadians rallied around Assman’s show of defiance.
In a week where it feels like Canada is lacking a hero, the Saskatchewan government has refused Dave Assman — whose name is Dave Assman — the right to put his last name on a custom license plate. In protest, he has put an Assman decal on his truck. https://t.co/dryztdCzSz pic.twitter.com/L4J8s6OyN6
— Sean Craig (@sdbcraig) February 13, 2019
Not everyone was happy to see the Assman Ram, however. A California Twitter user who lives thousands of miles from Saskatchewan chose to the truck’s new decals:
I’m sorry for anyone burdened with a difficult to explain name but the government is right and he is wrong. His name is identical to a sexist and misogynist term and its public display without explanation and context is offensive, and not something the government should abet.
— Warren Terra (@warren__terra) February 13, 2019
We wonder how Mr. Assman would respond to such a complaint.
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I don't understand all of the fuss! His name is Assman...not Ass Man. Eighteen years ago I ordered a plate "6UL DV8" just to see if anyone would raise an eyebrow. It took 11 years before someone (a police officer!) told me they got the joke.
I still remember the I"heart"TOFU plate's rejection. No son, tofu is not a vegetable.