Yesterday, on the radio, I heard these words,
“While Ford is largely thought of as a [pick-up] truck company here in America, in Europe it’s different…”
I’ve lived here for 14 years and I consider myself fairly fluent in American culture but it’s the deep, ingrained stuff, the assumptions, that still trip me up. Even after that ad a few years ago, that will stay with me until I die, in which a butch country singer declared that if he had money, he’d tell us what he’d do: he’d go downtown and buy a Ford Truck or two. Crazy ’bout a Ford truck…
I still think of Ford as the company of the Fiesta, the Escort, even the Ka, although it launched after I left the country. In other words: the ‘small’ car. And the Escort was one of the larger cars bombing around on the road when I was growing up. You aspired to a Ford car. You bought Sunbeams and Hyundais and dreamed of the day you could upgrade to Mondeo. Then I went back for a visit one day and they’d invented the Smart Car, which made even me do a double-take.
When I moved here, the Honda Civic was the mockable small car, which still seems strange to me even after years of seeing my Volkwagon Passat WAGON dwarfed by most other ‘cars’ in the parking lot (see? I speak Merkin…)
But apparently the oil prices mean that I’ll be seeing these cars again (although not the Escort, since it’s now the Focus, isn’t it?).
In fact, I drove past a garage on the Main Line the other day that was stuffed full of Smart Cars.
I still want a bike.