Monday, January 23, 2012

Don't Judge Me By the Color of My Minivan

I drive a red minivan but I am not a red minivan driver. Don't get me wrong, I love my minivan. I am quite happy with my Swagger Wagon.

But I am not a red minivan driver, red being the key word that makes this descriptor inaccurate. My minivan is red, a dark red. It is a fine looking red but I still, after all these years, don't feel like I am the type of person who drives a red car.

I never wanted a red car or a red minivan. I like a nice blue color on my cars. Maybe even silver or white. But not red.

I remember being at the dealership, back when trying to find a minivan on a dealer's lot was next to impossible. They did happen to have one minivan available with all the safety and convenience features I wanted (An automatic back hatch that opened with a push of a button was my dream. Oh and those side impact airbags are probably a good thing to have too.) and none of the extras we did not want (those built in DVD players that would have my kids begging and whining constantly with me eventually giving in and wasting my precious tv time in the car).

Honestly it was the perfect minivan, except for the color. It was red.

I asked about finding what I wanted in another color. Suddenly the price jumped along with the timeline. It turns out getting exactly what you want costs money. But taking a minivan, that has sat there for a few weeks because it doesn't have a DVD player, off the dealer's hands can score you a deal. If you are willing to drive a red van around town.

And I have to admit that was a big if because people make assumptions about you based on the car you drive. Is it too flashy? Is it too trashy? Is it a statement car? A statement color?

You know BMW for flash. Mercedes for class. Toyota for reliability. Kia for price.

I wanted a blue minivan. It was my dream car.

But then I remembered, it is just a car. A way to get from point A to point B. You don't even see the color of the exterior really when you are in the car. I could pretend it was the perfect blue color when I was driving enjoying those leather seats and air conditioning.

I got a really good deal on my minivan because it was not the color I wanted. (Even as I took my time pondering if I could drive a red car, the price dropped even more.) I like a good deal. I really like a good deal on a car.

So now I drive a red minivan. But I still feel a need to explain that red was not my color choice. Because I am not a red car driver.

Which is really silly since some of the best people I know drive red cars.

And now that I write this all, I am curious what is your dream automobile color? What assumptions do you make based on the kind of car someone drives? (Or is it just me that judges people?)


  1. Love this.  I am kind of boring - my favorite color is white!  Classic, never goes out of style and the safest color on the road.  It is not just you who judge people… my normal assumption when I see someone with the big fancy SUVs, Hummers, etc… they are in debt up to their ears with an enormous car payment.  Bad assumption, but I still do it.  :-)

  2. Ha--it's so funny that because I've always known you since driving your red minivan, I can hardly imagine you driving any other color!  I think it suits you.  You are stealthy -- understated flashy . . . :) My SUV, which has soo many miles on it from all of our road trips, is black, and it just feels comfortable.  I feel like white would make me too inconspicuous now, if I were to switch.  Is that weird?

  3. up until last spring I drove a big RED suburban and I hated it. I felt so obvious and couldn't blend in.  Now we have a Green Siena, much better and anonymous.  I think this insight speaks volumes :)

  4. oohhh green. sounds pretty. I've considered a Suburban sized vehicle next with all the boys' hockey gear and them constantly growing but I don't think I could drive something that big. I like to blend in like you.