A person’s vehicle speaks volumes about one’s character. You are what you drive. Sitting in a traffic jam and staring out your window, it is easy to read someone’s character, favorite color, neighborhood and even second name, just by judging from the kind of whip they are rolling. The car you spin provides a sneak peek into your aspirations. It defines you more than your hairstyle or wardrobe does.
For example, the first thing that comes to mind whenever I see a Subaru Imprezza changing lanes is a truant teenage boy, especially when it is dyed in multifarious colors like yellow and red. It is the hallmark of youthful exuberance. Notorious for its noise and speed, thus preferred by guys who believe that velocity equals virility and has quickie written all over it. Thus anyone behind such wheels probably sports a Mohawk and has too much blood in his alcohol system.
Any twenty-something years young lady, who take Oprah a little too literally drives a Toyota Vitz. A cloud of independence hangs over her like a curse. It says you just got a job. Preferred by single women who wear independence on their sleeves. They would not say red if they can say scarlet. Probox on the other hand was made in Meru, for obvious reasons- miraa. It says practical, average man who enjoys being part of the crowd. A person who considers fuel economy the car’s strongest point. The Allion series is for the lower middle class who live in Nairobi West or Kile or Donholm, and save up all year to attend Blankets and Wine. He is obsessive and in need of validation, and winces when unfollowed on Twitter.
BMW: Says aspiring middle class card holding member in need of validation. The kind that races between traffic lights and complains about the lack of autobahns in Kenya.
If you own a double cabin Toyota Hilux in Kenya, and you didn’t bag it in one of Safaricoms’s promotion, or redeemed it from your bonga points, then you are a man who dreams about an outdoor life but cannot pitch a tent to save his life.
Range Rovers, most of the time elegant, suave and sleek, especially when they are black. They make a statement wherever they are parked- a loud, proud and arrogant statement that reeks of a recent windfall from here to Timbuktu.
They are however in the province of people battling midlife crisis and eager to prove that life starts after 40 and maintaining image is key. They are a bitch to park but all the stares compensate for the inconvenience.
Land Cruiser/ Rover; ragged older man, young at heart who chalks the discovery some nondescript bar in the middle of nowhere, serving cold beer as a worthy bragging point.
Any person who is chauffeured in a Mercedes Benz C- class is picked up from JKIA when he lands from business trips. He shops at Galleria, smokes nothing cheaper than Dunhill, even though his doctor has to scratch soot out of his X-rays sheets to examine his chest. He is an unapologetic collector of status symbols. Likely to make a fuss if the bar doesn’t stock his brand of single malt whisky. I bet his liver is as panoramic as the politician’s conscience being driven to Passat.
The man or lady in a Noah or Voxy must be happily married, keeps an eight-to-five job and helps their kids with their homework. These whips were built to drive kids to school in on your way to work and then back when the fat lady sings. They suck up to their bosses at work in the hope of getting a promotion so that their kids will someday attend the type of schools that have yellow school buses.
They owe their success to divine intervention.
Lamborghini, Bugatti, Bentley and others of their ilk were meant for superstars in music videos. Typical narcissists that would fall in love with their reflection in a mirror. They would be lost without the car. The kind that walks with their hands on their crotch and trot as if listening to a beat; has platinum grills and his vocabulary is bloated with curse words and expletives. Most of the time there is a half-dressed girl gyrating on his side or on the bonnet. These smug nimrods adore the spotlight and often hoard the headlines with three common eccentricities: 1) they either shot someone or got smoked; 2) they are dating/broken up with some other celebrity; or 3) they made a sex-tape that found its way into Youtube.
Kenyan luminaries do not fit this bill though.
Of course these observations are 100% conclusive, but they sure hold significant amount of water. However, the day I will see a Kenyan rap star spinning a Chrysler of his/her own, I will be sure to make a retraction.
(P.S: find part of this article in Kenya Yetu Edition 6 pg 39)