Music for driving: Maria Muldaur / 1973 Pontiac Grand Prix

Midnight at the Oasis, by Maria Muldaur: http://youtu.be/VlrKETxwRvM

1973 Pontiac Full Line-02-03

Cruising along the Pacific Coast Highway in my 1973 Pontiac Grand Prix, on a magic summer midnight. The sky is filled with stars and the windows are down, letting in the soft Pacific air that playfully fondles both her hair and mine and caresses our souls with its perfume. No need to drive fast. No need to talk. Just breathe in the moment. The Pontiac glides gracefully from one sweeping turn to another, like an inspired dancer. And the soothing burble of the big, lazy 455 V8 becomes the perfect match for that dreamy guitar solo…

SUVs are Like Jeans

Yeah, I came to that conclusion after watching the BBC 3 documentary “Secrets of the Superbrands” (Here: http://youtu.be/t0DOEK0uZZo ). Pretty cool documentary about the fashion industry and the power of brands, etc. Anyways, they told the story of the origins of the Levis brand and how it started as a way to salvage canvas from the Civil War into work clothes for miners. 

Imagen …we are fashion trendsetters.

And thus was born the ubiquitous blue jeans.

Imagen I invented the jeans, now look at my beard!

I was encumbered by an epiphany right there and then as I realized that that’s just how the SUV started and evolved! The parallels are there: The original CJ Jeep started as a way to use the Jeep after World War 2, just like Levis jeans after the Civil War. Mind you, the Jeep didn’t start as the fun-loving off-roader it later evolved into, but rather as a work horse. In fact, they didn’t even know for sure what the Jeep was good for, so they were trying to make it into some sort of farm tractor/utility conveyance. 

Imagen

In the future, we’ll plow shopping mall parking lots!

The Land Rover had such agricultural beginnings as well.

Imagen We’re not in a mall yet.

But as it so happens with many new things, The People had a different opinion, so the Jeep became first an off-roader and then, as it evolved into our beloved SUVs, it became first a means to convey an attitude and an image of rugged, active life, and then, the fashion statement it is today. The jeans followed a similar path. After being solely work clothes until somewhere around mid-20th century, suddenly a new type of human being, the teenager, began to wear them, not for work but, you guessed it, to express an attitude. 

Imagen  We used to be miners!

Imagen I used to plow the fields!

Today, $100 fashion-brand jeans are as far removed from work clothes as $70.000 luxo SUVs are from the humble farm tool origins of the 4×4.