For Christmas last year, the ever-wonderful and Italian car-loving Badger bought me an Alfa Romeo Mito Cloverleaf, now known as Tony (‘cos he’s mi Tony, innit? Apologies).
I do love Tony. He’s my first Italian car – I come from a family of French car owners, with the occasional daring flirtation with Volvos – and despite Badger’s dire warnings of fuel leaks, brake failings and a tendency to shed bits of metal on the motorway, Tony has done very well indeed. Unlike Badger’s new Giulietta, which after a few months looks like it’s been driven to hell and back, with demonic scratchings on the bumpers and a whiff of sulphur from the exhaust.
I’ve always thought that cars have faces – the Toyota Yaris has the blank-eyed stare of a Botoxed housewife, the Audi A1 resembles Hannibal Lecter peering over his restraining mask, and the Ford Mondeo looks like he’s about to call you ‘mate’, swing his suit jacket over his shoulder, and invite you to the rugby club to sink a few pints of Fosters.
Since cars are one of the most deadly machines known to man – and the horror genre is littered with malevolent vehicles, from Christine to Duel to Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (pretty scary when you’re seven) – may I present my beginner’s guide to hell on wheels.
Firstly, the current occupant of my driveway, and his chiropteric counterpart:
Next – it’s the most popular car for middle managers, and a decaying undead teenager:
Then a manic-eyed monster that will get slashed, trashed, gashed, and crushed and STILL keep on going:
Then a badly-designed, disproportionate, bolted-together behemoth – and Mary Shelley’s most famous creation:
Finally – and this is s stretch, admittedly – a derivative, interminable series that isn’t as clever as it thinks it is and is sometimes used by bank robbers.
(Apologies if anyone reading this blog owns, drives, or has coveted any of the cars in this post. For a few moments I was possessed by the baleful spirit of an aging, poodle-haired, denim-clad motoring journalist.)