“Hey, Mexican Cavalier with US plates. Neat!”

Isn’t doing things that don’t make good sense the most hipster thing of all?

Not just “made” — “bought,” too!
  • Not just “made” — “bought,” too!
  • Photograph by SamHolt6/Wikimedia commons

Dear Hipster:

So, I was reading the letter from the guy who apparently read a seventeen year old Reader article about buying cars in Mexico, went to TJ to get himself a 2019 Cavalier, and then took it back to Ohio. Or maybe he only wants to do it, but hasn’t actually pulled the trigger on the new car. I couldn’t tell exactly from his letter. Either way, is it as hipster as I think it is to drive around in a Mexican version of a garden-variety Chevy, or is this just a huge hassle for zero street-cred whatsoever?

— Danny

I asked around, and I guess, especially for those of us hipsters here in California, it’s virtually impossible to actually go to Mexico, buy a car not otherwise sold in the U.S., and slap a license plate on it. However, because of that impossibility, anyone who jumps through a trillion government hoops to actually drive a Mexican car around in California without getting the thing swiftly impounded deserves some kind of hipster props for doing it the hard way. It would be sort of like the hipster who wants to drink a Mexican Coke, but the one they have at the taco stand around the corner won’t do, so he drives to Tecate, gets a bottle of coke, and then waits in line for seventy minutes to get back across the border. Such exclusive authenticity can be measured in terms of disproportionate effort.

Even more ridiculous, I find it kind of hilarious that homeboy here wants to get a 2019 Cavalier. Maybe 1 out of every 250,000 people he passes on the Ohio freeways will look over and think, “Hey, Mexican Cavalier with US plates. Neat!” The rest of us will probably think it’s a Chevy Cruze — probably because it is a Chevy Cruze.

Maybe this is the kind of cool, “in the know” hipster exclusivity equivalent of having a 1995 copy of Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness with the reprise version of “Tonight, Tonight.” I can get behind that. But maybe this is the equivalent of a hipster who wants a glass of Arrogant Bastard, but instead of going to the store and buying one, he infiltrates Stone Brewing to steal the formula, recreates an industrial scale brewery operation in miniature, and produces a batch of indistinguishable ale that he decants into an identical bottle except the label is trimmed in Pantone 185 instead of Pantone 179...or whatever. Then, he sits around drinking it in front of his friends and really hoping they’ll notice. Seriously though, they still basically sell the El Camino in Mexico. You coulda had yourself an El Camino, or something very much like it, for all that trouble! Dang.

Nope. This move wouldn’t make much sense. But, hold on a second, isn’t doing things that don’t make good sense the most hipster thing of all? Well, maybe so. But this ain’t that. Why? Because I said so, that’s why. But, wait, “You’re not my Dad!” you might say. “You’re just some kook in skinny jeans!” Fair enough. You don’t have to do what I say because I say so; although, if you’re reading this, it means you came here looking for answers, so maybe that makes me kind of like your Dad. If so, I’m gonna need you to pick up your fair share of the chores while I rest my eyes over here in this armchair.

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