Early last year, I came across a so-called “research” article claiming that people who play car racing video games tend to get attached, become car enthusiasts, and end up purchasing more expensive sports cars. At that time, my interest in cars was close to zero. I hadn’t driven in years, and had no particular desire to drive or own a car.
Then I bought Burnout Paradise for PS3. It was on sale.
I beat that game. Then I bought and beat Midnight Club: Los Angeles Complete Edition. Then I bought Blur, and have 2-3 more racing titles that I hope to get my hands on. I watched all four Fast and the Furious movies, a franchise that I used to think was stupid. I re-watched Initial D. I started being able to name more and more vehicles on the road, and I get more excited seeing “unusual” cars around. I developed a particular desire for the Lamborghini designs, and I learned to tell apart exotic cars that I can’t afford now from those that I can never afford.
Naturally, I needed to go to some car shows. In April, I went with David and Adam to the New York International Auto Show at the Javits Center. It was a manufacturer’s showcase of mostly boring road cars, but the few concept cars, exotic sports cars, and Rolls Royce / Bentley were pretty great:
Then in July, I went with Phil to the other kind of car show, where people brought their proud rides pimped out with all sorts of legal and illegal upgrades. Some were lame, some were ugly, and some were simply weird. But there were some serious art works that just blew us away. Why anyone would spend more money painting a car than the car’s base price was beyond us, but it was awesome to see.