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Old 01-14-2013, 06:25 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by mishka View Post
.... Any advice on how to decide the gender and/or the name?
Also i'm trying to think of cool liscense plate letter/number combinations for a cool and/or funny plate. I might make the plate the name of the car. ...I might make the plate the name of the car.
My advice is "don't". It is BAD to ascribe human characteristics (even a name) to a machine. They don't like it and they will let you know of their displeasure. (The same person who told me that also told me to "never be superstitious -- it's bad luck.")

Originally Posted by mishka View Post
.... Also i'm trying to think of cool liscense plate letter/number combinations for a cool and/or funny plate.
Clever license plates are a whole different thing, and can be very cool. As long as they observe the rule above, that is, and are not dumb in some other way.

One good one I recall was VRMVRMM on an old Saab 96. I'm sure somebody somewhere has ZOOMZOOM on a Miata or Mazda3. The point is that the plate should fit with the car somehow or it will look dorky.

My favorite personlized license plate of all time was AUREVOIR on a red (naturally) Ferrari spyder. In Georgia I sometimes heard that pronounced "orrie vorie", which most recognize as "'Bye, y'all" in French. Some may cringe at any language other than Italian on a Ferrari, but I'm sure CIAO was aready taken. I'm not sure how your Focus, designed in Germany and manufactured in the US, will feel about wearing a plate in Russian, but you better ask it before doing that.

I never got to see the front of that Ferrari, but that plate would not seem as appropriate there. (California requires both.) If it were not illegal to have a different plate on the front, "BONJOUR" would have been great for that. From the rear, AUREVOIR seemed like the perfect message as he took it through the gears disappearing down the road. (That is also one of my favorite musical instruments, a close second to the rumble and roar of a big American V8. Like Ford GTs at LeMans in 1966.)

Most likely he had more than one experience being stopped by law enforcement officers for such displays of acceleration, assuming they could get close enough for him to see the flashing lights or hear their siren. I always imagined one of them greeting him with "Bonjour, mon ami" before asking him for his license and registration.

Which brings up another disadvantage of personalized plates. If your driving style ever attracts the attention of "the law", your chances of getting lost in a crowd of Corollas and Civics are much slimmer. I guess that part didn't matter to the guy in the Ferrari, unless he had a Ferrari dealer nearby where he could slip into to lot and park in a squeeze.

That actually worked for me once in bright green Porsche. I pulled in the lot and found an empty spot right next to another one just like mine. (If I were superstitious I'd bet that spot was only vacant because I had not named that car. Yet.) By the time the officer got there I was inside the parts department looking out the window at him scratching his head. I guess he had not seen my plate well enough to remember it as I drove by him a ways up the road. A personalized plate probably would have blown it for me in that case. It might not matter as much these days, with almost every move we make recorded on digital video somewhere.
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