Bumper stickers bore, score

Column by Craig Marshall Smith


You can learn a lot in a traffic jam. You can learn a lot about people when you’re parked on the freeway.

You can find out where someone went to college, or where someone wishes they had gone to college, by their decals. Is it a misdemeanor to pretend you went to USC? I think it should be a misdemeanor to attend USC, but that’s because I went to UCLA. The Trojans are as lowlife as Chinese raccoons.

I saw an “I Like Ike” sticker on a Corvair. I figured the driver would be a senior-senior citizen. He wasn’t. It was a kid who was playing drums, or pretending to. I’m sure he was listening to The Who. The illegitimate son of Keith Moon.

We like to use our cars to preach to many choirs. Our car signs reflect strong opinions about the government, specific politicians, the economy, jobs, firearms, immigration and same-sex marriages.

I never see stickers that advocate drain cleaners or Q-tips.

Now and then I see a fish on legs. A Sturgis sticker. You know what that means.

There are also comic bumper stickers. Bumpers are a good place to show others that humor, wit and satire are much more difficult than most people realize. I have watched a few minutes of Craig Ferguson and I just stare.

Our bumpers enable us to think that we are amusing by acquisition, rather than by fact. You can buy humor, you just can’t do it on your own. That’s why we have laff riot greeting cards. I return all laff riot cards to the senders.

“I’m not 40. I’m 18 with 22 years of experience.”

“Have an udderly wonderful birthday.” The card shows a picture of a cow.

If that made you laugh, please put down this column and go put on an apron.

Here are some of the funniest bumper stickers out there right now. I don’t know who voted. Shecky Greene? Red Buttons? Blue Moon Odom?

“Hang on to something.”

“Be nice to America or we’ll bring democracy to your country.”

“Fat people are hard to kidnap.”

“Don’t worry what people think. They don’t do it very often.”

“Hang up and drive.” I guess that’s not really meant to be funny, is it? It’s just a hopeless hope of mine.

“‘Ewe were meant for me,’ the sheepherder said.”

“My child is an honor student.” You knew there would be a backlash.

“My zombie ate your honor student.”

“My Brittany is smarter than your Brittany.”

There’s pith too. “If you’re not angry, you’re not paying attention.”

“The one who loves least controls the relationship.”

“Life can only be understood backwards, but it must be lived forwards.” Kierkegaard said that.

“When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.”

This beauty, attributed to Gandhi: “An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.”

“Many a man in love with a dimple makes a mistake of marrying the whole girl.”

If you know where this comes from, you’re one of us. “Vote for Pedro.”

I have a personalized plate and that’s it. I don’t tattoo my car or myself. There are no magnets or anything else stuck to my refrigerator. When I meet someone, one of the first things I do is look at their refrigerator. If I see holograms of Jesus or squirrels, I excuse myself right away.

If I see spell-out magnets I am gone. Letter magnets or word magnets are red flags. Post-its on a refrigerator annoy me.

Remember “Baby on Board” signs? I despised those. They resembled highway caution signs. I guess I was supposed to drive more cautiously when I was close to a baby in a car. I always drive exactly the same way, no matter who is in the next car. I drive the same way if there’s a baby in the next car, or if there’s a zombie eating an honor student in the next car.

Craig Marshall Smith is an artist, educator and Highlands Ranch resident. He can be reached at craigmarshallsmith@comcast.net


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