Do you ever see a car with such interesting bumper stickers that you want to follow it just to meet the driver? Sometimes I do but I never follow it because, well, that’s more than a little creepy, and also I sometimes see a car whose stickers really pique my interest while I’m on the bus and I’ve learned that telling a bus driver “Follow that car!” gets me some funny looks, but that’s another story. It’s less often that I’m intrigued by a vanity license plate–most of them just confuse me and I end up following the car around because I’m trying to figure out the meaning, which is more than a little creepy.
In Australia now they’ve actually started offering vanity plates that include emojis and this is an exciting, innovative idea that I’m pretty sure was conceived by someone who’d been bitten by a trapdoor spider or was otherwise mentally impaired because I can’t imagine how this was a good idea. It’s even worse than when they introduced vanity plates in Germany, and if you know anything about German you know the resulting plates had to be at least four feet across because German isn’t a language that lends itself to abbreviations, or lends itself to anything else. Some German words run the whole length of the alphabet and they rarely use a colon because the language has been largely disemvowelled, but that’s another story. It’s ironic too that Germany has the Autobahn with no speed limit even though you can’t go twenty miles without hitting a small town or castle, and believe me, you do not want to be going full speed when you hit a castle. Australia, on the other hand, has its east coast with Brisbane and Sydney, and then there’s about three million miles of absolutely nothing all the way to the west coast and Perth, although, believe me, you do not want to be going full speed when you hit Uluru. And it doesn’t help that Australia only pretends to be an English-speaking country, a place where you don’t grin–you “pull out your teethy-weeths”, where a sheep is known as a “jumbuck”, and where the peach, a popular euphemistic emoji, is known as a “fuzzy-wuzzy”, and the eggplant, another popular emoji for a certain body part, is known as a “Roman honkwanger”, which, let’s face it, already sounds like a euphemism.
That’s why I predict that emojis on license plates will be a short-lived phenomenon, but also they’re called “vanity plates” for a reason. Ecclesiastes tells us there is a time and a place for all things but also that all is vanity, that all things will pass in time, although “Ecclesiastes” is really hard to fit on a license plate, except in Germany.