Hooniverse Asks- What Generally Derided Element of Car Culture Are You Embarrassed to Admit Intrigues You?


Twinkies are the devil’s spawn. You know that those greasy little loaves are bad for you, and that they could potentially outlive you. You also know that they are not a food that demonstrates any level of cultural attainment at all. And yet, you still want to eat them. Mmmm, wasn’t that good now?

There are aspects of car culture that are the equivalent of Twinkies. There’s demolition derby, drifting, mud bogging, and – God help us all – the stance sub-culture. All of these have their proponents, although typically they are each seen as a less esteemed element of the overall car enthusiast lifestyle, as well as its ongoing agronomy. But, that doesn’t mean of course that you might not find one or more aspects to be without attraction.

Is that the case? Do you find the lure of one of the less mainstream, or perhaps even derided, sub-cultures of the automobile  lifestyle to be compelling? If so, which calls to you the loudest? Come on now, you’re amongst friends here, go ahead and unburden yourself, What generally pilloried element of car culture are you ashamed to admit you kind of like?

Image source: slaati


  1. God help me, I kind of like the stance stuff. I would love to mildly stance my 635 but there's no way I would ever do it. If it's done right and you stay away from the crazy camber aspect it looks really, really cool on some of the Euro cars from the late 70s and 80s.

    1. This. I want to hate the stance movement, I really do, since I in general am much more of a function over form type of person. But dammit if some of the cars on StanceWorks and Cannibeat don't look great to me.

  2. I actually like demolition derby and think that it should be more widespread as a means of "safely" blowing off steam in a semi-controlled environment. Stance can also be cool when done right.
    I would like to say that while some aspects of automotive culture may not appeal to every one of us, we should at least respect them. Cars have long been a vehicle not just of transportation but of self-expression. Some like to paint murals on their back windows while others cover their car in wind-up lobsters. There's no "right" or "wrong", just preference. It's art in one of its most basic forms.

    1. "safely blowing off steam. . ."
      Funny, since most demo derby cars are disabled by punctured radiators.

          1. I don't know who Dr. Harrell is unless you're referring to the one I had as a teacher in high school. Since that's likely…but anyway I accept your offer.

      1. Now I just have to figure out how to get the combine in my brother's yard all the way to Lind…

  3. I know it isn't a "real motorsport", but drifting is just so cool you can't help but love watching it. I've been to several Formula Drift events just for the spectacle.
    I also must admit that my car is mildly stanced. No crazy camber though, and my ride height is reasonable.

  4. I like to think I can appreciate at least some aspects of all automotive cultures. For example, I gotta give credit to donks for resurrecting unloved American iron that was never meant to go fast anyway.
    But I don't think there is one culture that I can claim to like more than the rest, unless LeMons is embarrassing.

    1. That's the thing, the reason I like Donks. I love the cars that people Donk so I have no issues with seeing them cleaned up and fixed. Maybe it will keep a clean G-body for me in a few years.

  5. For me it's mudding.
    A lot of people I know seem to think the idea of playing in mud is immature, stupid, too redneck-ish, or not as cool as showing off your car's panel fitment issues with ridiculous amounts of bass, but I think it looks like a lot of fun. I wouldn't even need a truck with a crazy amount of lift to have a good time. Hell, I wouldn't even need a truck to have a good time.

  6. If a car is dorky, thrifty, and generally unloved by so-called "car guys,' I'm way more prone to get seriously defensive of it. Smart Fortwo? Love them, spend a fair amount of seat time in one. Prius? I bid on one once. I adore the Nissan Leaf, and my problems with the Mitsubishi iMiev stem from it being a Mitsubishi, not what powers it.

      1. I worked the concession stand at a monster truck show recently (HS band fundraiser) and my revelation then was that monster truck 'racing' is to motor sports as 'professional' wrestling is to actual sports.
        A side note: I went to HS with Charlie Pauken (not that I knew him well), a long time Monster Truck driver now working for the Grave Digger team. He started back in the late 80s when they were still based on production trucks driving a truck named Excalibur that he and his brother built, I believe. I remember seeing Excalibur on it's small travel tires behind their house.

        1. Neat. I drove past the Diggers Dungeon in N Carolina years ago and now kick myself for not having time to stop.

  7. I'll admit, I'm intrigued by the Stance movement, enough that I regularly visit Stanceworks. The issue is, within the general car culture community, only the worse of the worse gets attention when it comes to really niche stuff like Stance. Stancework cultivates only the best, and a lot of the cars look incredibly good. Showcar-worthy.
    Try to think of it like an extension of the low-rider movement, only less emphasis on hydraulics, pinstripes and chrome. It's mostly aesthetic, but a couple of stance rigs are built with drifting in mind, since that's where the look originated.
    <img src="http://cdn.stanceworks.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/10/slammed-chevrolet-pickup.jpg"&gt;
    This is an example of what I would realistically do, if I were inclined. A low-rider one ton is something I've seen only a couple times before and I like it quite a lot. It'd be easier to get into and out of than a standard truck, at the least.

    1. Explain to me again why you want your truck to look like it has broken suspension parts.

      1. The truck is still a truck. You just don't have to climb into it or have to lift crap as high to get it into the bed. (I say this as someone who has to — by myself — get a heavy 125 gallon water tank into a 4×4 Silverado 2500 during the summer to water trees on a 40 acre property.) Rigs like the one above usually use airbag suspension systems, so payload, towing and comfort aren't affected too greatly, according to their owners.
        Most guys who have rigs like this often use them as tow vehicles, it should be noted. Lowered trucks like these usually require you to cut a section out of the bed to fit the rear differential. Still, you can compensate for this with a custom rack if you regularly haul 4×8 sheets of whatever.

    2. I see where you're coming from; StanceWorks always presents their cars in the best light possible. They have the nicest pictures, great typography in the logo, the subject (the car) is always well-represented and the cars themselves are different and very interesting.
      However, I don't appreciate the car so much as I do the whole picture; everything, the filters, the logo, composition, it's all integral to the beauty of it. I mean, if I come across that truck in a Wal-Mart parking lot on a cloudy day I imagine I'd be much less impressed.

      1. Well, yeah, the photos are nice, and thats about it.
        But EVERYTHING will look good if photographed with a pro DSLR and after it spends 3 hours in PS and Lightroom.
        If someone photographed this truck with a cameraphone next to a dumpster behind a Chinese restaurant on a rainy day, everyone would mock it.

    3. My problem with stance is that it looks like the suspension is broken. A good lowrider looks intentional.

      1. I don't like huge camber angles either. As i see it the point of "stance" is to find the best possible stance/posture(obviously), so it's pretty much about finding the best combination of wheel, tyre, and lowering. Of course this is very subjective.. And some people seem to like the "broken suspension" look. Plenty of cars on say Stance Works with normal camber angles.

    4. Sweet looking truck,,, I have a 1993 f350 4 door with a 460 big block , fith wheel, hoping to build it like the pic above me

  8. Tractor style truck pulls. Although I grew up in a very rural area I have always tried to separate myself from the "redneck" stereotype. That being said just like the tractor pull guys are pushing huge motors to absolutely unbelievable horsepower numbers the truck pull guys definitely seem to have then engine building thing down. At the end of the day who doesn't love the sound of monster V-8's screaming or large turbos spooling up on a big diesel.

        1. Hell, even the guys who ride cafe racers deride 90% of the other cafe racers out there.
          It's actually very similar to the Stanceworks forum thread I linked to in my reply to Jeff a couple of comments down.

          1. Ugh. I followed your link and was glad not to be part of that culture. I guess a cafe bike isn't in my future, even though I fell in love with the Suzuki thumper that my neighbor built.

  9. I actually own a 1977 Corvette. Lots of people seem to enjoy hating on late 1970s Corvettes.
    I got the car in 1990, when it was just a 13 year old Corvette. Wish I could get a 2000 Corvette today.

  10. I'm not embarrassed to admit that I find donks intriguing. I love me some lowriders. I'd totally rock a lowered full-sized pickup truck.
    For some reason, I can't get behind Stance though… Oh, and whatever it was MkIII VW owners were doing before Stance arrived.

    1. Wait for someone to put a 59/50 decal on the hood. I'll admit, part of me wants a drift-prepped Silvia.

      1. This is from a Canadian dealer, this was a gussied-up version of the 2107 that sold in Canada as the Dennis Signet. Doubt they're BBS, as that would have made the price of the car ridick at the time.

    1. There's nothing to be ashamed of in liking high level pulling. They're engine technology is insane, and easily appreciable. Where else are you going to see diesels running multiple hundreds of pounds of boost, or multi-Allison engined vehicles?

    2. This looks like something a three year old would build with LEGO, giggle, and throw away. Now who has the last giggle?

    1. Wait…are you implying that fishnet stockings are derided?

          1. Now that's a candidate for what my mind will wander to when I go to bed tonight. How do I unsee that?

      1. That's just stuff they happened to have in the bed when they had the truck lifted. They haven't been able to get into the bed of the truck since to remove it…

      1. Likewise. And I'd definitely own any beat-to-shit truck, lifted, ugly steel wheels, covered in mud. It's the shiny full-sizers that don't get used that bother me.

        1. That was actually about 500% more intense than all the deliberate smash-em-ups I've seen. They were actually racing, not finding an excuse to t-bone a beater that nobody cared about wrecking anyway.

  11. Diesel 'Bro" trucks. With four-wheel-drive and that much tire, why do so many end up in the ditch?

    1. BZZZZZ!
      "That would be arrogant bravado, Bert."
      "Oh, I'm sorry; the correct answer was 'Miller Genuine Draft.'
      …No, wait. Judges? Yes! They'll accept that!"

    2. What else could possibly happen when they have a tire blowout on the freeway and one corner of the truck suddenly drops two feet?

  12. <img src="http://www.rogue-cavern.net/pics/8ball_burnout.jpg&quot; width="600">
    High powered FWDs. Do they make any sense? No. Are they as fast as most AWDs with half the power? No. Do they constantly try to kill you by torquesteering you off a bridge. Yes. Are they incredibly fun? Damn right they are. Nothing induces quite as many giggles as breaking traction at 70 mph as the front wheels madly claw for traction.

    1. Well, don't like them. At all. Not even a little bit. I spit on those *@#$ wrong-wheel-drive cars. In fact, I ****ing HATE FWD cars, just the rest of the average joes around here. I'm just a regular, right-thinking, RWD-lovin' real driver, just like all the other normal car guys.
      A totally unrelated question: You know that theory that guys who are totally homophobic are supposedly masking unspoken insecurities about their sexuality…you think there's any truth to that?

      1. I'd advise fitting a rollbar before rolling over that small thing though, or the roof might cave in…

  13. This'll prolly get me down voted back to 50p- but I liked Monster Garage and whatever else junk Jesse James was working on.
    He is a jackass and contradicts himself often. I did like his work ethic when he actually gave a crap.

    1. I'll just file this here then! I watch a lot of automotive TV. Powerblock disappeared though so I can't load a bowl full of sugary cereal on saturday mornings anymore. I liked Jesse James' stuff too.
      A big one is overhaulin'. Specifically because of Chip Foose. The guy churns out so much stuff and I don't really like it, but it's clear that he likes what he does. Makes a big difference.

    1. The perception of people being "slotcar-ists," as an identity or part of a subculture seems to be more of a "thing" in the UK than in the USA.

  14. For what it's worth, twinkies go bad in about 2 months. You can still eat them, but they're no longer…fresh.
    I have a thing for unloved malaise era vehicles, like most here.

    1. I thought this was about things that are generally derided, not things that are generally thought of as five galaxies beyond awesome.

    2. How can people stay intoxicated long enough to get this done? And it would be really impressive if he unfolds that giant underbite and turns it into one plush, furry bed. Campers!

  15. Most of my friends think trains are the future, can't understand why anyone would live in a place that requires you to own a car, and won't easily open up to how fun it can be to drive something awesome. So what am I embarrassed to admit? That I'm a car guy.
    Thank scientists for the internet then. I still talk about cars all the time though and just hope that the whole "cars are evil"-concept will dry out.

    1. Me too…Give me a DenimMachine Econoline…or any Dodge Tradesman or Chevy Vandura…

  16. I like tractor pulls and really need to visit the local combine demolition derby. Other than that I really want to build a Shakotan/Bosozoku style car with the crazy exhaust and cow catcher airdam wth a big oil cooler on it.

  17. might be a subset of herrafrush and "stance" but i am really a fan of the "VIP" cars
    take older luxury cars, herrafrush stance them, tint the windows, park them in expensive-looking places and put pictures on stanceworks. the paint is always immaculate and the cars always spotless.
    they really look sharp, with a dose of swagger. like a pitch-black double-breasted suit with a skinny black tie and a bright white shirt, but on four wheels.
    <img src="http://motormavens.com/emAlbum/albums/Allen%20Chu/Feature%20Cars/Justin%20Wu%20Infiniti%20M35/2EER6332_Justin_Wu_infiniti_M35_vip_11.jpg"&gt;
    i don't know maybe i'm a huge ricer but i think they're cool. probably cost a ton to build, too.

      1. yeah i wish i could have found some better pictures out there but for some reason all i'm finding is the newer model. nothing against it, but it has nowhere near the gangster appeal of the m45.

  18. I don't know you guys anymore. 😛
    Donks are one of my most hated things in this world, as well as lowered trucks. I guess I'll survive somehow.

  19. I'll say it… there are very few donks I like. What's odd, however, is how many directly related vehicular categories I adore. Lowriders, for instance, probably because they're safer and rarely have stupid themes. Weird cars lifted for rallying or set on 4wd pickup frames with big ol' mud tires, so long as the wheelbases are near-identical. Even old classics that don't require sketchtastic lifts to fit larger wheels, like the Buick posted above. It's just the lifted-to-the-sky examples covered in unpaid advertising that cause me to shake my head.
    Oh, and minitrucks are cool too, but that's a given, right?

  20. I guess if I had to pick onecontroversial and/or unpopular facet of the car world, it would be rat rods. Yes, they're way past played-out and yes, their builders often put as much money and effort into creating "fauxtina" as they do normal paint and bodywork. But dammit, I just love the idea of driving a cool old car with good performance and not having to worry about where I park it or spray-on-waxing it every half hour.
    Also, this:
    <img src="http://ekhatch.files.wordpress.com/2009/08/rat-rod-vw-06.jpg&quot; />

    1. Thank you for giving my unhealthy love of all things Brougham a name. I am afraid I have an incurable case of Broughamania.

  21. 1. "Automatic Stickshift" VW Beetles and Ghias. Part of this being that in the process of identifying as a fan of autostick cars, you are basically outing yourself as someone who doesn't drive manuals, or at least you will be perceived that way (for me, the former, let's get that out of the way).
    2. Banger racing. Makes demo derby seem so lame. Probably tells us a lot about the Brit culture. [youtube SVloL0jIYhc http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SVloL0jIYhc youtube]

    1. Hey, don't forget that both Porsche and NSU also used the automatic stick shift — the latter on the Ro80, no less. You can always win back some points with a Ro80.*
      * I actually have no idea if this is true.

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