I Feel Safest of All
Inspired by my friend Kimberly, who I've only actually seen once since high school but whatever, I have elected to relate the following.
I tend to name my more important possessions, specifically vehicles and computers. My first car was named Peter. My first computer was named Tex. My bichin' Camaro that I drove back when Kimberly and I were still in school I christened Majje. The laptop I'm typing this on is named Obie2, after it's predecessor Obie, which was in turn named after the hyper-intelligent reality-altering supercomputer from Jack Chalker's Well of Souls novels.
Some people think this an odd habit but I feel that, if we're going to give names to boats, spaceships and B.B. King's guitar, then we should be open to naming just about anything.
The thing is, one can't just name a car the way one names a child. No, a car already has a name when it comes to you and you have to wait for the car to enlighten you as to how it would like to be addressed. It's a little like what T.S. Elliot had to say about cats, only without the help of Andrew Lloyd Webber. You have to take time to get to know the car and for it to acclimate to you. Only then will the car's name occur to you. It will simply pop into your head and you'll know that this is what the vehicle is meant to be called. This is the way it works for me, at least.
I purchased my current car from a friend. I went to see it for the first time in a garage with no lights so I only saw it in shadow. When I returned to test drive it, it was dusk. A few days later, when I committed to purchasing it and showed up with the money, the sun was already down. Having not owned a car for several years, I didn't have a parking space at my apartment and had to park in the side-lot, which was heavily shaded. Point being, I had already owned the car for a week before I saw it in full daylight and realized what color it was. I had thought it was navy blue but it is, in fact, a deep shade of purple, almost violet.
This realization led to the following train of thought. "My car is purple. Lou Reed was the lead singer of the band Deep Purple. My car's name is Reed!" And, I felt that little click in my head that told me I was correct. My car, indeed, wanted to be called "Reed."
I know what you're thinking. I can practically feel your disdain, familiar and comfortable as that is. "Thomas, Lou Reed was not the lead singer of Deep Purple. Lou Reed was the frontman for the Velvet Underground. You're a moron."
I am not, in point of fact, a moron. I know that Lou Reed was not in Deep Purple. I know that those two ensembles didn't produce even vaguely similar music. Simply put, I had a brain fart. An entirely incorrect thought passed through my head and I didn't notice. It happens to the best of us.
Unfortunately, Reed had declared his intentions to me and it was now too late to change up. I could have manufactured some line of reasoning about how purple is the best color for velvet or somesuch but what would that accomplish? And so, my car is Reed and Reed he ever shall be because I had a moment of cranial flatulence.
Such is serendipity.