This is currently my favourite bus shelter poster advertisement. âWhatâs your favourite colour?â it asks, with a row of, letâs face it, wussy-coloured Nissan Micras depicted. The word âMicraâ is in aqua; the first Micra is that colour. The next is a kind of pink that I guess would be somewhere between mauve and what apparently is called âopera mauveâ, followed by an even wussier shade that seems to be between grey and light mauve. Only the blue and red cars exist in strong colours. And what a shade of red. Itâs lipstick red.
So whatâs this ad actually communicating?
Is it saying, âour cars come in great colours to mix and match with your accessories; just like make-upâ? Maybe itâs an attempt to make a pissy little car seem trendy.
But the pissy little car is a positive feature, in this modern, globally warming world in dire need of reduced carbon footprints. I assume theyâre pissy little cars â the model name is âMicraâ, after all. Like âMicroâ, only more effeminate.
So is this a chickâs car? Is that why itâs being advertised as lipstick?
Well yes, thatâs probably part of it. But look at the shade of lipstick: itâs a hot, provocative shade. As if to say, it might be a little car, it might be a sensible car, but itâs not a âgirl-next-doorâ car. Itâs a âracyâ car; itâs a âsaucyâ car; a âsexyâ car that âgoes off like a firecrackerâ; a car that âbangs like a dunny door in a windstormâ. Or words to that effect.
But thereâs another layer to this ad.
Sports cars have long been looked upon as phallic symbols, penis substitutesâ¦. Thereâs always been that connection between âfast women and hot carsâ. And thereâs no mistaking the lipstick as a phallic symbol in this ad.
So what if you are an environmentally aware male driver, opting for a smaller car? Or a driver who canât afford or canât handle a bigger, stronger, environmentally inconsiderate car? This is what the ad is saying to you:
âThereâs no need to feel totally emasculated by having a tiny dick-car. Your car is still phallic because it equals lipstick. So, even if youâre so clever that you can no longer kid yourself about the big dick-carâs damage to the earth, or that your car will get you laid, even if you wonât be burning much rubber (so to speak) this here micrapenis car will still get you the odd spot ofâ¦ lip serviceâ¦.â
- My friend Cristina writes, âThis is definitely a chick car â one of its major selling points is
that it has a spare shoe compartment under the passenger seatâ¦â. Since I donât actually drive, I donât know stuff like that exists. Instead, I get annoyed by stupid posters at bus stops.