British Cars, the Fine Art of Conversation and the Preservation of Civilization

With the proliferation of what has been proclaimed the “Social Media,” it is readily apparent that as a civilization, we have lost the ability to engage in what past ages labeled “the fine art of Conversation.” Computers and cell phones (which unfortunately can no longer be regarded as passing fads) have managed to destroy our ability to communicate verbally. This is certainly the case with the younger generation. Reared on a diet of texting via Facebook and Twitter, these individuals ignore personal contact and stare at computer screens or glare at their cell phones, composing cryptic messages replete with obscure initials such as FYI, LOL or BBF. Their missives often conclude with ridiculous things called “emojis” Or with incomprehensible punctuation marks in the form of supposedly cute pictures, ;( or ;>).

As proper communication is one signifier of civilization, it becomes necessary to save these poor souls and offer them techniques by which they can start and maintain a meaningful conversation. Failure to do so has dire consequences for our society as we degenerate into a conglomeration of non-communicating zombies. The solution for the preservation of our entire civilization is British Cars.

The ancient, tried and true, method of commencing a personal verbal conversation is to make reference to the weather. “Is it hot enough for you?” or “Do you think it will rain?” These questions serve as useful opening gambits, but they risk becoming rather mundane and after a few obligatory replies, the result make be awkward silence. This is where the topic of British Cars comes to the rescue of civilization. It is easy for the conversationalist to move from preliminary comments on the weather to an understated assertion such as “I wish it would stop raining so I can take my car out.” Or “it is so nice I wish I was out in my car.” From here the conversation invariably progresses to “Oh, what type of car do you have?” After you answer this question the conversation moves comfortably on to the topic of older cars (British or otherwise) that they, their family or friends have owned or seen. The discussion then moves in various diverse directions. The peculiarities of British cars may be examined. (British cars all leak oil to mark their territory.) Lucas electrics might be considered. (If Lucas made guns, wars would not start either.) The expensive glories of Bentleys can be mentioned or an individual’s wish list of automobiles may be announced. Of course, as a loyal member of the Fraser Valley British Motor Club one can also engage in a bit of advertisement with mention of your attendance at the Classic Cars on Campus show or the Cultus Lake picnic. If one is lucky the conversation may even lead to the mention of the location of some barn find that is available for sale. This will in all likelihood lead to the comment on your part of “I would like to purchase that, but my conscience won’t let me.” (It is amazing how many collector car owners’ wives are named Conscience.)

In the end, a personal and lengthy face to face conversation will take place as British Cars take individuals away from computers and cell phones and encourage a refreshing dose of verbal communication. In the process British Cars continue to stand as the bulwark, the saviour and the guardian of civilization resisting the encroachment of the sterile and impersonal traits evidenced by today’s computer age and the vile proliferation of social media.