Monday, 13 October 2014

A Nonsense of Numberplates

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As we are changing our address in December, it seems that we will be required to change our cars' number plates as the nearby coastal towns are not covered by the Cape Town municipality. There are certain number plates you just don't want to have and the one designated to our small town is :  CR (plus some numbers) .   The town's drivers are mostly retired people who have all the time in the world and proceed at the kind of leisurely pace in the middle of the road that is anathema to my husband and he will not be tarred with the same brush if he can help it. He has already convinced himself that CR stands for " DeCRepit person behind wheel."  Other number plates that have earned themselves unfavorable acronyms are:  CAW... belonging to a Cold And Wet place called George (further up the coast); there is the iniquitous CY - actually a part of Cape Town, whose drivers seem to drive so badly that everyone says, "See Why" whenever an offence is observed. Then there is CEM, which is, without any logic, the designation for a town called Hermanus, also coastal and similarly inhabited by retired people.  Yes, you've got it: it's dubbed the 'CEMetery' town. There are two other options: we could get a personalised number plate, horrifically expensive but you can have what you like if it fits on the plate and is not rude.  Ironically, the fewer letters/numbers you want, the more it costs. Or we could drive without any number plate (many arrogant drivers do): in this way the speed cameras are foiled and the offenders reason that the occasional fine for not displaying a number plate is well worth it as they can drive as fast as they like avoiding numerous speeding fines. We have until January to decide.

6 comments:

  1. In Pennsylvania we don't have anything that identifies us to a particular region, which I like. I have seen county designators on some other state plates and consider this something of a minor violation of privacy. I see little purpose in regional designators other than to build biases like you mentioned in your post and create a pain in the ass for people when they relocate. As far as vanity plates, anonymity is priceless and far cheaper. On the road with all of it hazards, inconsiderations, and hapless minor events that hothead can take offense at, one should seek to be non-memorable.

    Interesting that you have folks running with no plates to avoid speeding fines. Perhaps if they had a 90 day suspension of their license for operating without a plate, they may find it profitable to follow the law.

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    1. Won't ever happen - 90 -day suspension - but great idea.

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  2. Vanity plates in Washington state are cheap but you are limited to 7 letters/numbers/spaces. I had a Firebird, wanted to get FSTRNUR for it but never did.

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    1. I am beginning to think everything about America is better than anywhere else. Wish I could move there. Our latest scandal here is huge corruption in our Post Office - many workers not receiving their salaries last month but top brass awarding themselves huge bonuses/salary increases etc.

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    2. Be careful what you wish for. America has its pluses no doubt, but it also has its negatives. We have plenty of scandals. Where else could you spend billions on stained blue dress? We can't seem to do much except worry about who the hell is going to get elected and then find reasons to remove them from office and then we wonder why we can't get anything done. I would love to spend what we waste on political campaigns and congressional investigations in this country on education, infrastructure, health care, and basic research.

      What other country in the world seriously considers whether we should arm elementary school teachers to protect the students from mass shootings? Yeah we are something to envy!

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    3. We haven't had the type of mass school killings that you have experienced but we have many gangs in our schools and many innocents are shot every day. We have an average of 48 murders per 100 000 of our population in the Western Cape.

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