Subaru Secret Society: A Lighthearted Nonfiction Piece
I’ve lived in Moscow, Idaho for a few days and already I find myself counting Subarus as I drive and walk around town. This is a great change from life in Fargo, North Dakota, a place where Grayson, my silver 2009 Honda Accord had many twins and even more second cousins, and I don’t know what to make of the change. Before, in Fargo, which seemed like an unofficial headquarters for Honda owners, I memorized my car’s license plates to ensure that I would always be able to pick her out from a crowd of silver cars, especially silver Hondas. At times I even considered buying a whimsical bumper sticker or two—perhaps ones that read, “Not All Who Wander Are Lost” or “Dumbledore Lives” or “Books are my friends”—to give me an upper hand when trying to locate Grayson in a large parking lot.
Have you ever owned a Subaru?
These concerns appear over, and now I am left wondering if I have instead wandered into a town where there is an unspoken Subaru secret society. Silently, I wonder if they hold monthly meetings or have a complex, secret handshake, or, at the very least, get discounted car insurance because they are driving the “must have” car. The more logical side of me recognizes that this make of car is marketed more heavily to the inland Pacific Northwest, a part of the country known for environmentally-concerned individuals who pursue an active lifestyle. After all, a fair number of the Subarus in Moscow have bike racks attached to them, and I wouldn’t be surprised upon closer inspection to find camping gear housed in the hatchback area of many Outbacks in town.
I’ll confess that a small part of me is jealous not to have my own Outback or Forrester; that, even though I want to believe that I am a nonconformist who marches to the beat of her own Bluegrass Band, there is something in me that wants to blend in with the crowd. I want to confront every Subaru owner I find and ask them why they choose this particular make of car. I want to know if I am simply not in the know—in fact, if I am desperately in the dark by my increasing fondness and loyalty to my Honda—and what can be done to remedy this. Mostly, however, I find myself akin to a young child counting out-of-state license plates while on a cross-country road trip: I take note of all Subarus I see with a bewildered, amused, and delighted air. What else is there to do? There are too many around here to ignore. Welcome, I tell myself, to land of the Subarus.