The Power of Cute


As of today, and probably for the next week, this is my ride.  It’s a Fiat.  I haven’t driven a small car in decades.  I love it.  We turned Pepper-car in for repairs from the accident she sustained last summer.  Finally.  I saw it at the rental car lot and thought, I have to have it!

Just driving around town, the car gets a lot of attention.  It’s hard to hide something that resembles a mini sun on wheels.

“Nice banana car you got there, ” some random guy in a truck called to me as I walked back to collect it.  The car oozes cute.  The nobs and dials make it feel like a toy race car.  It has an optional stick shift function, too called “Sport”.  Which you need to turn off.  If you can figure that out, which Jonathon did.

Fiat is a funny word.  It’s also fun to say.  Try it.  Fee-ot.

It’s funny how cute things react with the female psyche.  I can’t speak for men, but I know for me, I want to take care of cute things.  You can see it when Ruby sees a cute stuffed animal like the monkey from the dentist’s office.  It looked like this

Mick Jagger

Okay, kinda like Mick.  If Mick were hairier and squattier.

What I’m trying to say is cute things, be they dolls, cars, people or animals, bring out a protective instinct in us.  I remember spotting cute babies everywhere when Jonathon and I were trying to start a family.  Babies drew me with an  irresistible force.  I had no thought beyond, “I can’t wait to hold one of my own!” Nothing about late night feedings registered.  I didn’t think of diaper changes.  I couldn’t comprehend life beyond the blissful baby stage. This is also why people take in stray kittens.  They’re fuzzy and helpless, big eyes looking at you to be their savior minion.

Cute carries an inherent problem.  It has a shelf life.  Cute wears thin.  Cute outgrows itself, generally.  Babies grow into toddlers who have tantrums.  Kittens grow into cats.  Cats have the ability to hack up hairballs weekly, like clockwork, onto your throw rugs.

I believe cute serves a purpose as part of divine design.  Babies arrive as cute so we’ll take care of them.  We want to protect and nurture them.  They can do nothing on their own but eat, sleep and poop.  We provide the food.  We put on new, clean diapers and provide a soft, quiet place to rest.  Babies get to grow up and learn to start taking care of themselves.  Cute provided an avenue to get there.

For now, I will enjoy the Banana-car.  I will drive it with pleasure and figure out what all the buttons do.  I might even attempt to parallel park, since I can see all the way around the car now.  But this cute coupe in my possession is temporary. If I owned it longer, the cuteness would most likely wear off as it aged. I might tire of the yellow or get bogged down in maintenance. Yet for now, it gets me where I need to go, in style.


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