“What’s her name?” a well-meaning friend asked me.
I sighed. “Remember the television sitcom ‘Murphy Brown’?”
“With Candice Bergen.” My friend nodded. “Of course. She’s still one of my all-time TV heroes. So what’s that have to do with the name of your new car?”
I sighed again. “Just like Murphy’s baby, much to my chagrin, it turns out that my car’s a boy.”
“Seriously?” she asked. “Just because it’s blue?”
But no, the color had little, if anything, to do with it, and although everyone I knew had just assumed I’d get a red Mustang, I’d bought the first one that truly inspired my imagination, which just happened to be a Kona blue coupe with black racing stripes, enhanced air flow and exhaust systems, and about 355 horses under the hood.
I’d been driving the car about a week the first time someone asked its gender.
“Don’t know yet,” I replied. I was at the Great Day Café in Surfside, having lunch.
“Check under the hood,” said the affable and eavesdropping Steve from behind the counter where he was preparing our fabulous sandwiches.
Everyone laughed. Not to be outdone, I retorted with, “You mean I should check to see if there’s ‘junk in the trunk,’ and if there is, then it’s definitely a boy?”
I was pleased to note that the laughs were a wee bit bigger, although some people were undoubtedly covering their embarrassment at my lack of mouth filter.
Nevertheless, I feel a dominant rush of power whenever I get behind the wheel, and I enjoy the deep, rumbling growls when I start it up, so it’s a pretty safe bet it’s a male. I can tell by the way it takes my breath away whenever I am near it. No offense meant to anyone who leans otherwise, but only a guy could ever make my heart beat so wildly.
“So have you named HIM yet?” my friend asked again, several weeks later.
I nodded. “It took a few days of Internet research, and I had to check with the Department of Licensing to be sure it wasn’t a license plate already taken, but I finally settled on XANTHUS.”
“XANTHUS?” She shook her head. “Are you going to tell me, or are you going to make me Google it?”
I smiled. “In Greek mythology, Xanthus was one of Achilles’ two immortal horses.”
“Of course it was.” My friend laughed. “So now I suppose you two will become the new dynamic duo: Jan and Xan.”
Was there ever any doubt?