Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
This comic refers to a popular form of bumper sticker that follows the template "my other car is a ____". Sometimes the blank is a fancy vehicle like a Porsche or a Ferrari; sometimes it's an even more expensive form of transportation like a "yacht" or "private jet", or even something in fiction (like a "TARDIS").
The premise was to jokingly imply that someone driving in a less fancy vehicle was wealthier than they looked, as they could afford a fancy car (they simply chose to drive the clunker that day). The designer of the first stickers might even have intended them for serious use by wealthy drivers. The form of sticker ultimately became so well known that the phrase entered the pop-culture lexicon.
Due to their popularity, these stickers also have been parodied in various ways, like the one Randall has invented here. Randall's sticker is a more "honest" sticker that admits "this IS my other car"; in other words, this is the nicer of the two cars.
This sticker could probably be used on an expensive car to mirror the traditional sticker's use on a cheaper car. However, the car in the strip is a Mitsubishi, which is not a particularly expensive brand. Thus it appears that Randall is using the sticker for contrasting purposes: while others would drive a modest car but joke that they have a really nice one at home, Randall's car is modest, and, as he noted in the title text, his other one is much worse than this one.
It's also possible that this is a play on meta-levels; by definition, the car that you're driving can't be your other car, as it's this.
- [The back of a blue Mitsubishi with a spoiler is shown.]
- Bumper sticker: This IS my other car.
add a comment! ⋅ add a topic (use sparingly)! ⋅ refresh comments!
Some comedian (Google is failing to tell me who) once claimed to have seen a bumper sticker that read "My other car is a Rolls Royce"...... on a Rolls Royce. -- mwburden 126.96.36.199 21:37, 13 December 2012 (UTC)
This may kill some of the parody, but the audacious spoiler suggests that this may be a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution (often referred to as simply an "Evo"). While this isn't a particularly fancy car—indeed the base Lancer model could be considered somewhat of an "econobox", on par with a Honda Civic or Toyota Tercel—the Evo trim level can be considered fairly valuable, particularly by performance enthusiasts. Comparing the 2013 models, the Evo trim has roughly twice the horsepower as the base model (291 hp vs. 148 hp), and its base price is more than twice as high (nearly $35,000 US vs. $16,000). The Evo has enhanced handling, transmission, and brakes, and is a favorite among club racers.
On the other hand, there are some who consider the Evo a "toy" car, little more than a go-kart with a stereo. This is especially applicable to the older generations of the mark, as they were less refined than more recent ones, focusing primarily on performance and eschewing creature comforts or any other hallmarks of perceived quality. The over-sized, garish spoiler only serves to enforce the "childish", low-class image (of note is that Mitsubishi seems to have abandoned the ridiculous spoiler for the latest model, offering comparatively conservative ones instead). Having driven one of the older models, I can attest to how unrefined and go-kart-like they are. My opinion is that it would be great fun to throw a car like that around the track on the weekends, but my ass couldn't handle driving one on a daily basis.
So for me, that bumper sticker could actually make sense. It could be my "other" car, one that I only used on track days. Daddy (talk) 05:22, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
I've discussed the issues with the image here. Mark Hurd (talk) 09:00, 21 April 2013 (UTC)
- I fixed the image by resaving it in an image editing application. I, too, am perplexed why the original wouldn't display properly. The weird orientation doesn't seem to explain why it would fail to display at all. Perhaps it has something to do with the image being a link (e.g., the browser prepares a link area that's 372 x 300, then tries to fill it with an image that renders to 300 x 372 instead, and pukes). Regardless, it's easier to fix the image than to fix the browser. Daddy (talk) 04:35, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
- Yes, your upload allowed the wiki to display the file without attempting to thumbnail it. It's definitely a wiki problem, not a browser issue, as the image worked correctly when I got it to not use the thumbnail version, which still don't work. Mark Hurd (talk) 11:09, 22 April 2013 (UTC)
You forgot a few issues with the image: The white balance for one; the focus is a bit too close; and the chromatic aberration suggests you bought your camera because it had "the most megapixels" -1014 PotatoGod (talk) 04:15, 7 August 2017 (UTC)
My other car is an honor student. Alpha (talk) 05:03, 15 September 2013 (UTC)
For me this means "I don't have any other car" and this one is better than nothing. User:Loge Reborn
I feel like adding that the various Mitsubishi cars that can be done to the spec that a spoiler and those lines are appropriate (I've seen not just the Evolution, but also the Magna and the Magna's replacement, the 380, both of which are out of production) can be done much further, potentially going toe to toe with exotics. Whilst the car is cheap, if you bolt on enough parts (not cheap, btw), a la midnight club or NFS Underground, they can be beasts. Whilst not as prestigious or luxurious as the European exotics, they can match them for performance (not the stupidly rare top-end ones) and sometimes cost. Also, that car is yours. You have customised it. You don't get that in an exotic much... 188.8.131.52 07:06, 26 September 2015 (UTC)
In my other world, that is my other car.  Zorlax the Mighty'); DROP TABLE users;-- (talk) 18:42, 11 August 2016 (UTC)
SOMEBODY has removed every instance of the word "car" from the explanation. 184.108.40.206 23:43, 12 March 2017 (UTC)
- ...and nearly ten years later it was replaced by My other vehicle explored Pluto--Dgbrt (talk) 21:47, 13 March 2017 (UTC)