A strange confluence of events occurred just now. I was grousing on my couch, watching TV and futzing with my laptop. I was grousing because of an e-mail I received. The writer was upset that my list of marketing mistake translations contained some untrue stories, also known as urban legends. Notably, the "Coke bites the wax tadpole" and the "Spanish No-going Chevy Nova" are allegedly untrue. Well, my page indicated the stories should be taken with a grain of salt, and these two items in particular also had links to background information describing their improbability. I guess I groused because the writer was right, and I could have had a big disclaimer on the item, rather than have the reader chase after the links. Certainly, the stories have been copied around the web so much that respectable magazines have mistakenly repeated the fables as truth, and I shouldn't be contributing to their legendary status.
While I groused, the TV was playing some history channel documentary about the search for Noah's Ark. Besides the usual stories of searches and treks up and around Mount Ararat, and the satellite photos of mysterious shadows or strange lightings that just might be a large boat sitting precariously on the side of Ararat, they had a good recounting of many flood stories that preceded the bible. Gilgamesh was just one example. Interestingly, the Gilgamesh story also has a boat filled with all the living things of the earth and a dove that is sent out to see if it is safe to leave the boat. It seems the great flood is a story that was known in the earliest times and was repeated and recorded over and over, with variations. The original urban legend!
At this point, my grousing turns to amusement. I am picturing a millenia from now in the year 3002. OK, stardate something or other. The failure of Chevrolet's Nova in Latin America has been repeated endlessly throughout the years on the internet, internet 2, internet 3, and the current Galactinet. The story no doubt has morphed a bit. About this point in time, some pseudo-historian, i.e. someone looking for fame and to make a name for himself, sets out on an expedition to find the famed demo room where Chevrolet abandoned all the Nova models it couldn't sell. Or perhaps some cartographer believes he knows where the cars are buried and seeks financing to dig them up.
My own version of the morphed story is that a particularly aggressive and determined American salesman takes a handful of Chevy Novas into Mexico. I'll call the salesman Noah. Maybe Noah takes one car of every color. Noah tries for several months to sell the cars. Of course, he doesn't speak Spanish, so he never realizes the car's name is "No Go". Being American, he doesn't consider his lack of language skills to be the reason he isn't selling any.
After a few months, he gives up on Mexico and takes his cars into Central America. Noah doesn't have any better luck there. Well, I said he was determined, so after a few more months, he continues his effort to sell the cars as he proceeds further south. Thru the Amazon jungle and up and down the Andes, he keeps trying and can't make a sale. Finally, he gets to Tierra del Fuego. At this point, he sells one car to an American manager of a certain famous rent-a-car company stationed there. The salesman decides he can live comfortably on the profits right where he is, so he settles down and gets married and lives happily ever after. The remaining cars are rumored to still be there, in pristine condition, although buried in layers of dirt, thanks to the 1000 years that have passed.
Oh wait! Newsflash just coming in on the Galactinet. An astronomer stationed on Jupiter, just happened to be looking at Tierra del Fuego and believes he sees the outline in a nearby mountain of a half-dozen 1975 Chevy Novas... They could be the X- bodys or the K-cars, the very same makes that Noah allegedly brought there. An expedition is being formed...
Copyright © 2002 Tex Texin. All rights reserved.