Cars are wonderful machines. They take us places in style and comfort. They are entertaining. They boost our egos. They allow us to travel and explore new places. But for some people, their fondness and appreciation of cars is on a different level. These are the tell-tale signs you might be in love with your car.
You've named it
Every car you've ever had has been christened with a name. For example, Deirdre the Daewoo or Nora the Nova. And you talk about your car as if it's a person. "I can't meet you tonight. Nora's in having a service," you say. This becomes more difficult – and less likely - if you bought a Koenigsegg Agera RSR.
You wash it more than you wash yourself
Not implying you smell of course, but you think the phrase 'cleanliness is next to godliness' refers to how shiny your alloy wheels are, not the odour emanating from your armpits. Every Saturday, without fail, you enjoy washing your car and then spend hours polishing it with a wax that costs £200 and can only be bought at specialist retailers. If it rains, you get very angry.
You won't let other people drive it
"I see Dave's got a new car," you say. "He won't let anyone drive it." This is understandable if you haven't got a driving licence, or you're not insured to drive it. But most people's fully comprehensive insurance policies allow you to drive other cars with third-party cover. So it is time to have a little chat with Dave.
You won't eat in it
Obviously it isn't ideal to eat any of your three meals a day in your car. But sometimes you just have to. You're on your way to a meeting and you need to grab a sandwich. You're having a picnic, about to take a bite out of a delicious pork pie, and the rain has started. Most people would get in the car without worry for the stray crumb or wayward gherkin. Car lovers, though, will happily sacrifice themselves and their wellbeing for that of their vehicle.
You get angry at passenger sloppiness
You get mad when someone slams the door. You are twitchy if your mate puts their feet on the dash. Your first instruction to your passenger is to not touch the radio. You simply can't concentrate on the task of driving when people are in your car for fear of what harm they will cause it. In fact, you secretly wish you could afford to buy the £110,000 BAC Mono, the only single-seater car on sale in Britain.
You talk to it
"Well done," you say, tapping the steering wheel to congratulate your car on reaching your destination. Yet, the humble car is designed to do just that - it has not performed a miracle. At least when green-fingered individuals are talking to their beloved plants, they are conversing with a living, organic object. You, on the other hand, are not...
You park furthest away from other cars
In supermarket car parks, you park over in the corner, a five-minute hike from the entrance, to avoid other cars parking beside, in front or behind you. If necessary, you will even park haphazardly across several bays to avoid potential scrapes.
You spend too much money on your car
Apart from fuel, insurance, tax and repairs, you really shouldn't be spending any money on your car. Your car doesn't need any treats, accessories or paraphernalia. Buying it a blanket for winter protection is excessive, beaded seat covers are for minicabs only, and leather conditioner is going a bit too far.
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