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Japan Technology: the Honda Accords that wont quit

Japan Technology: the Honda Accords that wont quit

Jul 22, 2012

There’s not much left of 1993.  My Jurassic Park VHS tape is buried in cobwebs, I can’t find my Mossimo shirt, and my old Intel 486DX2  computer is probably polluting the water supply of a 3rd world country.

19 years ago reading a book actually involved a book, and checking into a flight required carbon-paper booklets.

19 years ago the internet consisted mainly of screaming modems, busy signals, and watching pictures rendered line by line in a Netscape 2.x browser. In 1993,  when I did a 6th grade project on Penguins, I trudged to the Brantford Public LIbrary, copied 4 different encyclopedias, and then typed it up on my sister’s Brother electric typewriter.  Oh, the humanity. Can you imagine the kind of intergalactic backwater our world must have been back then?

19 years is a long time,  and almost all traces of its glory have disappeared. Almost.

Microsoft AutoCollage - making it rain since 2008

While David Koresh, Windows 3.1,  and Yassar Arafat are but distant memories , the 4th generation Honda Accord, produced from 1990-1993, still prowls the streets of this country. Be it the avenues of Manhattan, to the cracked out corners of Seattle, from sea-to-shining-sea, the early 1990s vintage of Honda Accord is still a fixture of our carscape.

I’m still a bit angry about Pearl Habor, and I hated Karate Kid Part II.  I’m a tiny bit of a Japan hater. But what new devilry did those Japanese engineers use to build these cars?  The 4th generation Accords don’t merely live-on, they ripen with age. Remember those weird motorized seat belts of the early 1990s? Yeah the Accord has those. Its horn has that nasal, high-pitched yelp that immediately brings Pat Morita to mind. Make no mistake, the 1993 Honda Accords on the road are nothing like the 3-tone color, ’93 Monte Carlo sitting in your step dad’s driveway. When it comes to aging, the Accord does it more like Bill Clinton than Ruth Ginsburg.

Beginning at my 10th birthday up through my now (almost) 30th, I’ve grown up with these Honda Accords.  If you looked through my Mom’s photo album of me,  you’ll find numerous 93 Honda Accords lurking in the background, serving as silent observers of my youth.

Like the Desmond Tutu Center on 10th Avenue, the Honda Accord haunts me. No matter the year on my Timex Indiglo, everytime I walk out my door, I seem to bump right into one.

Maybe this Japan Technology thing is real, and those cats at Uniqlo really are onto something? The 1993 Honda Accords are like the Voyager spacecraft, Opportunity rover, and B-52 bomber, they just keep on trucking long past the expiry date. Its the closest thing we have to a real life Energizer Bunny, and while the Bunny long stopped beating its drum across the airwaves, the Honda Accord just keeps going and going and going…and going.

(I made the collage from pictures of Accords I’ve been taking over just the last 5 days. Heck, as I was typing up this article, one pulled right up to the front of the cafe!)

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