Rick Seitz: Vehicular Vandalism – What’s The Point?

I’ve never understood the appeal of vandalizing someone else’s possessions, so you can imagine my shock when I woke up to not one or two, but a total of eight key scratches on my daily driver

When I was a kid, I was taught not only to respect other people and their property, but if I had an issue with somebody that I should always approach them directly. In this era of email, Facebook, and other forms of social networking, I think people have lost touch with this concept now more than ever, and tend to hide behind their computer monitor or in the shadows of darkness instead of having to deal with a face to face encounter. Whether this is because the internet has made cowards out of ordinary people or because individuals usually associate others with the cars that they drive is still a complete mystery to me.

I’ve never understood the appeal of vandalizing someone else’s possessions, so you can imagine my shock when I woke up to not one or two, but a total of eight key scratches on my daily driven CTS-V one morning about two weeks ago. The culprit even went as far as carving a huge “X” onto one of my doors. Lovely. Unfortunately, it wasn’t locked in my garage but parked in a lit carport at my girlfriend’s apartment complex. Sadly, there were no witnesses and there are no operational cameras anywhere. All I have is an idea of who could have done it and the time-frame (between midnight and 8:30am).

X Marks The Spot...

The “artist” managed to show off his/her skills on three of the four doors, both quarter panels, the fuel door, and the trunk lid in two different places. Now while I won’t get too personal with the specifics on whom I think did it and why, there was no denying the fact that it was a direct attack on my car and yours truly. After seeing the car in person or looking at the pictures, anybody with half a brain can realize that.

Once I did the obligatory police report and filed a claim with my insurance company, I’ve decided to go one better and get the whole car repainted in its factory black hue. I’m probably tossing on a Specter Works rear spoiler and powder coating the wheels black too, along with repairing any dings and other noticeable flaws. I figured I may as well make the best of a bad situation and turn lemons into lemonade -all of that.

Even Corvette owners aren't safe from vandalism Image: CorvetteForums.com

In the meantime, I’ve been stuck driving my ’87 Grand National when it’s not raining (which it does most of the time in Ohio) or borrowing my dad’s ’03 Malibu when it is. So now that I’m relying on one of my pride and joys for daily transport while my Cadillac is stuck in Body Shop Hell, I’m left wondering what it is about people who choose to destroy somebody’s car rather than confront them in person. Most people that know me know how much I love my cars, so would this be an attack on something I care about most, or is it because cars are usually considered to be an extension of ourselves and/or our personalities?

Obviously, I’m not the first person in history to have their car vandalized in some way, nor will I be the last, but why is our automobiles the target of revenge for a lot of people? It isn’t just scratching keys on the paint surface either; slashing tires, sugaring tanks, egging (which ruins the paint by the way), smashing out windows, etc. all fall under that category too. In some cases, it could be envy or jealousy of owning that particular item, or like I said before, maybe it’s because we are usually associated with the cars we drive.

How scary would it be to see this in the sidewall of your 5th-Gen Camaro? Image: Camaro5.com

Throw in the fact that the car is a mobile vessel that we rely upon to take us from place to place, and once said vandalism has been sought out, then it becomes known to the general public that the driver clearly has done something to piss somebody off. But it could be some people just don’t realize the bond that car enthusiasts have with their rides. When someone attacks our cars, it’s almost as bad as them hurting our children or sleeping with our significant other. It’s just an unwritten rule that you don’t break, a line you don’t cross. Between men, we call this guy code and you just know not to take it there.

I’ve been without my Caddy for over a week now, and to be honest, I feel totally naked without it. It’s five years old, and though I’ve only owned it for the last two, I already miss it. I haven’t felt a bond that strong with a daily driver since my WS6 was retired from that role six years ago, and it sucks. I stopped by the body shop to visit it today, but they haven’t even started working on it yet. I was half-tempted to take it back and leave my dad’s beater Malibu there until the shop was actually ready for it, but I didn’t bother.

In the short time that I’ve owned the V, I’ve clocked 45,000 miles on it, and I’d do it all over again. I traveled all over the East Coast with it, took it to Chicago, NYC a few times, drove it on the Hot Rod Power Tour last summer (long hauler, baby!), and even hit up Holley’s Inaugural LS Fest in Bowling Green, Kentucky. It may have even been responsible for a speeding ticket or two. With a total of almost 96k miles showing on the ticker, it has never left me stranded anywhere, and the only time it came close was in my own driveway when the starter went caput. You need to thank GM’s reliability of the LS2 for that.

When I told friends and members of my family what had happened, all were sympathetic, and some were just as infuriated as I initially was. Even my grandpa who turned 81 this year (probably the nicest guy you’ll ever meet) told me I should find out who did it and “take care of him.” But where would that get me, besides prison? Nah, I believe in Karma and it is true what they say about “her.” That person will get theirs eventually, if they haven’t already, and soon my Cadillac will be flaunting a fresh coat of Raven Black paint, and a new look overall. Maybe once I find the person who did it, I should thank them?

Keep Rollin’


About the author

Rick Seitz

Being into cars at a very early age, Rick has always preferred GM performance cars, and today's LS series engines just sealed the deal. When he's not busy running errands around town in his CTS-V, you can find him in the garage wrenching on his WS6 Trans Am, or at the local cruise spots in his Grand National.
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