It has come to my attention, via screams from the closet where my intern has trapped himself for over a week, that I haven’t done an Automotive Would You Rather since April. Holy crap! That’s miserable – all of you must be just desperate for Would You Rather content, probably to the point of seizing strangers’ arms in grocery stores and begging them to give you difficult and wildly improbably fictional automotive scenarios to pick from. I get that. Well, you can unhand those poor people, because I’m here to help. So, lotion those brains up good and get ready for some satisfying conundrums!
SCENARIO ONE: Terrified Lincoln
You’re listening to some news on your phone as you’re making a salad for dinner. In the process, as you’re chopping leeks and venison and balsa wood and cucumbers for your salad, you hear a story about how Microsoft, of all entities, has created quantum quasiparticles called Majorana zero which will have applications for quantum computing. As the report is being broadcast, the ingredients you happen to be mixing in your salad are reacting with the atoms and quarks in the surrounding atmosphere and are being arranged by the very mention of these quantum quasiparticles via the EM radiation of the data stream to your phone, such that your salad is causing the Majorana zero quasiparticles to be generated, and those quasiparticles are getting quantum-entangled with a sister-salad across the multiverse, this one existing in an alternate universe’s year 1863, and that entangled time-salad is being presented to President Abraham Lincoln.
The Majorana zero particles arrange themselves into a highly organized matrix capable of thought and action; because your salad provided the subatomic framework needed for these events to transpire, the Majorana zero matrix decides you are its creator, and as such must be rewarded. Silently scanning your synapses, the Majorana zero matrix discovers your love for cars, and grants you the ability to manifest into reality any car you’d like, as a real, drivable car!
Oh, there is one catch, though. Because the Salad of Creation is quantum-entangled with the 1863 time-salad, every car you manifest will have an instance of Abraham Lincoln in it, too. These Lincolns are pretty much identical to our universe’s Abraham Lincoln, except this one has reddish hair. Also, this Lincoln is even more prone to panic than our Lincoln was, and being blipped into existence over 160 years after their own time is going to be very traumatic for this Lincoln.
So, let’s say you blip a Lamborghini Miura into existence: in the passenger seat of that lovely car will be Abraham Lincoln, deeply confused and frightened, shaking like an opposed-three engine and shrieking and screaming at the top of his lungs. You’ll get in the car to drive it, and as soon as you stomp that throttle Lincoln will grab you by the shoulders and scream DEAR GOD WHAT IS THIS MADNESS and when you drive into the city and pass the first animated LCD billboard Lincoln will whip his head around and yell NO NO BEWITCHED PAINTING AHHHGGH WHY and then a plane will pass overhead and you’ll feel the hot spray of uncontrolled urination strike your leg as you turn to a writhing Lincoln gesturing wildly at the sky and bellowing EEEEAAAGUUUUUGGHHH IRON BIRD!
He’s going to be absolutely apoplectic, nonstop. There’s no calming him down. He’s freaked.
Oh, and because of the complex physics of the quantum realm, you can’t just drop old Abe off anywhere. He has to stay with the car for it to continue existing. You can gag him and tie him up, if you want, but it’s still our 16th president, and you’ll have to explain why he’s all tied up and crying in your trunk to someone at some point, probably.
You can blip the cars out of existence at will, and that will take Lincoln out, too, so at least you won’t have to leave him freaking his shit out in some parking deck while you have dinner. But as soon as you summon a new car, you’re getting a new Lincoln, in the same state of shock and panic.
SCENARIO TWO: Swap Souls To Swap Engines
Everyone likes engine swaps, right? Of course you do! It’s a great way to dramatically change the character of a given car, sometimes in a nice, unholy way! But, doing an engine swap is a colossal amount of work, arguably one of the hardest jobs you can undertake as someone who likes to wrench on cars. Your mind can think of all sorts of exciting engine swaps, but your available time and skill and resources just aren’t up to the challenge. At least, until you met that demon at your book club.
Yes, a demon, a literal demon, at your book club. The demon, named Clamazrael, hasn’t even started to read Infinite Jest and probably never will. He came there for souls, but just hasn’t been feeling it. He has taken a liking to you, though, and has looked into your soul and noted all of your dark desires, a shocking number of which revolve around cars. He wants souls, badly, but realizes that you may be key to helping him up his soul count, thanks to an interesting loophole in the technicalities of Hell’s soul-acquisition system.
You see, demons that take souls get their counters incremented when a soul is recorded leaving a body. Ordinarily, the soul would be placed into storage in the given demon’s fanny pack, but the tally gets incremented even if the soul is transferred into another being. Now, it’s technically possible for this demon to take, say, you, a dog, and a ferret, and transfer your soul into the dog, the dog’s soul into the ferret, and the ferret’s soul into you. Once a full loop of souls is made, you can get your soul back into you, and the intermediary beings, dog and ferret, will end up with each other’s souls. But, who cares, you have your soul, and the demon has their tally of souls increased! Win-win!
For this to work, though, the human has to willingly agree to give up their soul. So, to make this palatable for you, Clamazrael has agreed that if you bring him any two cars, he will use demonic magic to swap the two engines, perfectly and cleanly, from one car to another, as long as you’re willing to undergo the soul-loop procedure. So, for each time, you need to bring Clamazrael two cars and two animals of some kind. In the end, the demon will have another soul taken on the ledger, and you’ll have two engine-swapped cars and two animals with swapped souls.
You could sell the cars or just make money from doing strange engine swaps for customers! Want an MGA with a modern Coyote V8? Easy! Of course, you’ll also have to figure out what to do with a 2015 Ford Mustang that now has a 1500cc four-banger making 60 hp, but I bet someone will want it for the novelty value. Especially if you throw in a cat that acts like a dog!
So, what’s it going to be? Any car you want, but it has a freaking-out Abraham Lincoln shitting his pants in it, or being able to swap any cars’ engines, but you’ll have a lot of weird animals to deal with, and you’ll have to trust a demon. Time to choose!