Saturday, September 11, 2010

Where in the World is DIS? (Southern Registration Ovals)

I was in Ohio a week or so ago and was surprised at the number of vehicles sporting a white oval sticker on their back window that read "HHI". For some reason Ohio residents have always loved visiting Hilton Head Island on vacation. We used to joke that one of four cars on the island had an Ohio plate. Back in the south, you can see these stickers representing many of the coastal areas, KI (Kiawah Island), SI (Sullivans Island), IOP (Isle of Palms), MB (Myrtle Beach), SSI (St Simons Island), JI (Jekyl Island), TYB (Tybee Island). And, you always had those trying to show off that they vacation in exclusive spots where few of us can afford to go - JH (Jackson Hole) or ASP (Aspen Colorado).

It is almost a game trying to figure out the location associated with the letters. I'm usually pretty good at the game. but I will admit that a few had me stumped. DIS, Disney?, Dataw Island? DR, Daufuskie Reserve? Or TSS? Try as hard as I could, it just didn't come to me. I had to admit that these stickers seemed to be as legitimate as the others, so they had to represent some place. Now, I am sure that there are many places I am not aware of. But still, I figured eventually it would come to me. And, one day it did.

These letters do represent vacation spots, where families take their campers, and spend a significant amount of money. They look forward to their visits all year. And return home with memories that will last a lifetime. Therefore they are very proud to have these stickers on their vehicles. And, you'll only see it in the South - DIS - Daytona International Speedway (The Great American Race), DR - Darlington Raceway (The Lady in Black, The Track to Tough to Tame), and TSS - Talladego Super Speedway (The Big One).

It was the big hair, the leather jackets, and the NASCAR stickers that clued me in. I should have realized something was amiss. The white oval stickers just didn't quite fit in with the "Locked, Loaded, & Proud" sticker on the right rear bumper and the "My Blue Tick Hound can beat the Hell out of your Honor Student Any Day" on the left. It takes all kinds to make the world go around. But, it is just a "special" group who truly understands the world that only makes left turns, at high rates of speed, in large groups on Sunday afternoons. Of course, they also think the last line of The Star Spangled Banner is "Gentlemen start your engines."

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