People tend to smile at our Acura SUV as it trundles past. I think it is because our car looks like E.T.
I’m not just saying this because humans have a well-recognized tendency to see patterns as human faces. Our brains seem hard-wired, from birth to dotage, to interpret random blotches and spaces and to organize them into face-like shapes. This is why we see “faces” of religious figures and celebrities in wallpaper patterns, on buildings, on plates of food, and in rusted spots on the sides of giant oil storage drums.
In this case, however, our car’s eerie resemblance to E.T. is no fluke product of randomly firing synapses in the human brain. No, our vehicle actually looks like the friendly visitor from another planet, with its large, wide-set eyes, its button nose, and its shy, happy smile — just like E.T.’s expression when the ship from his home planet returned to Earth to take him home. Of course, our car lacks a glowing finger and a glowing chest cavity, but that’s beside the point.
Judge for yourself!