It wasn't until I moved to Vermont in the mid 1980s that I first heard about cow tipping (which is mostly just legend). Now there is a high tech version of cow tipping known as Smart Car tipping, and it is definitely NOT legend. 'Smart' began as an adjective that referred to a class of hybrid cars whose small, lightweight form factor resulted in high fuel efficiency, but 'Smart' became a noun when Mercedes-Benz capitalized on the nomenclature to name its car that. Hopefully, only the all-electric Smart Cars are being tipped or the eco-warriors that pervade SF are becoming eco-terrorists by risking HAZMAT cleanup scenarios with fuel and oil spills in the city streets.
Back in the 1960s and 1970s when wee little foreign cars were often the butt of jokes, Volkswagen (VW) Bugs and Beetles found themselves falling victim to pranks. Their relatively diminutive size rendered them easily picked up by four guys and relocated to other areas of a parking lot, turned 90° in a parking space between two cars, put up on cinder blocks so the wheels didn't touch the pavement, and other such shenanigans. In fact, the instructor (Russ Lorenzen) for the electrical vocational course I high school drove a VW Beetle and on several occasions some of the most muscular guys in class would turn Russ' car's in its parking spot. We referred would tell him it was his fault for teaching us inductive reasoning so we couldn't resist rotating his car's vector by +90°. Unfortunately, pranksters would sometimes roll the cars onto their roofs, often causing gas and/or oil to contaminate the vehicle and ground. Hanging a VW from the Golden Gate Bridge has been a long-standing prank by senior engineering classes for many years.
Posted June 9, 2014