Chevy Silverado “Farm-to-Table” Video Challenges Everything I Thought I Knew About Truck Guys
For a while, Chevrolet was advertising its Colorado with testosterone-fueled commercials that waxed rhapsodic on the virtues of being a “Truck Guy.” According to Chevy, owning a pickup was synonymous with being a real “man’s man”—the kind of sexy, rugged, powerful “bad boy” you wouldn’t want to take home to your parents.
But now the automaker seems to be taking a very different tact in this new video promoting the 2016 Chevy Silverado, which focuses on Andy Chae, the founder of Fisheye Farms, an organic, urban farm that is helping to bring the “farm-to-table” movement to Detroit.
Or, to put it bluntly, a damned dirty hippie:
OK, I will admit that Andy displays some of the trappings of Chevy’s proverbial Truck Guy. He has an entrepreneurial spirit, a job that requires him to work with his hands, and, you know, a truck.
But at the same time, I’m getting a vibe from Andy that’s more “Bernie Bro” than “Truck Guy.” His focus on sustainability and community-building is all well and good, but it’s at odds with the badass loner I picture when I close my eyes and imagine the perfect Truck Guy.
I mean, Andy is a guy who grows kale. For use in salads. Which he eats.
By contrast, a Truck Guy runs on steak and potatoes, just as surely as his identity-defining vehicle runs on swagger and unleaded gasoline.
To put it another way, Chevy once put out its own “Truck Guy Deodorant,” which looked kind of like Old Spice and smelled a lot like freedom. Andy, meanwhile, seems like the kind of person who doesn’t wear deodorant, because he believes in “going natural.” And if he does wear deodorant, it’s probably that Tom’s of Maine crap that doesn’t really work.
But you know what? I think this is ultimately a good thing. In this divisive age, Chevy seems to be acknowledging that the Truck Guy culture can encapsulate more than just one conception of masculinity. Along with Chevy spokesman Howie Long’s evolving views on trucks with steps, I think this signals a move away from the traditionally macho, heteronormative standards that have defined Truck Guy-ness for too long.
Who knows? Perhaps we’re not too far from a day when even the existence of “Truck Gals” can be celebrated.
Patrick Grieve was born in Southwestern Ohio and has lived there all of his life, with the exception of a few years spent getting a Creative Writing degree in Southeastern Ohio. He loves to take road trips, sometimes to places as distant as Northeastern or even Northwestern Ohio. Patrick also enjoys old movies, shopping at thrift stores, going to ballgames, writing about those things, and watching Law & Order reruns. He just watches the original series, though, none of the spin-offs. And also only the ones they made before Jerry Orbach died. Season five was really the peak, in his opinion. See more articles by Patrick.