2007: Hitch Critters
Hitch Critters take driver distraction to an entirely new and insipid dimension. It’s bad enough we have to look at spinning propellers or Dallas Cowboy logos sticking out of a receiver hitch when waiting at a stoplight and crawling in rush-hour traffic. Now, now we’re going to be assaulted by silly animatronic characters.
Clearly the most ridiculous offering at the SEMA Show, Hitch Critters are a cross between a Tickle-me-Elmo and a bobble-head doll. The various styles include a deer, duck and horse. They attach themselves rather uncomfortably to a 2-inch hitch ball. The fish, as Willie Nelson so eloquently once said, looks like it’s trying to “suck the chrome off a trailer hitch". There is no mechanism to secure or lock the critters. Officials suggest using the modern replacement for baling wire: tie downs. But we’re still trying to wonder who want to steal one.
The critters come alive when the brake is applied. They flop around or wave their paws. Some have target symbols and red lights that illuminate like a third brake light. This dynamic will surely provide a great show for those traveling behind Hitch Critters coming down a mountain pass.
There is a market for Hitch Critters at every truck stop on I-20 and I-15. Obviously Hitch Critters will match the personality of some vehicle owners and may even enhance the resale value of their trucks.