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When it comes to government-sanctioned modes of self-expression, it’s hard to beat a vanity plate, and while you may think you have already seen the most ridiculous ones out on the road, the fact is that the true gems lie in the discard pile.

Despite how it may seem from casual observance, the Ontario government does have stipulations for what is and isn’t acceptable to be printed on a vanity license plate in the province. Obscene language and derogatory slang are also no-go’s for vanity plate submissions in Ontario, therefore ruling out such pieces of micro poetry as 2020.WTF, AREUDUMB, DAAAAMN, and HECKIN.

References to public figures, politicians and law enforcement are also a point of concern for vanity plates, so unfortunately applicants for OHOPOPO, GRETAWHO, PREZIDNT, and VV.PUTIN may be forced to develop a personality instead Finally, anything that may commonly be considered difficult to read won’t make it through the application process; submissions like JU5TSOLD, KOBEEEEE, LE4F5, MR.FR35H, OLDSKOQL, SORRRRRY, and WAK4NDA, for example, did not make the cut.


What must have first felt like a cruel joke became all too serious for one London, Ont. couple, as Paige Chiacchia and Kevin Nyamutera were left helpless as both of their vehicles were stolen from their driveway, within the span of about 45 minutes in December.

Nyamutera was the victim of what is called a “warmup theft”; a practice among thieves to target vehicles that are left unattended in driveways while they heat up. One stolen car is devastating enough, but when Chiacchia realized that the spare keys to her Ford Fusion were still on the keyring of Nyamutera’s Toyota RAV4, which was taken from their driveway about 30 minutes earlier, she knew the worst was yet to come. In a tragic moment of irony, Chiacchia’s fears were proven valid.

“I was about to go buy a steering wheel lock … and Googling where to get one,” she told the CBC. “I got dressed and was about to go get the steering wheel lock and my car was also gone.

“We were sitting in the living room in dead silence, listening, and we could not hear a single thing. Not a car door, nothing.” To say the couple was gutted to have their relatively new vehicles–and recently paid off, in Chiacchia’s case–stolen just before Christmas would be putting it lightly. Luckily, the couple said they already had surveillance cameras on their wish list this year.


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