Many people like to ask why I treat my feline child as if she is a human child and as if no human child could ever replace her, citing things like how “cats scratch things” and that they’re “pretty much plotting to destroy the world.” To that nonsense, I raise you: this toddler* who scratched up $14,000 worth of Audis at a dealership.
Who’s plotting to destroy the world now?
Carscoops, via Australian outlet 7News, writes that an Audi dealership sued a man identified as “Mr. Zhao” in China after his daughter scratched 10 new cars when they visited the lot in November. Via a decision from the Lingui People’s Court, 7News reports that Zhao and the dealership settled on about $14,000 in damages at current exchange rates. The dealership originally asked for more than $41,000, the story said.
The ordeal began when, 7News reports, Zhao’s family accompanied a friend to the dealership and brought their 3-year-old daughter along. The daughter then apparently picked up a stone and used it to scratch drawings into the paint on 10 new cars, but 7News didn’t specify what the drawings were.
Whatever the quality or subject matter, though, the art prompted the dealership to sue, with its intended damages including having to sell the cars as used with “significant markdowns.” The dealer argued that with their paint jobs redone, the cars couldn’t be sold as new—thus, the $41,0000 ask and $14,000 settlement.
Of course, this all could have been a tremendous opportunity to sell the cars as artwork—conveying that in a society where people care too much about having the newest and shiniest things, no matter the cost or environmental impact on the world, the children know that creativity and expression are more important than anything money can buy. Then, you sell that message for (a lot of) money and buy stuff.
After all, eating bananas for art went viral recently. A toddler drawing on 10 new cars with a rock? You better believe that would get some attention.
But that’s not what happened, and instead, an unlucky parent ended up with a big bill after taking his child on a trip to the car dealership. Luckily for me, a cat parent, my feline child would never accompany me to a dealership if I ever went to one, saving me this kind of monetary worry.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I think I just heard my Christmas tree crashing to the ground in ceremonious fashion in the other room. I wonder who could be behind that.