The simple act of driving in San Francisco can be so challenging that some of us may want to trade in our driver's licenses for Clipper cards. Among those cavalier souls who wave good-bye to fender paint and embrace the bumper car Muni pilots, there is an even bolder population of drivers to be found. These are the eccentrics who belong as much in a Prius as they do on a fixie. You pass them in traffic, craning your neck to get a look at the driver, and you think, “Yup. That driver fits that ride.” You might even go so far as to wonder what they would be like on a date.

I didn’t go on any dates, but I did the next best thing: I chased these drivers down and photographed them. After some shouted conversations in traffic, coffee shop advances, and notes under windshield wipers, I managed to gain access to the lives of eight truly unique drivers. Sex, drugs, and flat tires infused the exceptional histories of these Bay Area motorheads. After hearing stories about how their vehicle relationships came to be, I found that like singles and pets or old people and sweaters, these rides do indeed say something about the characters who own them.