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I imagine cars didn't always have A/C, and human civilization managed to survive for a long time without it.
Indeed, in most circles, it is a racially charged word. Just check http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=honkey for confirmation.
It was a Puerto Rican neighborhood... [people] eyed us three honkeys questioningly.
Why does he feel the need to refer to his friends and himself with such a racially charged word as "hokeys"?