Thursday, August 05, 2010

Trading Up

While waiting over two weeks to close the deal on my triumphant conversion to a Man Van, my motoring life has stalled in limbo. I'm driving the same good truck I was a month ago, but it seems a worn copy of its former self. Like being on a date with a girl you know you're going to break up with, it's the inversion of the first date when you are looking for all the qualities and signs that this was meant to be. I've definitely moved into the I don't know what I ever saw in you phase. And the truck knows it.

The driver's door gives up a pathetic little squeak when I open it. Something is rattling in the console -- a nervous tick I never noticed before. It seems to be collecting more dirt than usual. The rock dot on the windshield is spidering. This rig definitely knows it is being dumped and has stopped taking care of itself. When our favorite song comes on the radio I swear the engine lugs. What, you and your car don't have a favorite song? What kind of American are you?

Americans love their cars. Until we don't. First cars we always remember. Cars we might have had for awhile but didn't really deserve we remember. Trade-ins just get added to The Number -- no more indelible than your roommate's girlfriend's friend from Grand Rapids, or that bartender in Harrisburg.

So, fare-thee-well Toyota Tacoma double cab with the five foot bed, I hardly knew ye. Hello Toyota Sienna. Park it anywhere. Make yourself at home. Afterall, it is a three year lease.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

My beloved, 10-year-old VW Passat was going to fail it's annual inspection (due by July 31) and would cost more than it was worth to repair. So I drove it for almost a year knowing that a new car was in my future.

No car wash, I let the washer fluid run out, and I went 3K miles over the recommended oil change. I admit - I even put in "cheap gas" the last few times. And then July 31 I walked into the dealer and walked out with the keys to a new Mazda 6.

My VW was towed away yesterday - hopefully the ALS Association gets SOMETHING for it. I was sad watching it go...until I walked past my garage and saw the shiny new toy safely tucked away there.

Is amazing how fickle we all are with our possessions!

9:31 AM  
Blogger Stacy said...

Of course my car and I have a favorite song. "Are We Running?" by Lenny Kravitz.

I always love the new car but sometimes the old sticks with you. I still miss a Subaru wagon I foolishly gave up a few years back.

I hope the van delivers the joy.

7:35 PM  
Blogger Jake said...

I got to drive the company minivan yesterday and thought of you. It was a nice ride, and not just because it got me out of the office for a little bit.

2:53 PM  
Anonymous Isobel said...

Had a nearly 19 year old Austin Metro, was not its first owner though. I grew attached to its quirks and spent more than was rational keeping it on the road. Then 2 months before its 19th birthday, had its annual road test and went to the garage to hear the news. 3 mechanics, who had helped me with in the past, lined up to break the news there is nothing more we can, they said 'we're afraid it's time to say goodbye' knowing I would be in denialand refused my keys back in case I took it somewhere else that less scrupulous mechnanics would charge me a fortune for repairs only to have it break down a month later. 3 years ago this month, I still miss it:)

4:58 AM  
Blogger jpeschken said...

I am just repeating it from a car ad I saw, but it's a good way to feel better about your minivan.

What could be more manly than driving arond with up to 7 of your offspring in the minivan?

12:19 PM  

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