It's not about the house.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

More or Less Bunk, Part III: Days of Wine

Waaay back in 2008, Dr. One Friend's folks said they would buy her a new car. As in, like, new-new. Brandy-new. It was a combination PhD-getting, 40-turning, New England-living Christmas present, but she had to do it by herself. All they were offering to do was write the check -- to her, not to the dealer -- she'd have to do all the rest on her own. As a result, she'd been sort of dragging her feet for quite some time.

First, she thought about it. This process took six months.

Then, she decided she wanted an Audi TTS convertible. Vroom-vroom! That lasted, oh, about another month or so -- until she realized she wasn't going to get anywhere near $25,000 on trade-in for her 1996 Toyota Camry.

Finally, probably sometime late last spring, she got all earnest. She did research, she test-drove, she comparison-shopped, and she narrowed it down to a few realistic choices.

June came and went...

And then July...

By August she knew what she wanted -- Subaru Forester, definitely. But should it be red? Or orange?

September came...

October...

Red! Definitely red!

Most of November...

Then, when I thought Chuck (TFT) was dead-dead-dead, she called me.

"This is going to be very awkward," she began. "Just let me say it:

"You know I've been planning to trade in the Camry all along. I'll get less for it than I would if I sold it, but I don't feel like dealing with the hassle. It's old, it needs brakes, and I don't have the patience to negotiate with some nitpicky Craigslist asshole."

Patience has never been high on Dr. One Friend's long list of admirable attributes.

"Now," she continued. "I decided back in August that, if you want it, I would sell it to you for the price they offered me on trade-in. Don't answer now. I've been quoted anywhere from $500 to $1500 for it, and I know that $1500 is twice what you guys usually spend. Think about it, let me settle on a dealership and get a firmer price, then if you're interested I'll bring it up and you can have George take a look at it -- make sure, too, that he can fix Toyotas. Because like I said, it's old, and I know it's needed brake shoes for a while."

I thought about it. The process took about six minutes.

"The only reason I hesitate," I said, "is that I am going to bitch about the car. Maybe not today, and maybe not tomorrow, but soon, and for the rest of its life. I'm going to name it, and hate it, and make fun of it on my blog, and I wouldn't want any of that to affect our friendship. I won't be mad at you for any of it -- trust me, I'm more than used to driving shitbox cars -- but I wouldn't want you to feel defensive and put-upon every time you hear me stamp my feet and say 'That fucking car!'"

She may live 150 miles from me, but when I stamp my feet I stamp 'em loud. Fortunately, put-uponitude is also low on Dr. One Friend's personality profile.

"I would never have even thought about that, Erin," she said. "Jeez, don't be ridiculous!"

And two weeks later it was done. The price got firmed up at $1100, George looked at it and said it was the best car we've ever had. Dr. One Friend picked up her red Forester, drove the Camry here for me and took the train back down.

I got it insured and registered, but was late getting it inspected because Something Maudlin happened. When I finally took it in -- to the same garage I buy my gas from, and the same mechanic who had just done Chuck (TFT) the week before -- I swear to god I saw him do a cartwheel.

"Where did you get this car!?" he said, practically giggling. "Even just pulling it in to the station, I can tell it's tight. It's like brand-new! You'll get another 100,000 miles out of her, easily!"

So I guess that seals it: the New Car is a her. Which at least narrows down the choices for a name...


You probably think this story's finished, don't you? Ah, have we not met at all over the years? To be continued!

6 comments:

HPH said...

Of course you have to pick a name that is in a song. You can sing to her at the top of your lungs while waiting for the bridge. Like Rhonda or Lucille or Mary or Elvira... My car is Sherry.

12ontheinside said...

Have you named her already? Not sure if we're supposed to be guessing or suggesting!

Charlie said...

Um...excuse me, I am the one that's not patient? Hello? Pot?

Sashimi said...

I haven't hero worshipped for many years now, but here goes:
Between P G Wodehouse and you, I'll probably chose the former, but it's close..really close.

ege said...

HPH -- How have you been reading ahead when I haven't even written it yet!?

12 -- Sorry. Guessing! In fact, I've been giving you some pretty blatant clues...

Charlie -- I mean, "Dr. One Friend." Please shut up. This is my blog. Thank you.

Sashimi -- I. Um. Oh. My. Jeeves!

Poppo said...

Ya!! The clues are easy when you already know thw answer to the riddle...
SHHHH!!!!