Archive for September, 2012

Out with the Old, in with the New

Wednesday, September 26th, 2012

 The time is right for a change; no more hot air, no more false hopes, no more wasting resources, no room for sentimentality. It is time to be energy efficient; possibly eco-friendly, It is time to help kick start the economy by spending wisely while remaining fiscally responsible. Financial institutions will receive a shot in the arm while government will welcome a boost to their sagging tax revenues.

This is not a political manifesto for the Republican Party, but merely a personal decision to make a change in my style of automation. That’s right folks: I’m exchanging my 1983 Buick Park Avenue for a 2012 Honda CR-V. I do hope my mother-in-law understands.

The Buick was a state of the art model in 1983, but advancing years have taken their toll. The air conditioning hasn’t worked since I acquired the beast from my mother-in-law seven years ago. Two of the electronic windows don’t work and are taped up with aluminum foil. They are operated by individual motors which cost $400 a piece to replace which is far more than the car is worth.

The radiator has developed a major leak, and requires topping up with half a gallon of water every morning. The beast was never economical on gas consumption, but its existing 10 miles to the gallon is unacceptable in this age of rising gas prices. The radio works if you’re happy to listen to two or three stations providing you avoid dead zones.

I will miss the sumptuous seats which are far more comfortable than lazy-boys, and the horn, resembling something you might hear on a cruise liner passing through fog, provided an intimidating factor to fellow motorists who had the temerity to chop me up.

Toss in the dodgy starter and it’s a miracle that the beast continues to traverse the highways and byways of Metro Atlanta. The unpredictable starter required frequent trips to the gas station armed with a five gallon can. I would prefer the starter to give up the ghost in my own driveway rather than embarrass me on a gas station forecourt.

However a redeeming feature of the beast is its security system. I simply leave the doors unlocked because nobody in his right mind is going to attempt to steal the mean machine.

Postscript: Nearly three weeks later, I am driving around in my new Honda CR-V which still maintains that new car smell. The air conditioning works like a dream and I no longer arrive home from work dehydrated and sweating like a race horse. I can even relax in traffic listening to various radio stations of my choice, but I still miss those padded cushioned seats provided by the Buick.

Last Sunday, the fateful day arrived when I said farewell to the beast. Earlier in the week I placed a “for sale” sign on the windshield and a guy from Decatur decided to buy it. His wife didn’t appear to share his enthusiasm for his new purchase but she did loosen up when she sat in of the seats. The car is a labor of love, and the new owner was confident he could restore it to something resembling a decent motor.  I had a tear in my eye as he drove the beast out of my drive for the last time. Bon voyage.