Saturday, November 25, 2006

On The Day After Thanksgiving . . .

We bought a car.

Nothing fancy. It's 13 years old, has 177k miles on it, the clearcoat on the hood is coming up, various lights et al. have issues.

But it's an Accord, with no wrecks and less than 200k miles on it (given how much I drive, it'll probably never make it that far in the 5 years we'll end up keeping it). And it came at a price that allows us to replace at least one garage door opener.

Our house has a 2-car garage. But instead of one big opening with one large door, we have two smaller openings with two small doors, each with its own opener. And by small, I mean that there are about 3 inches on either side of the van mirrors when we go through the opening. Pulling into the garage is like docking a supertanker. But if I mess up, I don't kill lots of sea birds, I scratch my wife's car. You decide which is worse.

Of the two garage door openers that we inherited with the new house, one has a light that doesn't come on, while the other opener refuses to work at all. I unplugged it when it died because the motor sounded like it was running even though the door wasn't opening. So now the plug hangs down in the garage like a barnacle from Half-Life. I have issues about walking around on that side, and every time I get near it, my subconscious starts scanning for a crowbar.

But with only one car, we had nothing to park on the other side, so it didn't matter that the door wouldn't open. Now it does. I may just get them both replaced, so that a) they'll match, and b) we can get remote openers that work on both of them. Now we have one remote that works just on the working door. It's about the size of cell phone from 1985, and I'm worried that the radiation from it is leaking into the children. The other remote is a 2-button model, one for each door, and is the only way to open the second, now broken door (there is no doorbell thingy for that one). We kept that remote in a safe when it wasn't in use.

All this is to say, the car was inexpensive. Which is good, and it will allow us to return the far half of our garage to the car-storage function for which it was created, instead of a repository for as-yet unrecycled plastic milk jugs, spare child safety seats, and tools that I'm too lazy to put back in the shed.

It's probably a good car, although my mechanic will have a final say on that on Monday morning. It passed through all my filters, but nothing compares to having someone pop the hood, pull the tires, and jack it up and look underneath. Especially if that person knows what he's doing and isn't afraid to tell you the truth.

The boys, of course, love it. It's green, which is in the top five favorite colors of all of them. And, as Stephen said after inspecting the car inside and out, "Good. Now we have two Hondas again."

The Force is strong in that one.


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