Monday, May 12, 2014
Mid-Life Crisis and Cars
I'm a bad blogger. Two months of utter blog silence. Good Lord, if I had any followers I'd have lost them by now for sure.
In my defense, it's been a whirlwind two months. I was back out to Palm Springs for 3 weeks and in the middle of it turned 45 years old. There's no denying it...that is definitely middle age.
On that note, we bought a new (used) car while I was in the desert. Something totally impractical, over the top and unnecessary. I guess this is my mid-life crisis car purchase. We are now proud owners of a 1996 Jaguar XJ12. The only car (that I'm aware of anyway...but if you know me then you know I don't know shit about cars) that has a 12 cylinder engine. Miles per gallon?...barely enough to count. Pretension and elitism?....dripping in it!
JD and I have a completely different approach to cars. He thinks they're a mode of transportation. I think they're a statement. We both knew in our current, 2-house / 2-car, life that we needed to make room for at least one additional car so we could have two in Atlanta and stop the "drop-me-off / pick-me-up" from work dance. This, of course, we approached from two completely different angles with two completely different minimum requirements.
We did start with one point of agreement...it had to be relatively inexpensive. My base requirement was that the car had to be cool (think 1982 Corvette) and JD's was that it had to have airbags (think Buick Regal). When you add in the "relatively inexpensive" factor, this cuts the options that meet these criteria to an amazingly small number of cars.
After scouring Craigslist and bringing in two other cars for a mechanical inspection (which caused us to pass on them) we bought the Jag. Believe me, this is the condensed version of that saga but I just don't have the will to relive all the debate, pouting and flat-out arguments that went into us finally coming to an agreement (for lack of a better word) to get this car.
Bad gas mileage, expensive to maintain, 18+ years old, blah, blah, blah. On the flip side, it's pretty, classy, extremely roomy, in great shape, goes like a bat out of hell and...wait for it...has fold down tray tables in the back seat! Seriously, it's nicer than first class plane accommodations.
Admittedly, at first glance it looks like a Palm Springs grandmother's car. I guess it's the V-12 engine that fulfilled my mid-life crisis need.
Unfortunately, we finalized the purchase the day I had to return to Atlanta so I got to drive it a total of 10 miles. JD is hanging in PS for a while longer and has been in charge of taking it to the garage for some maintenance items that we knew were needed going into the deal. After driving it for the past week and getting several unsolicited compliments while doing mundane chores like grocery shopping and pumping gas, I think he may be coming over to my way of relating to cars. For the first time EVER in the 15 years we've been together, he asked me how much it costs to get the car washed because it "has dust on it".
I almost fell off my chair.