Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Because I can. I will.

The title of this blog would lead one to believe that every entry herein contained will directly correlate edibles and my personal history. Though a large percentage of that statement may hold true, I do have other interests. Many of these which make me hungry and direct me to either cook or buy some thing to eat. In the end it all makes sense. If you think about anything long enough, it will begin to make sense. Try it.

In any event, this entry was not to rant or to justify myself, but rather to shed light in one of my ongoing goals. A car. A vehicle. A ride. Not a Ford Probe. Not a Ford.

Upon submitting myself to a slow death by RSS, one of my regular reads, Get Rich Slowly, came up. There was a post about car trouble and the fiscal issues involved with it.

In the afternoon, the shop called with the damage. (I’m half-remembering this conversation — I don’t know anything about cars, so I probably have the details wrong, though the numbers are right.) “Your coolant system is shot,” the woman told me. “There was a crack near the thermostat, which apparently allowed the coolant to drain out completely. It’ll cost $373 to fix.”

I sighed. “That may fix the trouble with your heater, too,” the woman said. “The bad news is we found other problems. You know the airbag light that was on? That’s not good. Right now, the airbag won’t deploy in a crash. If you want that repaired, it’ll cost another $432.”

“Yes, I definitely want the airbag fixed,” I said. Seven years ago an airbag saved my life. Call me superstitious, but I won’t drive a car without one now.

“There’s one more thing,” the woman said. “The key is stuck in the ignition. We can’t get it out.”

I sighed again. This has been a problem for over a year, but I’ve always managed to work around it. The shop, however, was stymied. “We need to replace the ignition. It’ll cost $135 for a new tumbler, and about $225 for labor. It takes about 2-1/2 hours to get into the steering column to replace it.”

She clicked her keyboard. “The total so far is $1165.” [GRS]

This snippet had a ring to it a litlle bit more than just familiar. I look around my desk and found that it's time to renew my registration, with which comes a mandatory Virginia emissions testing. I've never had a problem passing this, however, I never took the test in 2008 on a 1994 Probe.

I have started my savings accounts. I have started my emergency fund. I am seriously close to abolishing my debt in its entirety. Time to pull my 2008 credit report!

But now comes the part about what kind of car to buy. 2-door, 4-door. I kind of secretly want an SUV, but I think it would weigh on my conscience too much if I did. Hybrid. I mean, this is worse than going to Starbuck's. The major issue here, is I know NOTHING about cars. I'm actually going to need to get down and hit the books. Learn a little more. Anyone out there with any car shopping experience?