Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Starting to Think About It

What am I starting to think about? Getting a new car.

It wouldn't be a new car. Just new to me. And it's hard for me to admit that I've even started thinking about such a heinous thing.

Jade, my current car, has been a good car. She's been with me for 11 years. That's, like, 58 in car years. I don't know, I didn't really do the math. But I thought we'd be together forever.

We've had a lot of good times. A lot of great road trips. A lot of spur of the moment meals in the front seat. And there was that one time I spent the night in the back seat. Don't ask.

But we've had our share of down times as well. There was the time that the check engine light came on and stayed on for about two years. There was the time the A/C went out during one of the hottest summers I'd ever experienced. And we've suffered together as gas prices have soared.

Now I'm afraid we're reaching a point in the life of the car that I'm not sure we can both survive. She tends to breathe heavily when we idle at the stop light. Sometimes she sputters while we're just driving down the road. Sometimes she acts like she wants to cut right off as soon as I start her up.

I thought that, maybe, she was trying to tell me that she just needed some fuel injector cleaner. I added the treatment to my last tank of gas, but there was no improvement. But it isn't just the sputtering. There are a lot of other little things that seem to go wrong and the little things are adding up and happening more frequently. I was hoping to get her past 200,000 miles, but it looks like she won't go much further than the 187k she's got.

But here's my situation: I can't afford to get a new car. I don't have enough money put away to just buy a cheap car with cash. I found out that I'm pre-qualified for an auto loan where I work up to $10,000. It's nice to know that, but I really can't afford a car payment. On top of that, I'm sure my insurance payments would need to increase. There's a good chance that this replacement car, even if it was a cheap one, would end up costing me $150 to $200 each month. And I have no idea where that money would come from.

I'm looking for a higher paying job. I'm hoping one will pan out soon. But I've also had that hope for about the last three years, to no avail. So I'm gonna put this out there. Just to see what happens. I don't expect anything, but the door won't open if I don't knock.

Over to the right there's a "Feed the Blogger Fund" box with a button that says "Donate." From there, if one were so inclined, one could make a donation into my Paypal account. I'm not going to make any crazy claims like your gift is tax deductible. Frankly, I don't know how any of that works. And I'm pretty sure it's not tax deductible. I'm not a non-profit organization.

I can't even remember why I originally added that button to the blog. I know it's been there for some time now. And I know that I had one friend actually make a donation when I initially added it. I've scoured through my old blog posts but couldn't find the one where I first mentioned it. Must have been really important though. Not exactly new car important, but important nonetheless.

But anyway, that button is always over there. So give, don't give, it's up to you. I don't think that button will actually make or break me one way or the other. I guess the dream is to make money from the blog, then I wouldn't need a grown-up job. But we live in a real world and I'm one of those real people who needs a real job or two to make ends meet.

I'm thinking about a used Ford Focus. Somewhere in the early 2000s. Those aren't bad little cars. Whatever I get has to have good gas mileage. That is a necessity. That's all for now.

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