Saturday, July 18, 2015

A Eulogy for My Little Car

The 2005 red Ford Focus that I scoot around in hasn’t died yet; but it is only a matter of time. I realized this recently; and it gave me more of a sentimental pang than I expected. To that end, I dedicate this post to my little car.

Once upon a time, that red Ford Focus was just the car that cute boy drives. Then, one day, I found myself in the passenger seat. We spent a lot of time in that car while first getting to know one another. (CONVERSATIONALLY! You nasty-minded people.)

(Okay, mostly.)

Once we had a small herd of bipeds to transport, it became My Car. My poor husband started packing his burly frame into the tiny, un-air-conditioned silver roller skate I used to drive. I can only assume that when he emerges from it in the parking lot in the morning, people stop to see if more clowns are going to get out. [Insert clowny honking noise.]

Anyway, besides the usual things that happen to cars, this poor thing has me to contend with. I bear this car no ill will; honestly, I’m quite fond of it. It carries my spawn around on our adventures, and does a bang-up job of it. But the fact is I’m kind of a mess. I’m a disorganized, distracted, uncoordinated mess.

Several examples:

1. Let’s not forget that I didn’t get my driver’s license until I was eighteen in a half, and didn’t learn how to drive a standard until a year or so after that. [Thanks again, Harlan Dalzell, and sorry about your transmission.] I finally mastered downshifting in my early thirties. It seemed way easier to just put that thang in neutral and jam on the brakes. Don’t judge.

2. I thought I was being clever by pre-boiling eggs as a quick on-the-go breakfast. I poked one into my face as I put my car into gear one morning, chewed it several times, and then sneezed violently, blowing chewed up boiled egg all over the steering wheel, dash, and windshield. One could argue that this damage was only cosmetic, or even that it only really damaged the dignity of the car. But it certainly didn’t help.

3. I have, as the delightful young gentleman who sold me my last set of tires stated, a Curbing Problem. Here is how the conversation progressed:

Tire Sales Person: You have…a Curbing Problem.
Me: Yes.

4. The 2005 Ford Focus has exactly zero Level Dashboard Space. In spite of this, I persist in setting things on it. Recently, I put a cup of precious, beautiful coffee on its silly, slanty surface. It promptly slid off, and somehow all of the coffee poured (in slow motion, mind you) into the little crevice betwixt the driver’s side window and the little rubber seal that runs along the door. It just completely disappeared. Then I heard a very soothing tinkling sound reminiscent of one of those rain sticks that one can find at shops that sell dream catchers and tiny Buddha statues and tie-dye onesies for your patchouli-scented baby. My hometown is riddled with these shops. Anyway, rain sticks are dried branches filled with pebbles or rice or something that makes awesome rain-ish sounds when you tilt them back and forth. So my car door did that for about ten seconds, and then a ton of coffee gushed out of the bottom onto the parking lot. That car doesn’t have power locks or windows or anything; but that doesn’t seem like a particularly GOOD thing to do to a car.

Someday, I’ll have a newer car that actually accommodates the size of my family. But I’ll always look back on the Red Ford Focus Days as pleasant ones. 

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