who's the ECL?
Wednesday, August 23, 2006
When I lived in San Francisco back in the '90's I drove around my father's old beat-up 1980 Toyota Corolla. It was dark blue with vinyl white interior that had ripped all along the seams of the driver's chair. There was no power anything, the cassette player didn't work, and the dashboard had a deep crack in it. But, I had a car. And since I was living in The City, and in the worst part of town besides, I was happy that my car was crappy. I mean, the only thing of worth to be stolen from my car was the battery. Which someone stole.
When I decided to move back to Oregon, I chose to leave that old beater behind. I can't remember what my dad did with it; I think he sold it to one of my cousins.
My parents flew up to Portland about a week after I got here to help me get settled, and to help me buy a car. Since I wanted another Honda Civic (I drove around a cute little hatchback in college) Dad was going to help me buy a brand new car.
When we went to the dealership, I got in a Civic and test drove it with the salesman and my mom. He went on to tell me all about the Alpine speakers, the compartment for the car phone, and then, THEN, he proceeds to tell me that the dashboard was made of "space age plastic."
Space age plastic!! Well shit, where's the slot to recharge my lightsaber?
Luckily for him I was already set on buying a Civic otherwise I would have stomped off the lot in an amusedly indignant huff.
This little Civic had power stuff: windows, steering, rearview mirrors, and locks. It had airbags. It had a CD player. It had an alarm system, even!
A couple of days later I was sitting in my shiny new car and decided it was time to give the car a name. First I determined the gender of the car was female, then I felt that she wanted a princess-type name. Cinderella? No. Esmerelda? no. Priscilla? Yes!
Priscilla and I bonded pretty quickly after that. One day, as I was driving my roommate and I around he looked over at me thoughtfully and said, "you really love your car, don't you?" Of course I did, but what made him say that right then? He said something about how the energy of me and Priscilla were totally humming along together or something like that. It was true. Priscilla and I were like one symbiotic being at times.
I will confess to you right now: I love my car. I love driving her. I love driving fast and beating out the hotshots in their BMWs. I love the sound of her little Civic engine as she revs up. I know I am consuming the deteriorated bodies of dinosaurs and contributing to the war in the middle east, but I love my car.
Today was a big day for Priscilla:
Yep, my baby girl turned the big 100,000!
To celebrate, we went to the DEQ so she could get new stickers for her license plate. (She was 6 weeks overdue.) Then we drove to the Jiffy Lube and got her oil changed. The Jiffy Lubers tried to bully me into getting all sorts of other repairs done, but I put my hands over my ears and kept yelling "just change the oil! just change the oil! lalalalalalalalalalalalalalalala" until the Lubers got the hint and just changed the oil.
I would have taken her to the car wash too, but I had to scoot over to Beaverton to participate in a focus group about auto glass replacement services and eat a free sandwich and cookie and earn a hundred bucks. Priscilla was a little disappointed--she was looking forward to being shiny again--but she got to drive on the freeway so she's okay. I'll just have to get her to the carwash on Thursday.
Now that she's up there in the mileage department; I'm a little freaked out about her health and well-being. But I think she's doing okay, and she's a Honda Civic---love her a little and she'll love you a lot.
To Priscilla--long life and viscous oil; may you continue to age with spark and speed!