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21 August 2003 @ 03:28 pm
Cars suck.  
A few weeks ago, I had to get major repairs done on my car. It was quite extensive and expensive (to the tune of about $1,009.86), and I would have preferred to not go that route -- the repairs were pushing the envelope of the Blue Book value of the car. But it's not like I have a job or something that will allow me to make monthly payments on a new car, so I opened a Pep Boys card to put it on and reasoned with myself that this would be the LAST time I did that. Next time the car needs repairs like that again, I'm just replacing the damn car.

So my tire has a slow leak. I've known this for a couple of weeks, but haven't been able to do anything about it 'cause the work on the house has been so high-priority. But today, Jen and I were able to take it in.

The tire that has the slow leak is the only good news they saw. That repair will be free. However, that's the only tire in decent condition - the OTHER three tires are all shot and need replacing. And the method in which they're all shot indicates that there's some major alignment issues that need to be taken care of. Oh, and the struts are leaking and causing problems, which could be a cause of the alignment issues, and will do nothing but get worse with time.

Tires: $230
Alignment: $50
Struts: $530


OK, so what I decide is that I've already committed myself to getting a new car in the next 6-12 months anyway, but my job situation hasn't changed and I still can't afford to get a new car right now. So I ask what'll happen if I have them do the tires and alignment, but not the struts? Well, the same problem will happen again, but quicker - the new tires can last probably around 6 months with these struts, depending on how I drive. So that's what I authorize. Do it.

We go get lunch, then head home. On the way, my cell phone rings. My front brakes are almost to the dangerously-low level (like, you know, metal on metal). They think the rotor should be replaced as well, but if I'm replacing the car in 6 months anyway, they can probably just get away with using this one, as long as I replace the brakes.

Brakes: $120.

Authorized. Gotta have working brakes.

As nice a car as I have, I really hate it right now...
Current Music: Showtime - Jenny Rebecca
sencollins on August 21st, 2003 04:17 pm (UTC)
I love cars, even crappy ones.
I say this because I'll be driving to So.Cal in a few minutes and really need the car to like me.

I'm really sorry.... I'm also sorry about the liar comment, it was just a joke, but you probably aren't laughing what with the mounting debt and all. On the positive side, you have a new place to live, no job you hate, and a gf we don't hate... I think you're doing better than you have in a while. =o)

There are times I would gladly pay the price of being a blue haired Demonic looking German just to be able to Bampf places...
lindasings on August 21st, 2003 11:11 pm (UTC)
Let's Think This Through...
So you have the option of paying for repairs now with the prospect of the car working okay for at least another year, or paying less now with the guarantee that there will be major repairs needed in 6 months. And you choose Option A because you'll be rolling in dough in 6 months and can easily afford a new car then. And you know this how????

The last time you were doing serious job hunting you went ahead and signed a lease on an expensive apartment because you were so certain to get a great job soon. When the great job didn't materialize, you were forced to accept a shitty job so you could pay the rent.

Now maybe you'll have a job in 6 months, maybe even sooner. But maybe not. By the time you have a job, you'll be drowning in debt, if you aren't already. But come next April (tax time!!), you think you'll be out of debt and have $10G saved up for a new car.

Right... pay for the damn struts.
Idtechnomonkey on August 22nd, 2003 12:54 am (UTC)
Let's not.
Bottom line. I can't even afford the alignment, much less the tires and brakes. That's what I can get away with now because I cannot survive without a car. I have no choice but to go $500 further into debt. But I CANNOT go $1000 further into debt.

There is no option. I can't pay for the damn struts, so I'm not.
lindasings on August 22nd, 2003 01:23 am (UTC)
Re: Let's not.
Sell me your bed.
Idtechnomonkey on August 22nd, 2003 10:28 am (UTC)
That's very kind, but doesn't make sense...
...since you paid for the bed in the first place. Unless you consider it having been a gift at the time (which is OK with me), it's already yours.
some guy: dismay (no teeth)self on August 22nd, 2003 05:35 pm (UTC)
I just don't understand how a year of living rent-free with a decent paying job and the express purpose of clearing your debts could leave you so thoroughly buried as when you started.

Granted, I did pretty much the same thing. But the debt I returned to is a good two digits lower than yours, and it was all career investments I should finally have time to make pay off now. Which is to say, my delusions are at least plausible. =)

I imagine this frustrates you even more than it does everyone else. And, I'm not sure what to tell you. You're already keeping tabs on what you spend, you've already got a budget. You just have to remember that each compromise builds exponentially on the previous ones.


Sorry to hear about the car.