The View From My Better Half

In case you were wondering what it’s like to be married to an inveterate buyer of crap cars (which is why you’re reading this, right?), here is the e-mail that my lovely, charming, and very forgiving wife sent to my friends and co-workers the day after I bought my current car:

So Dave officially bought another car… 1967 Pontiac Tempest (the base model of the GTO – for those non-car people). White car with OLD MAN GOLD INTERIOR!!!

Her emphasis, not mine.  So I happen to like classic interior colors, sue me.  She continues:

We found it at the Canfield swap meet Saturday and bought it from a guy from West Virginia. We met him in East Springfield, Ohio yesterday, which is about 55 miles southeast of Canton… trust me you are not missing anything.

I disagree.  East Springfield is missing lots of things.

These are the directions to turn on the car:

Cold start – pump the gas 8 times and then move the gear shifter all the way down past drive and then bring it up just a little bit past the “R” and then turn the key and it should start. It took Dave about 12 tries to get it running.

I would like to note that I eventually got the hang of it, and this issue was later fixed with the simple replacement of the park/neutral switch.  Notice that she doesn’t mention the hot start instructions, because I don’t think she expected it to run long enough to get hot.

The passenger door  – roll down the window, fiddle with the lock and eventually the door will open.

This has also been fixed, thank you very much.

Speedometer reads about 6 mph faster than your actual speed.

So I just go 6 mph faster.  Simple.

Right headlight burnt out.

Alright, now you’re nit-picking.

Radio doesn’t work.

Who needs a radio when you have the awe-inspiring sounds of cenozoic-era brakes and suspension components threatening to lock up or fall off and kill you at a moment’s notice?

Otherwise it drives pretty nice.  🙂

Gee, thanks for the vote of confidence.

When we got home Dave couldn’t get out of the driver’s side door because the lock was not fully unlocking. It is truly a Dukes of Hazzard car. Eventually Dave was able to get out of the car after about 4 minutes.

In the interests of full disclosure, I will admit that this still happens occasionally, with little warning.  Somehow the lock mechanism sticks in the inner door, and I can’t figure out where.  Still, “it drives pretty nice,” right?

This morning I was waiting in the driveway making sure that he got it started before he went to work and all I heard was clicking….DEAD BATTERY.

That is not too bad for only owning the car for 12 hours and 17 minutes. Really we are lucky that it made it home.

Look, the battery was only dead because the voltage regulator died and took the battery with it.  And I didn’t realize this on the way home because the car doesn’t have a working voltage gauge or warning light.

OK, so maybe I was lucky to make it home.  But I stand by my purchase, flaws and all.  Isn’t that what makes cars fun – the (potentially life-threatening) flaws?  Sadly, I wish I could say that this was the first time I forced my beautiful, intelligent (and did I mention very forgiving?) wife to suffer through one of my automotive purchases.  And I’m sure it’s not the last.


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