Revealed: The Sad Life of a Used Car
is adult right off. No kid stuff. I think that my being a member of HubPages for almost eight years garners me right to be bold with you about this piece. I like using the word, "piece," because it sounds very professional. This commentary is not to be taken lightly, and if you step out of your home tomorrow and find yourself in the presence of a Used Car Salesman (or person), then I will ask you one thing: Do NOT come my way. Act like we've never met.
I Want You
to know that I am not a whore, prostitute or call girl. I know my value and if you are tempted to "ride" me, then you, my friend with the lusty face, will pay me dearly, so be forewarned. I am not going to do the Two-Step, Ch-Cha, or the zesty Tango and you will not wear a single, long-stem rose in your mouth as hour heads meet to the side and you slide your feet and mine back and forth to some seedy dance floor, so get ready. I will respect you if I get the respect I deserve. But if you want to play rough, friend, come at me at anytime.
Don't get me wrong. I want to be up-front. I can recall the time when I rolled off the line and let me tell you--there were senators, governors, even a few United States Presidents who sat up and took notice when I rolled down the street so graceful, stylish, and not a crack or blemish in my paint. But my bumpers, oh yeah, my bumpers were so shiny and attractive that every male on each side of the sidewalk inside the restaurants and diners. It was like these guys couldn't get enough of my bumpers. Oh, don't you think for a minute that I never took care of myself. Hogwash! I was up at the crack of dawn and my motor was humming before the sun came up. My owner was so proud of me that he took out a second mortgage just to build a garage beside his home---a dry, warm place where I could sleep.
And during those loving years, the wife was never the wise about "my" relationship with my owner and those bratty kids! My owner could get them an ice cream cone and these two hooligans had it smeared on the seat and carpet. That really got my goat. I didn't speak to my owner for a month. But he knew what was wrong. I had to respect him for sneaking out many nights (while the wife slept) just to come in the garage and apologize to me for his mean kids.
Then things changed. I thought it strange that as "we" were heading to work that when he stopped at traffic light at Main and Lincoln Streets, the light "we" had stopped many years prior to that morning, but I pretended that nothing was wrong. I think my owner did also. Or least I thought he didn't think anything was wrong with me because I was well taken care of. Only his best when it came to the brand of gasoline, oil, and other automotive products. I always loved him for going that extra mile for me.
One Thursday when my owner had the day off, "we" rolled to the Service Dept., the same place that I can visited many times, but this time was different. My owner talked quietly to the head mechanic "Jim," while I just stayed in the air on something called a Rack that left every inch of my Under Carriage showing. Talk about embarrassing. I was not one of those cars who let anyone look underneath them. And the hood? Forget about it. That is MY property, some jerks found out the hard way when my hood "accidentally" slammed on their heads sending them in a dead run.
I don't mean to be melancholy, but that very day when my owner left me in the professional hands with "Jim," the head mechanic while he walked to the nearby diner to eat a bite and get some coffee. I can just tell you that (even with me editing this sharply) I was abused worse than when my owner was dating the wife. That man, although he fell in love with me, turned me every way that could be turned while he asked for more. And being an obedient automobile, I kept my mouth shut and let him have his way and that is really all I need to say--but I have to believe that my owner and "Jim," were in the same college frat and learned so many of those taboo things that only happen between the sexes.
When "Jim" slowly let me down, I noticed that he had a sympathetic look on his face. I knew something was wrong. My owner returned in a short time and the two stood with their backs to me and I tried to make-out what they were talking about. Hey, I had a lot of miles on me. My systems were not in the best of shape.
On the way home the owner and me never said a word. I noticed a sadness in his eyes that can only be detected in the eyes of lovers. And when my owner got the right time, I knew him well enough that I was going to be told what was wrong, but you know shiny "girls" with pointy bumpers. We worry about everything. I remember when my owner and I first got together in the moonlight near a sparkling brook. The night was perfect. I knew then that I would never experience love like that every again.
But with all of that heated moonlight passion, I went for one month without having a fill-up. My owner was so stupid when he was young and so was I. We lived for today. Rode on a lot of streets and shared something that the most-devout married couples could experience. Yes, time became my enemy and all within one or two visits to "Jim" who was careful to replace a shock that was going out on the right side and when my owner heard that, I knew that I was home free!
Not so. That was on a Friday afternoon. I remember it. My owner and his "wife" Pyew, took me to get a full body wash and wax and I had to wonder why didn't my owner do this? That was his job. My owner was acting really strange when he and his "wife" left to go across a car lot that had something he had talked to her about. I knew it. Another car. Figures. I gave him the best miles of my life and now he is over there kicking the tires of some auto's named Limo, which looked to expensive for this girl's tires. But my owner was still my owner and now, I began to think that the "wife" wanted a car for her own. Yes!
No! This part breaks my heart and maybe yours as well. The next morning, Saturday, the perfect day for couples to eat breakfast at their favorite restaurant and to Trade Cars. Those two words cannot be put into proper index. When I heard owners of other automobile say that it was time to trade cars, I laughed at them. What my owner and me have is good. And I might even say solid. Trading Cars, the phrase can be equated with the ugliness of Oriental Flesh Dens where a lonely car owner, right there in the city, he goes to one of these Sin Pits and when he hands over the money he had planned to buy his wife a dress . . .the Flesh Den rolls out a flashy, stylish convertible with Red seat covers. You know the old saying about the color Red when worn by females.
And the lonely guy sits and lays in every known position a worldly man can be while he finds danger and excitement behind this Cheap Car's Wheel. He is not an abusive man. Once, I was told, that he broke down and cried as his hands gripped the steering wheel so strong that the Cheap Car almost died. No charges were filed on the lonely business man or Cheap Car.
I remember the very Saturday morning when my owner walked slowly toward my garage. I sensed that he was coming, so I looked my best. I was even dressed in my best Fender Skirts, the ones that he liked. I knew what was coming and I was not going down without a back-fire. This old girl has been places, done things, and what I am about to see is not to be read to any child Under The Age of 14.
My owner walked ever so slowly around me as he whispered something that I couldn't make out, but I did catch a tear on his cheek and his lips mumbling something that sent chills up my cooling system. It was time. The time that I should have broken my owner about, but gave in to the same Automotive Selfishness that plagues a lot of used cars on the lot to this day. My owner slowly opened the door, slid underneath the wheel (that I shined just for him), I couldn't look him in the eye for I felt his body shake and I knew then than our time together was soon to be gone.
He carried us to the car lot that I had seen him kick some tires of Limo's and those crude 4x4 trucks that brutish men like to own and ride in the mud. Not this gal. She was never rode in some mud hole while my owner laughed and made fun of me feeling out of place. No, sir. I kept to my guns. My owner said in such broken speech, "girl, (choke, choke,) I am afraid that (choke, gasp) I have to (gulp, gasp) Trade Cars . . ." and then bent over and cried his eyes out on my dash.
He had not turned off my engine so the car lot owner could take a test drive (just like a jerk of a man) so I would be given more than a fair trade on something my owner was pointing at . . .I couldn't believe my headlights! My owner was lusting after a Corvette convertible, black and very sporty. And me? I kept my pride about myself. I didn't try to hide the small knicks in my body that my owner had given me with his lawn mower throwing rocks at me. Now I ask you. What woman would stand and let her lover throw rocks by some gawky machine that buzzed? Not many.
And so, it was over. My owner came back and said the most-tender goodbye's that I had ever heard. He traded for that flashy Corvette and I even looked at him with pride as he drove off the car lot. I just hope that he knows that "I" wasn't built in Detroit when cars were cars and the people building them put their pride in every nut and bolt before the car was shipped out to the dealers.
I had a great run. I can't lie about that. But in the years to come, I was forced to sit in all types of weather--torrential rain, hail, freezing ice, snow and blistering temperatures in summertime. I did all of this without one complaint. This gal kept her pride.
Of course, in a certain length of time, my owner forgot me. I know he did and there was this one time when he and his "wife" ate in the restaurant where I was sitting in the car lot on the second row with several signs taped on me reading: "Cheap!" "Take a Ride on 'Er Now" things that guys write in the bathrooms of schools. My former owner did see me. I knew it. We had "that" moment of headlight-to-eye moment. I knew then that I had been a faithful automobile and a prideful automobile.
Sadly, with time and economy, I was parked almost to the back to where all of the "Cheap Cars" are parked and looking sleazy. Some car lot owner. Cannot even keep his seediest cars clean. But in the months to come, several guys drove me down town and on the interstate--with and without a family. And I did my best to make them happy.
But no car owner like my former owner has made the grade with me, so I just sit and stare out of my grill and lure them to sit in my driver's seat and notice how clean "I" kept the inside clean enough to eat lunch off of there. And I have had big guys, little guys, pure slobs, looking me over and that smoking while they drive. I cannot stand it. But I endured it. I have something the rest of these "tootsies" do not have: Pride. Self-Respect. Even when I was traded for and the jerk took me back for not running as fast as I used to. Jerk!
So, I am still there. At the car lot. But know this: I am NOT cheap.
___________________________March 6, 2018
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© 2018 Kenneth Avery