About a year ago it came time for Peggy and me to trade in both our vehicles and get new Toyotas - Camry for her, Tacoma for me. With a precision that even TV's Monk would admire, we bought the car and truck on the same day some years back, so they go for service at the same time, run out of gas more or less in unison, and everything's on an even keel. Being Toyotas, of course, they hardly need much in the way of elaborate maintenance. So, again, as last autumn approached, I was looking at the pickup truck ads the way John McCain would eye up a primary election back in the day...all wistful, and "can I afford that?"
And then the economy went kablooie. Notice that, of late, it's always late August/September when the ship really hits the sand...Hurricanes Andrew, 1992, Katrina, 2005, and Isabel, 2003...the stock and bond market crash, 2008, flooding in Dundalk this year and also in the Philippines, and of course, the ineffable events of 9/11/2001. So last September didn't seem like a propitious time to invest a lot of money into two new vehicles, and we didn't, preferring instead to sink a couple G's into rehabbing the old reliables with new tires, brake linings, and a little Windex for the windshields.
Now...are things looking a little better? We had Cash for Clunkers, which for all the love I have for BHO sounded an awful lot like a game show, with Jay Mohr in a powder-blue tux, handing out keys to new Buicks. Dealers are making deals like you never heard of before, and I'm just darting around trying to use up these new tires. Everybody else has GPS now, and even though I hardly ever go anyplace I haven't been sixteen times already, I would like to have the thrill of someone telling me to "turn left" in a crisp British accent. Maybe I could hire Mick Jagger, Jr., to sit there and voice it for me.
I might not know everything, but don't you have to figure there must be a Mick Jagger, Jr.?