Sunday, May 17, 2009

Weekend Car and RSVP Date Wrap


I purchased a new car. I've never owned a new car, only ever used ones. I didn't even really want a new car, my existing one is fine. I have a 1999 Subaru Liberty Wagon (puchased in 2002) and in the seven years I've owned it, I've serviced it once a year, bought some new tyres, and I think I checked the oil level once. I'm not a car person. I drive cars until they break down, but this one has never broken down and purrs like a kitten. I mentioned to a mate last year that if I ever bought a new car it would be another Liberty. He mentioned this to a mate of his who worked at Subaru, and the stalking started. Months later, they made me an offer I couldn't refuse (end of financial year runout, plus economic recession, plus mates' rates, plus turning 40 this year and wanting some retail therapy equals buying a new car).

The negotiations took place on the phone and on email over the course of a few months, but Saturday was the signing of the contracts (the car won't be delivered until July).

I was to meet the salesguy at 10am, and I figured it would take me five minutes. Oh no. Oh no. TWO HOURS. All I wanted to do was sign, but no, we had to have coffee, we had to talk, small talk, car talk, he had to run me through the features, I had to watch a video, I had to meet other people, meet the boss, meet the receptionist, if his mother was there I would have had to meet her too, and they had to teach me about car care and Subaru technology and they even offered me a test-drive of a test-car and were confused as to why I said no.

Some of the conversations were meaningless.

Salesguy: Mate, I've thrown in a free sunroof for you.
Me: Oh, no thanks. I had one on a Mazda years ago and never used it.
Salesguy: But it's a free sunroof!
Me: I had a cancer ripped out of my face last year. I don't want the sun on me, and in the winter, I don't want the wind on me.
Salesguy: Well, you don't have to open it.
Me: Just give me one without a sunroof. It'll save you money.
Salesguy: Oh, not really. See the car we've allocated for you has a sunroof.
Me: So I'm getting it anyway? If I want a car without a sunroof, it will cost me more?
Salesguy: Yeah.

Then, after I signed, he congratulated me! Like, we stood up, he beamed, and patted me on the arm and offered his hand as if I had just been made the President. It's a fucking car! And then some very hot chick came to congratulate me as well, and said, "You have a NEW CAR!" and it sounded like I was on some game show and I was waiting for balloons to drop. She said, "Are you excited?" and I said, "No, I'm in debt, and all I have is a slightly cleaner version of what I already drive. I'm not excited at all. I'm 40." She hated me.

This car better be good.

(PS: They were nice people, and I don't want to come across as hating them personally - just the process bugged me. I'm not a car person.)

Saturday Night

Visited a childhood friend who has just had her third baby, and I was meeting the baby (4 months old). She handed it to me, and left it with me for like an hour. The first five minutes I was thinking, "God, how long do I have to hold this chimp?" and the next 55 minutes I was thinking, "Wow this kid is cute. Look at him, he's smiling and sucking on my buttons! I want one! I want one!"

Oh I'm clucky. I pity my next girlfriend.

Which brings me to...


Coffee date with a girl from, to be called E-bird. I reckon I read through 300 profiles, and E-bird was my favourite and so she was the only one I initially contacted and corresponded with, but I subsequently made contact with a standby (Em79 - plucked from Melba's researched list) and we will also be meeting for a coffee next week.

But I was very excited about meeting E-bird. We only had an hour, I was nervous, she was nervous, and here's the rundown.


* She's very smart.
* She's well-travelled.
* She's attractive.
* She's very witty.
* She's an ex-smoker (which is good for me - I rarely take advice about smoking from never-smokeders)
* She has a very good job
* She plays netball (I like sporty people)


* She's originally from Adelaide, so she's potentially a serial-killer.
* I think she was taller than me, and I'm 6 foot exactly. She was maybe the same height. Is that a problem? No. Yes. No. Tom Cruise didn't seem to mind. Did Nicole Kidman?
* I think she saw me as a scrawny pale 40 year old that lived in the bush and she'll have little more to do with me.

I'm going to ask for a second date, this with time with added alcohol, and I shall keep you all updated.


the projectivist said...

it's a shame about those balloons not dropping down, Perseus. i think that might have been the icing on the cake of your new car negotiations.

and how lovely to hear of your Saturday night date-night with LadyE-Bird. was she wearing towering heels? did you notice? perhaps for your next date she will wear flats? relinquishing you of your TomCruiseism.

patchouligirl said...

I bought a VW Transporter new for $31K in 1997. It was paid off by work on a lease/car allowance arrangement so it caused me no pain. I wouldn't buy a new car again - for what you get its better to get something 3 - 5 yrs old. They reckon they lose $5K or something like that in value as soon as you drive them out of the showroom.

Re echick's height, dont worry about it. As my 5'6" husband said to me 'we're the same height lying down'. You can use that if it helps but I think #3 might be the killer.

Lewd Bob said...

Projectivist, I wish you hadn't drawn my attention to your lower caseism. I now suffer from uncontrollable tics wen I read your comments.

I've never been able to get interested in cars either. Or the status that people attach to them. Fucking hell, who GIVES A FUCK if you drive an Audi? Only other Audi wankers or, worse, the losers that aspire to drive Audis.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Two hours to buy a car, that's about average.

The Mrs is from Adelaide and she's never tried to kill me once.

Lord knows, I've given her enough reasons.

Perseus said...

Projectivist - nope, she was in flat shoes.

PG - I figure that if she's the same height, the genitals will be aligned.

Bob - the 'free sunroof' reminded me of your enraging experience with the 'free delivery' of pizza, but offered a 'discount' if you picked the pizza up yourself.

Ramon - Does this also mean that the in-laws are interstate, and surely this could be an advantage? Andromeda 3.0 and I lived for a few years only 100m from her family, and that had some advantages, but it did involve a culture of her family coming into the house without knocking.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Pers. the in-laws are several hundred kilometres away, which is all to the good.

They're also Liberal voters.

Mr E Discharge said...

Fucking hell, who GIVES A FUCK if you drive an Audi? Only other Audi wankers or, worse, the losers that aspire to drive Audis.
Oh deary, deary me.

Just how does one begin to explain an orgasm to a virgin?

wari lasi said...

I feel like I've bought shit loads of cars. Mostly for the company, or the missus. We recently bought a new Nissan Murano for 60K, and she's in love with the thing. This is a lady who got a 323i for her 21st birthday. We bought our eldest a 2 year old Alfa at the same time. While she was waiting for the Murano to be delivered she drove the Alfa and after two weeks was seriously considering cancelling the Nissan and buying an Alfa. There's something about European cars, they're nice. I think Mr E put it perfectly above. Then again, I drive a land cruiser here.

I simply will not tolerate the bullshit from the showroom staff. Do I want coffee? No. Do I want to talk to the chick who sells all the after market shit like window tinting, rust proofing, paint protection etc etc? No. It's easier to treat them with disdain these days as I'm normally at least 10 years older than them.

E girl? I hope your body language didn't give it away that you felt she was out of your league. You didn't smoke in front of her did you?

squib said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Car: I hating listening to salespeople's 'advice'. Far better to research the car you want on the internet first, then enter the showroom fully armed.

I further hate the way salespeople can appear absolutely convinced the product they're selling is the shit hottest thing you ever laid eyes on, and you should be ecstatic to be buying it. This is why I could never succeed as a salesman. I'd be telling customers the pros AND cons of whatever I was selling.

Face cancer: Honestly PQ, you will insist on going naked in the Mallee dessert, won't you?

Baby: You're so lucky you got one of the cute, button-sucking ones and not one of the puking, crapping, crying ones - oddly, the former turn into the latter with little warning.

Adelaid: Isn't Ramon also from Adelaide? The Insertnamehere family sounds rather ominous - no wonder so many backpackers disappear around Preston.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Backpackers in Preston Boogey?

The only tourist sights we have are a great number of elderly Greek men, the occasional goth and many, many methodone addicts.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Oh and Desci.

Perseus said...

I was rarely a sunglasses wearer. Since the cancer thing (it was at the top of my nose, right next to my right eye) I have become obsessed with sunglasses, and, I put sunblock on my face even when overcast. When I skinny-dipped, fish died from the amount of sunblock I put in the river (in combination with the glare).

Wari - I actually got sucked in and bought the tinting/paint protection thing as an addition. Did I fuck up?

Squib - Dunno. I'm about to find out though because I have asked for a second date, and am awaiting reply.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Pers, we got the window tinting thrown in as part of the package when we bought our car and said "fuck off" to the paint protection.

Perseus said...

Yay! She has agreed to a second date!

Perseus said...

Ramon, they assured me paint-protection was essential for a black car, and I was sucked in by this line.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

No offence Pers. but I think they saw you coming.

Second date, eh?

Don't fuck it up.

Perseus said...

If there's a way to fuck it up, no doubt I'll find it.

wari lasi said...

Ramon, they assured me paint-protection was essential for a black car, and I was sucked in by this line.

Mrs L's car is black, looks fantastic clean but gets dirty very quickly. It came with a factory tint and I refused to even speak to the lady (girl) selling the rust/paint protection. It's not that I feel like I'll give in, it's just that they're so pushy that you have to be rude to them to get them to lay off. And I'm mostly a very polite person.

Ramon's right. Second date. Don't fuck it up. Reformed smoker - Don't smoke. And whatever you do, don't get pissed.

kitten said...

The constant wearing of sunblock will lead to a vitamin D deficiency. It is not recommended.

Perhaps this has contributed to your current malaise?

Ironically, exposure to sunlight and increased levels of vitamin D have been proven to reduce the incidence of cancer, and to aid in treating it (ref Wikipedia).

Perseus said...

Yes. I had this massive checkup last year and got them to check for everything, and all they came up with was that I had a Vitamin D deficiency. The doctor said, "Get some sun," and I said, "But the cancer Doctor said to me, "Don't go in the sun!"

Fucken stupid human-body.

Leilani said...

When we got our car (second hand) a few years ago we decided to get the windows tinted and used the Tint Professor. I always wondered if he did his PhD with the Dashboard Doctor from Coburg.

Good news on the second date.

I don't want to state the obvious but it seems a little bit unbalanced to go to great lengths to avoid cancer on your face while still giving your lungs a good chance of developing the disease.

Perseus said...

Leilani - I think everyone here knows that logic is not my best suit.

I'm all about process. Results don't interest me.

Anonymous said...

Seriously kitten - I don't think Vitmain D deficiency is much of a problem in this country. We get plenty enough from going out in the early morning and late afternoon sun without sunblock - the middle of the day the UV is too intense.

Melba said...

Re Murano, I have some from Venice.

We got a new car and said fuck off to tinting etc. But we got the heated leather seats. Mmmmmm.

And Mr E Discharge. Your analogy is flawed. Virgins can and do have lots of orgasms. Obviously everyone else left it for me to point that out.

Mr E Discharge said...

There is such a thing as being too literal,Melba.

Melba said...

Not when it comes to virgins, Mr E Discharge. They need representation.

Puss In Boots said...

I've bought 2 cars and a bike, all of them new. I like new cars. Mine seem to have held their value as well. I was able to sell them on after 3 years for a loss of $3k and $4k on sale price respectively. Also, I have always stuck to the thought that a used car was someone else's problem, or they wouldn't have wanted to sell it, and I don't need to buy something that's already a problem.

The sales process is a pain in the arse though. With my last car, it took half a day to buy the damn thing, even though I'd requested to have the papers drawn up before I got there. It was tedious. And I don't drink coffee, so they were getting increasingly desperate every time I said I didn't want one. It was very odd.

Re E-Bird, yay! I'm very happy you've got a second date! You must have made a better impression than you thought you did.

Anonymous said...

Yes. I had this massive checkup last year and got them to check for everything

Perseus, if you don't mind me asking, is this something you simply asked to have done? I recently went to see a doctor (my first trip in over a decade) hoping to get some sort of thorough checkup. The doctor told me that it would be a waste of resources to do any kind of tests on someone who didn't have a specific complaint. I have no idea if that was a fair call by the doctor or not.

Melba said...

Alex, I've had a couple of similar check ups; blood tests, complete skin checks etc. No specific complaints, just possible neuroses, but have heard too many stories about niggling things that were ignored that turned out to be really bad things.

Get another doctor. They're talking about how men should be looking after their health more, I'd say your doctor is being slack, and to fob you off like that is not good.

There's nothing wrong with requesting a complete physical health check once a year or two over a certain age. Not sure where you live, but a friend's husband paid $1K out of his pocket to have a really really thorough check up at the Epworth. Heart scans etc, not sure about other scans. To me that's a little extreme, but that's the sort of thing that's available.

There's a line between being ridiculous and cautious. I would say that your request is reasonable. What incredible resources are being used up in running a few blood tests and other standard health-check tests? You're not asking for CT and MRI scans are you?

Anonymous said...

You're not asking for CT and MRI scans are you?

No. I've never had any sort of general health check before and don't know what they entail. I was sort of expecting the doctor to take a couple vials of blood and send them off to a lab somewhere for analysis. Instead, she asked me if I drank or smoked (I don't) and then told me I was probably fine.

Perseus said...

Yep, get another Doctor, Alex.

I hadn't been for about ten years as well, probably more, but the cancer thing made me panic about what other ailments I may have had. Go to a Doctor that you have to make an appointment for, you know, a real one, a family doctor, and then demand they test you for everything. I did exaggerate for effect though, and complained of lethargy, restlessness, heart pain, chest pain, said I took lots of drugs and drank too much, smoked all day (that bit was true), had the cancer concern, unprotected sex concerns and a few other things. They sent me to pathology and took a few samples, I ran on machines with things wired to me as well.

I had a Vitamin D deficiency.

patchouligirl said...

You can focus too much on this stuff - if you feel ok you probably are ok. Doctors are happy to put you on a merry-go-round of tests and appointments if you can pay for it and can't think of anything better to do with your time. The single best thing you can do for your health is to stop smoking. Do that first.

A lady I know in her 60's has had eye problems (not sure exactly what) but the doctor blamed the degeneration of her eyes on too many years not wearing sunglasses. So I resolved to wear them - bought three pairs of $2 sunnies (as I know I always lose them and refuse to invest more than that). Jack broke first pair in week 1. The other two pairs I can locate half the time. Its only been a month so I expect they'll be long gone by Spring.

Lewd Bob said...

And Mr E Discharge. Your analogy is flawed.Nevertheless, I'm interested in furthering the analogy.

Firstly Mr E, I apologise if you drive an Audi. You're neither a wanker or a loser as far as I can tell. I used Audi as an example. But you know the type of guy I mean. Whether it's an Audi, a beamer or a hotted up commodore, the intent is often there to be noticed and admired.

And I have to say I'm not a virgin. I've been with prostitutes. Let me explain. I've driven other people's prestige cars. I drove a BMW X5 which cost the owner $110,000. I have also had reason to drive a Ford Territory which cost $35,000. The difference? $75,000.

Perseus said...

I drove a $150,000 Jaguar once, and I must say that its suspension was amazing going over speed humps. My current car, which cost me $16,000 back in 2002, is not nearly as good over the speed humps.

And so I ask, is it worth an extra $134,000 to glide over a speed hump instead of slowing down a bit?

kitten said...

Boogey, they estimate that 60-70% of Australians have some sort of vitamin d deficiency.

Melba said...

Everybody confuses you with Boogeyman, Perseus! It's happened again.

I've also read/heard that Vit.D deficiency is a growing concern in this country.

Perseus said...

No, Kitten's comment was indeed addressed to Boogeyman. We're hard to get confused. The term 'chalk and cheese' was invented just for us.

I think it's me and Ramon that get confused sometimes, but that confounds me because he is a cunt cunt and I am just a cunt.

Anonymous said...

Kitten - Fair enough, but I suspect those figures are somewhat exaggerated. It would be a much bigger problem with dark skinned and the elderly, and nowhere near the problem they have in the UK.

Melba - Perhaps Perseus is also a devilishly handsome troubadour?

Melba said...

Oh, you're right on both counts Perseus.

Anyway, it's all ok now then.

Does he have a big nose, Boogeyman, or would that be you?

And I'm forced to state here that I think Ramon getting rid of his Neil Young sideburns is VERY ill-advised and I swear, I think Mrs INH should swap hubbies with me. I like hair but Clokes doesn't.

On him that is. Not me.

Oh, fiddlesticks.

kitten said...

I leave work in the dark. I dont go outside during the day, so I dont get any sunshine all week.

Plus both my moisturiser and foundation have an spf factor. Most of them do these days.

I bet I have a vitamin D deficiency too.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

What, are you a professional vampire, kitten?

kitten said...

No, just a professional.

I should really stop having lunch in my office, and go outside more.

Puss In Boots said...

Outside is overrated, Kitten. I think this is the first time in about 10 years that I've had a tan. And it sucks. I look like I'm permanently wearing a t-shirt.

Raven said...

Speaking of cunt cunts, whatever happened to Skel?

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Skel is now writing for Crikey.

Raven said...

Thanks Ramon. Yes, I read crikey.I was more wondering about his absence on the blogosphere.

Ramon Insertnamehere said...

Long story, Raven.

Best not to inquire too deeply.

Raven said...

Fair enough :)