Monday, December 18, 2006

Don't Tell Aunt Berta

When I moved to Indianapolis, I thought I could go car-less. As in, without an automobile. Sadly, thinking something and it actually happening, I've learned, are two different things.

So after a couple late cabs to the train station to go to Chicago (don't ask), I relented and decided to get a car. Aunt Berta (actually my mom's Aunt Berta, of Aunt Berta and Uncle RV who, coincidentally, traveled the country in an actual RV) had a big red car that she wasn't able to use, on account of the macular degeneration which will, with almost genetic certainty, claim my own vision in my 80s, if I make it that far. So we headed up to Michigan and the deal was done. [This car purchase was also the genesis of The Great License Branch Screw-Up of 2004.]
Anyway, the Big Red Car (convenient web-photographed stand-in pictured above), who has served me well for lo, these almost three years, is failing, bless her little heart. An unidentified schpilkes is lodged in her genekdegezoink, and she sometimes has trouble starting. Like, big trouble -- with sputtering and stalling and whumping.

So with the advent of the new job (oh yeah -- I GOT THE JOB!) I have decided that, in the three-to-four-month range, I shall purchase a new/different car. But I'm having trouble deciding what kind of car to get.

I've been thinking an SUV might be a good idea, but I also like the simplicty of an easy-to-drive, non-gas-guzzling normal car. N&S said that N's new SUV gets good mileage, though, so maybe that's in the cards. I think I've got it narrowed down to one of the following: the Jeep Liberty, the Nissan Murano, or the Ford Escape Hybrid. Or, knowing me, we're looking at going to Carmax and just buying the first thing I see that I think is pretty and/or cool.

Your mission, dear reader, is to disallow that from happening. Provide constructive comments if you like, e-mail links to helpful car research sites, track me down and tranq me before I drop 20 large on a used POS, whatever it takes. Help!


Anonymous said...

I drove the Jeep Liberty when I was looking for my new car (new to me that is) and I was unimpressed. I liked the interior, but it REALLY rides like a Jeep. If you hit a bump you better have your seatbelt on or your head may strike the ceiling. It was like being constantly jarred until I was afraid I might uneat on the steering wheel. My little CRV gets better gas mileage than S's car and I cannot say enough nice things about it. We should go do a test drive!

SSS said...

I've been seriously considering a car-free life again. There's a boatload of homes for sale in the Broadway neighborhood, and if I'm living downtown, maybe I could use public transportation to get up to St. Luke's from the neighborhood?

Must determine if this is doable... I'm going to miss a workshop at St. Luke's (while in Africa) about reducing your carbon footprint, and there's a Green movement afoot among some folks I deeply respect. There could be more to this adventure than we expected.