So Fred started talking about test-driving a Hyundai Accent late last week, and Saturday morning he decided it was time to go do it. After he spent the day working, he took a shower and we headed to Decatur. We took it for a drive, he decided he liked it, and we went inside to talk to the saleslady about how much he’d get for his SUV.

Now, here’s the thing. There’s little on this earth I hate more than all the baloney involved when you’re buying a car and trading in your old one and trying to get the most you can for your old vehicle and all that. It makes me want to rip my hair out and run screaming down the street. Somehow I had forgotten how much I loathe that, and then when we sat down and the saleslady had some guy come out to talk to us about how much Fred’s old car would be worth, I remembered and my heart sank.

And then the guy sat down to talk to us, and I turned into a pouty teenage brat. Because when it comes down to it, this whole thing was – in my opinion – Fred’s business and didn’t involve me and why on earth would I even need to pay attention. I noticed when the salesman sat down that there was some sort of crease across the top of his head – like a scar from an operation – and then I didn’t bother to look at him again while he talked and talked and talked.

I looked at my shoes. I checked out my fingernails. I re-read the last text message I’d gotten from Liz. I considered texting her back (and only didn’t because then she’d text me back, and when she calls or texts me, Beavis and Butthead start laughing (that’s the ringtone assigned to her) and I didn’t want to be THAT obvious. I picked lint off my pants. I glanced up at Fred once or twice.

“Is that all?” Fred said, in dismay when the guy named what they were willing to pay for Fred’s old car. “Kelley Blue Book is blahblahblah and blah-dy blah blah.”

“Well,” the guy said. “Blah blah blah. And then blah. But now, I’ll tell you what I’ll do. I’ll call Blah at our sister store and I’ll make sure I’m not missing something. I’ve been out of work for a little while. I got into a motorcycle accident and they put a lot of metal in my head, so it’s making me twitch – it’s not you that’s making me twitch! Ha! Ha! – and I want to make sure I’m giving you a good price.”

I couldn’t help it. My head shot up and I looked at the guy like:

and then I glanced at Fred, who looked like:

and we stared at each other like:

I can’t speak for Fred, but I know I was thinking “I hope that scar on his head doesn’t pop out and his brain doesn’t come sproinging at me, because then I’d have to bat it like a volleyball and I never was very good at volleyball.”

After more salespeak, wherein I sat in my seat, mesmerized by the scar on the guy’s head,

Fred asked if we could have a moment alone to speak, and then we talked about whether he really wanted to trade down from an SUV to a small car (yes, because it uses much less gas), and whether he liked the car. We went out to look at the car some more, and then we went back inside, and Fred told the saleslady he was afraid that going from an SUV to a small car would be too much of a shock, and then she suggested that we take the car for an extended test drive through Monday, and that way he could have some time to see what it would really be like, and he’d see whether he liked driving it to work and all that.

So we provided our license and insurance information to the lady, she wrote it all down, and we left Fred’s car at the dealership and left in the Accent.

I like the car – like it a LOT, actually, I drove it to Lowe’s yesterday and except for the fact that it’s a standard (I can drive a standard just fine, but prefer automatics; I tried to convince Fred that he’d be happier in an automatic, but he says he likes the “control” a standard gives him) I think it’s the bee’s knees. I told him I thought we should trade my Reno in for an Accent, and we could be dorks in matching cars (except that the one he’s been driving is a dark blue and I’d rather have the silvery sky blue), and I guess we’ll see about that.

Edited to add (May 2014) : Fred did keep the car after that weekend. I didn’t get a matching Accent, I kept my Suzuki Reno. Last year we traded in my Reno for his new truck, and I am currently driving the Accent. I HATE IT. I don’t like driving a standard, and the Accent has ZERO get up and go. I’m just biding my time until I can make a case for getting a new car.


Good news: Tina Louise got adopted over the weekend! Yay!

Next to go: Gilligan, possibly this week, depending on when room at the pet store comes available.


It’s a rough life, being a Toms.

Even a rougher life, being a Sugs.


2006: No entry.
2005: No entry.

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