Chuckwagon 2.0

Tonight was errand night. Plan was to get a bunch of stuff out of the way that is time-sensitive. Main goal is to prodeal a kayak rack before the ERBA season is over. (It’s not over till the end of Sept, but I need to act fast in case things don’t move along as quickly as I’d hope.) My car lease is up in Feb, which means they’ll probably call me for a pull-ahead promo in Dec-ish, which means I need to figure out which car I need to buy the new rack for. Another Versa or will I want something different? Chris at work has a 17’ boat on top of her Mini Cooper so I’m not worrying about size. Still was curious about what they have at the dealer and options even though I was 90% sure I wanted another Versa. Because boo for change.

The plan for tonight was to go up to the Nissan dealer in Woburn and check out their fleet, decide what car I’d ultimately buy in Dec, go up to REI and figure out which rack I’d want, and hit Stride Rite on the way home and get Eliana a pair of shoes since the extra employee discount ends next week—all things I need to do kinda now.

I made it as far as Woburn and bought a car.

I went in looking for Brian whom I spoke at length with months ago in anticipation of getting a car from this Kelly Nissan as opposed to the one in Beverly where I’ve gotten my last two cars. The last purchase was less than pleasant and Beverly is about as inconvenient for me as it gets.

I’ll spare a lot of the grim details that I could go on for hours about, but long story short, I got screwed out of excise tax with my last lease. They charged me a full year for the one I returned (in Feb) and the one I purchased and did not prorate the one I returned. Dealer told me they’d reimburse me. They were mistaken. I went to Brian with questions about this to make sure this wouldn’t happen again. Seriously, going from one lease to another was nightmarish and I couldn’t imagine people just dealt with this whenever they re-leased. So I found out all the details about why this happened, most which I knew from all the phone calls with Nissan Finance. In the end, he said, the dealership was stupid to not just cut me a check for my loss in order to keep a long-time customer. (Between me and the rest of my family, we’ve bought over 10 cars from this place.) He said that since I’d be put in a new car around Dec, that kinda fixes the problem. If they charged me a full year for the first one, I’d only be out a month’s worth of the cost. OK, that’s nice, but that’s a Band-Aid fix. What if I have a lease that ends mid-year or at the beginning of the year like my last one? He said, “Yeah, ideally you just have to make sure it’s toward the end of the year.” That wasn’t the final answer. He was just saying that would help avoid all the wasted time and paperwork if I felt like just eating the cost of the tax since it wouldn’t be much.

ANYway, I went in today and Brian isn’t there. He moved to FL. Le sigh. I have to re-tell this whole mess to this other kid. He was nice enough, but he’s new. I tell him the whole thing and tell him I’m mainly here to see if I eventually want another Versa or something else so I can go and buy my car rack today.

New guy calls another guy over to talk more about excise taxes and other things. He’s like, “When is your lease up?” I’m like, “Feb, but I’m assuming I’m going to get called for a deal in Dec.” He’s like, “How about now?” I’m really not needing one now. I just want to find out how much of a hassle I’m going to be involved in if I lease or buy in Dec.

We talked further and I said I’d check out what they had. They had one more Versa on the lot brand new. It didn’t have all the features I wanted. Never did I think I’d consider a used car, but they had a few on the lot so I took a look. They all had like 2000 mi or less on them. Hmm. What’s the price difference? Considerable. And fully loaded. Hmm.

We went back in and discussed some more. OK, what are you going to do for me? Beverly dealership, as obnoxious as they are to deal with, gives me ridiculous deals which is why I’m still with them. How badly do you want to get rid of this car? How badly do you want to do it now?

By now I’ve been there at least an hr. I haven’t eaten. I’m exhausted and getting hangry. He said they’d pay off 3 months of my lease. What else? Beverly would do more. The whole theme of the evening was how I got screwed out of my excise tax. He offered to cut me a check for half my excise tax for this year that was still owed. More. They threw in a 125k warranty. I want an oil change package like the other place gives me. He said he couldn’t, but could give me one. OK fine.

We ended there and I waited while he went thru the paperwork in the back. Then he came back all dejected-looking. “There was one thing I forgot.” “Oh?” “The disposition fee for the lease. We can’t cover it.” “They said it wouldn’t matter if I leased again or bought. It would be waived.” “Seems only if you lease or buy new.”

Oh noooooo. This changes things. We’d just gone thru the finance details of if I bought this car or that car, if I leased or bought. We narrowed it down to this used car on the lot. If I’m paying another $350 or so, maybe I’d want something different now. I was ultimately going to get a car. I had to by Dec. He was dead set on sealing the deal tonight though. I was like, “No, no. I need more time to think then. Can you hold it till Wed while I think it over?” I surely didn’t want the new one on the lot. They would have to get it from another dealership. If I’m owning, I’m not settling. I was about to walk out. He’s like, “Wait a minute,” and walked back. A couple min later, he came back and was like, “Manager says we’ll cover the disposition fee.” “That’s more like it. Let’s get this done. I have an hr ride home.”

While we were in the little room signing everything, he realized I had five months left of my lease and not three even though we had both said that a couple times. They covered that, too.

So yay. In the end, I got a 2015 Versa Note with only 362 miles on it, practically new. Only been owned by them as their loaner car. “Woodchuck” grey, my fav, like my first Versa and dark interior. Fully-loaded. Dash is almost identical to the one I have now and everything feels exactly the same. And I’m paying $6/mo less than I currently am.

I told them to make my stay worth it and they didn’t disappoint. Only thing I’d have them change is stop calling me “young lady” (My face must’ve gotten loud because he stopped after the 2nd time), and stop shaking my hand. He reached out to shake my hand after almost every head nod. I hate hands. They’re dirty. Once is more than enough. And the poor kid whose sale got totally hijacked by guy #2 was so trying to make small talk. And we know how well I do with small talk. What is it, a yellow ribbon you tie on your dog to indicate “not friendly”? I need one of those. Please stop talking to me. I need food and sleep.

And that’s my Monday. Got nothing done I set out to do. But at least I don’t have to go car shopping in the dead of winter now.

Venty like a Starbucks coffee.


First a little background. I’ve been driving a whole lot more lately in hopes to get my license this summer. This leads to another story of why I don’t have it yet. In short, no motivation.

And now for the long version. Some people get cars for their graduation or college graduation or get a car when they turn 16. I didn’t. Not bitter about that tho, seriously. But this just means, I am poor and can’t afford one myself. Each time I have the hopes of maybe getting one, something goes wrong, for instance my lay off in Dec. Therefore, whether I get my license or not, I’m still without transportation. Same thing either way = an unmotivated me.

Add to this non-motivation the fact that any effort I make involves being in a car with mother in tow. So let’s say my motivation level was at 0; now it’s plummeted into the ground.

Thing about my mother that results in a good 90% of our arguments is that she talks A LOT. Now, I know I do on occasion, and I have a lot of friends that do, but I swear this is really different. She is the most verbose person I have ever known; the kind of person that can’t answer a yes-or-no question in one word to save her life. Also the kind of person who, if allowed, will talk your ear off first thing in the morning, meaning 6 a.m. kind of early. And a good majority of what she has to say is about nothing. So for as long as I can remember, I’ve pointed these things out to her, for instance, don’t engage me in conversation about nothing early in the morning. After all these years, she just recently got it.

So as of recently I’ve been driving with Mom. After almost a year they finally got the little hooptie fixed. So I get to drive around in this casket on wheels with no AC and a front seat that’s left me with a bad back since I started driving it. So I prep myself before the first drive a few weeks ago. I try to tell her in the nicest way possible to not be obnoxious. Not in those words exactly. I explain it’s fine to tell me if I’m doing something wrong but I don’t want to talk about just nothing. It’ll just aggravate me and behind the wheel all cramped up and hot is the last place I want aggravation. So she gives me like a “hmmmf” kinda noise. Mind you, I have to explain this to her way in advance.

Sidenote: Strange how the golden rule doesn’t usually work in my house. The things I expect people to do to me seem to offend when I do it to them. Ex: If I’m talking and you’re not listening, please tell me so I can stop talking to no one. If I do that to Mom, she gets pissed.

Back to our story. So a few weeks ago, I start driving with her. Aside from the heat and the back cramps, it goes well. No disagreements. No verbal diarrhea. Nothing. So here I am thinking, this may actually work out. Weeks go by and she’s becoming the woman I know that I hate to drive with.

Here’s what happened yesterday that set me off. It was dim and raining lightly. I’m driving home from Bradford through Haverhill. (I forgot to mention that my little death mobile has headlights about as strong as a penlight.) My mother has bad night vision. Because of this, of course this must mean that I do too. I’m seeing just fine. The only problem that happens sometimes is that I can’t see the lines in the road ’cause they’re a bit faded, but I’m still on my half of the road. It’s raining lightly and she wants me to put on my wipers. I say, “No, because it’ll make things worse and I won’t be able to see.” It’s just sprinkling at this point. I quickly turn them on for a second to prove this and the windshield goes blurry ’cause there’s not enough rain. Oh and the wipers screech like nails on a chalkboard. So I’m like, “SEE?” and turn them off. After a little bit, it starts raining a little more but not like really raining. My mom is not happy that the wipers are not on to her satisfaction. I put them on, but really low so I could still see. (It’s nice to see when you’re driving at night.) All this time, she’s been dropping not-so-subtle hints about the wipers. “I don’t know how you can see.” “I still think you should turn them on higher.” “I always have them on higher when I’m driving.” “Hmmf, I still don’t know how you can see.” AHHHHHH ENOUGH!!

The more you’re irritated and picked on, the more mistakes you make (I almost took out a mailbox) which makes her think her argument is proven. And of course there’s no notice of how I drive fine when I’m not being badgered. I still remember when I was 16 and I just pulled over out of aggravation when she just wouldn’t leave me alone.

Today, I drove home from Bradford through Haverhill again. She likes to freak out when people cross in front of me even though they may not be anywhere near me and my foot is on the brake. She did that yesterday at Demoulas when a woman was crossing in the lot and I was a good distance from her with my foot on the brake and creeping up slowly. She’s about all the way crossed and Mom’s like, “She’s trying to cross!!” Anyway, today she’s not helping me drive at all. Just talking. “People get in accidents over here. I don’t know why. Blah blah blah….. “

Today wasn’t nearly as bad as yesterday but just irritating ’cause I was still chafing from yesterday. I’ve been planning all night yesterday and today to bring up the whole wiper thing and ask her to please leave me alone and let me drive as long as I’m driving well. But this is a task because everything offends her. This is a woman who can’t take constructive criticism. When I finally get home tonight, I think I’m going to drop it, but being rather miffed, I slightly overshot the driveway. Didn’t do anything wrong, just by a couple feet and had to cut the wheel tighter. She responds, “You overshot the driveway.” AHHHHHHH!!! THANK YOU, QUEEN OF OBVIOUS!!!

Then I park and just explain to her to talk a little less because it’s irritating. Of course she’s all offended and starts this whole thing. So I bring up the wiper thing and ask what’s the deal with that. She responds, “I couldn’t see.” Hello? I say, “Yeah, but I could.”

“I know, but I couldn’t.”
“What is more important? The driver or the passenger seeing?” (Here’s another thing. You ask her logical black & white questions and she doesn’t get it.)

She keeps responding with, “I don’t know how you could see.”

I repeat, “Would you rather see and have me not see?” to which she never answered. I must’ve repeated that a good 4 times. She says to drop it, which is usually the reply when she knows she has no other reply.

This results in one pissed of me. I got home and vented on the phone and got of the phone and vented on here. Fortunately, I actually have money now so I have the option to just pay for driving lessons from somewhere and seriously I’d rather spend the 20-something dollars to drive with some schmoe for an hour than lose my sanity and waste half an evening writing a book-length entry on LJ.