My experiences with the DMV aka double jeopardy tax collection agency, the greatest racket in the history of mankind auto mechanic, and owning a car in a city where your length of residence can be read, like tree rings, by the number of dents and broken sideview mirrors it has, leads me to seriously contemplate selling my car.
It’s no surprise to anyone that cars are money pits. Even late model cars like mine chew up dollars in gas, maintenance and fees. On a recent Bataan death march to my mechanic I was given an estimate for $3,000 in general upkeep repairs, including $500 (!) for a replacement passenger side rearview mirror that was damaged from a hit and run collision on one lane wide two lane streets. I asked him to do the bare minimum that would get me through the state inspection. We haggled to $350. I passed inspection after complimenting a female DMV station employee on her sense of shoe style so that she overlooked the mirror violation.
Besides the money, there is the inconvenience. This is one of those transportation purgatory cities where the public transit options (taxi zone system ripoff) and distance between the neighborhoods are not quite conducive enough to be without a car all the time, yet the limited parking, traffic, road disrepair, and horrid driving skills of the locals make owning a car a perpetual headache. Halfway between New York and LA is no place to be.
I’m not worried about what not having a car will do to my game. There are many ways around this. Since most young single girls are bleeding heart liberals, a simple appeal to fighting global warming should suffice.
Her: So what time will you pick me up?
Me: I’m not. We’ll take a cab to the E Street cinema 7:45 showing of “The not-so-secret lives of gays, gays, gays, and more gays”.
Her: You don’t have a car?
Me: No, I sold it to reduce my carbon footprint. Global warming is the greatest evil in the world, right up there with the 2nd amendment. I don’t want to contribute to the melting of the glaciers with a selfish, overfed, American lifestyle. Without the ice, where will the polar bears fornicate? You’re not an anti-fornicator, are you?
Thank you, Al Gore, for helping my game.
If the environment doesn’t move her, I can always pre-emptively head off her objection.
Me: I only date enlightened 21st century women who understand the value of low-impact living and embrace a post-automobile reality. My last girlfriend, even though she was only 19 and so pretty that people thought she must not be smart, understood why I sold my car.
Her: Oh, I walk around the city a lot!
Me: Great. I’ll pick you up on my skateboard. It’s a one-seater, so you’ll have to sit on my shoulders.
It’s ironic that getting rid of my car, long an American symbol of freedom, now strikes me as a very liberating choice. Perhaps one trip on the bus, where an acquaintance once witnessed a shooting that injured the bus driver, will change my mind.