It was, by all accounts, a meteorologically dreary weekend, with rain that started sometime Friday and lasting through the duration, but it was nevertheless enjoyable. I took in my first movie in the theaters in months, and managed to get a number of miscellaneous items completed (as I’ve always got some side hustles going, I was able to dedicate some time to them, though I still need to work on editing my collection of Inspector Gerard stories).
Besides seeing friends and loved ones, though, I try to use these days to take care of routine maintenance—on the house, on my cars, whatever the case might be. Lately I’ve been borderline fanatical about organization, particularly keeping my desk at home tidy, various writing utensils and calendars at the ready when needed.
This weekend, though, I dedicated several hours to reviving my long lost love: my busted up 2006 Dodge Caravan.
It’s a life-changing act of generosity, and the kind of thing that always seems to be attached to Chick-fil-A. It’s amazing how an overtly Christian establishment with a strong commitment to quality and good treatment breeds more of the same. I needn’t list the many examples of Chick-fil-A employees doing good things—we’ve all heard dozens of such stories already.
“Nothing in life is certain except death and taxes,” the old saying goes. But we are also born, those of us fortunate enough not to fall prey to the abortion industry. Today marks my thirty-fifth birthday. I celebrated by paying $162.57 in vehicle property taxes to Darlington County, South Carolina.
Yesterday, I purchased a new vehicle, my first new car in thirteen-and-a-half years, and only the third I’ve ever owned. It’s a 2017 Nissan Versa Note SV. The other two were a 1988 Buick Park Avenue Electra, which I bought from my older brother for $800, after my grandparents gave it to him one year, and a 2006 Dodge Caravan, which those same grandparents gave to me as a college graduation gift (after the Buick was totaled when a lady ran a yield sign and smashed into me).
The Buick is long gone, but I kept the Dodge. I figure it’s worth more to me as stuff-hauler than I would have gotten in trade-in value. Of course, that means maintaining insurance on both vehicles, and paying taxes on each.
Last week, troubled electric automaker Tesla announced Elon Musk’s latest brainchild, the Cybertruck. The Cybertruck—the name of which I am sure is meant to evoke the dystopian sci-fi genre cyperpunk—features a rolled steel and titanium exoskeleton that looks like a Nintendo 64 polygonal rendering of an automobile.
It’s unorthodox design aside, I honestly can’t make up my mind on whether or not I like this vehicle. Last week I lamented the new electric Mustang, not because it is electric, but because it’s a hatchback. The title of that piece was “New Mustang is a Sign of the Times,” and my point was that everything awesome seems to be deteriorating.
Does the Tesla Cybertruck fit that trend? Is it a horrible monstrosity? Or is it a daringly original vehicle?
Electric cars are fine, although environuts shouldn’t delude themselves that driving these battery-powered vehicles are saving the environment (it’s pedantic to point out, but batteries require a great deal of mining to get the metals necessary to build them, and the electricity to charge them comes from coal-, oil-, and nuclear-power, so it’s not like you’re truly making an end-run around fossil fuels). But a Ford Mustang shouldn’t be an electric car; at least, it shouldn’t be one that looks like this iteration.