What in purple hells is an “original mile?” As in “this clunker has 999,999×1099999k original miles,” a frequently seen phrase for various values of 999,999×1099999 in craigslist ads tho’ minus, alas, the “clunker” revelation, which comes only when you love it, e-mail about it, see it, drive it, and cry, cry, cry. Are there non-original miles? Perhaps there are replica miles, facsimile miles, knock-off miles produced without the authorization of the mile trademark holder? Miles that are really kilometers with bad stitching? Canadian miles? Limited edition numbered reprint miles? Inferior miles produced by Johnny-come-lately competitors? Is an original mile like original sin — does it pass to the descendants of the person who drove it? (And does a non-original mile then evaporate on sale, as I hope will the scorned, reviled, and long-overdue parking tickets attached to my last car?) Non-original miles would like to be original Miles but don’t have the chops? Original miles are first quintet Miles??
I finally got rid of my old car (the one that would have cost more to repair than it was worth), and am now in the market for a new one. And it’s driving me (as it were) round the bend. Some observations:
1. A deal that sounds too good from a dealer definitely is; you’ll find this out on the test drive. (Poor beautiful old convertible Mustang — how I wanted you until I found out how you run, how at any speed below 50 you vibrate like a sex toy for the nerve-damaged.)
2. Banks have totally unreasonable reserves for the really cool cars at the repo auction.
3. There are WAY THE FUCK TOO MANY transaction costs in the private party used car market — it’s just so hard to find cars and buyers that match on things like craigslist — surely this is an opportunity for some intermediary to make some money by introducing efficiencies of scale? (I actually have some ideas here: anyone rich reading wanna fund me to start a .com doing this, or anyone starting a .com wanna pay me for said brilliant ideas?)
4. Looking for a used car is a lot like looking for a mate. You can’t get the best ones, and the ones you can get have all kind of hidden flaws. If only there were a zipcar equivalent.
In other news, if anyone knows anyone who is selling a car in the SF bay area (or LA, what the hell), either reliable and cheap or flashy and cheap and will not fall apart until mid 2011, do talk to me. I want a set-up, that is.