#219 Car shopping.

Every 4 or 5 years, my mama gets the itch for a new car. She bought her 4Runner in 2006 so lately she’s been eyeing new cars as she passes the dealerships. We set out at 10 this morning with her mind set on a Lexus SUV:

She’s reaching retirement age and says she’d like to finally drive a luxury car (because the Mercedes she drove when I was in kindergarten wasn’t very “luxurious” — it was constantly messing up). She test drove it twice, and felt sure she couldn’t live without it. She wanted me to ride in it with her to affirm that it was, in fact, the nicest car on earth. I did, and it was nice. Too small for Big Ben to ride comfortably, but very nice regardless. It smelled… Well, elite, you know?

When we left, I asked her to just drive past the Jeep dealership to take a look at that cool looking new Grand Cherokee. Reluctantly, she gave in to my wish and we took it for a spin. Right away, she remembered that soft spot we all keep for the olive green 1997 Jeep Cherokee Country we drove until it was totaled in 2004. It was the best car our family ever owned and I would still be driving it today if it were around. And then she began to think about the 1995 Jeep Wrangler my daddy muddies up on the weekends, that she secretly loves to drive whenever he lets her. “It would be perfect for trips to Oxford. So comfortable. And it has satellite radio. And Ben could ride in it,” she tells me. The nice salesman told us to take it home for the weekend so daddy could see it, and the more we rode in it, the more that pretty little fancy pants Lexus paled in comparison. For all it had in prestige and technology, it would be worthless in terms of sentimental value. When we got home, I showed them this piece of marketing genius:
A manifesto about the craftsmanship of American ingenuity set to Johnny Cash, and she and daddy were sold. I even got a little shiver watching it. What is it with our family and Jeeps and Bugs?

Now we just need to take it on a trip somewhere. Can’t. Wait.