Last Sunday morning a joke bubbled up from my personal internal hard drive memory:
This is about the husband who was in real trouble. He had forgotten his anniversary, and his wife was furious. “Tomorrow morning,” she yelled at him, “there had better be something in the driveway that goes from zero to 60 in less than ten seconds!”
The following morning she gets up and looks out the window. There in the driveway is a small package. Curious, she goes down to get it and bring it in the house. She opens the package and discovers -- a bathroom scale.
So at breakfast I told the joke to Cliff, and then I asked him what kind of car he would want if money were no object. Rather quickly, he responded, saying he would choose a Toyota Camry. “Not something like a Masserati?” I asked. No that sort of thing didn’t interest him. He is too practical , he said.
Then I started to read the paper, and the following is an excerpt from Click and Clack, aka Tom and Ray, which appeared to round out the whole discussion:
Click and Clack
Dear Tom and Ray:
My lovely wife has always said that I could have any car I want to satisfy my midlife crisis. I am turning 50 this year and had thought of getting a roadster/sports car. I have dreams of driving down the road with the top down and my beautiful wife beside me. Unfortunately, I am somewhat practical and don’t want to spend a great deal of money. I have looked at some classic sports cars, such as an MG Midget and Austin-Healey Sprite. However I am afraid of getting a garage car (a car that never leaves the garage), and wonder whether there is a more reliable alternative. Please advise. Thank you. George.
A Ray: From your choice of cars, I can see you are seeking out a midlife crisis with the emphasis on ‘crisis’.
Tom: Oh, au contraire, Piston Puss! Those are great cars! You get the wind blowing through your hair ...
Ray: As you get pulled along by the tow truck.
Tom: You get the feel of the road ...
Ray: Every single pebble.
Tom: You get the smell of the gasoline ...
Ray: And the burning oil -- and the impending electrical fires. These cars are the very definition of “garage cars”, Tom. And they SHOULD stay in the garage, because not only are they unreliable, they’re unsafe, too.
Tom: So you wear a football helmet.
Ray: George, choose carefully here. If you screw up your mid-life crisis the first time, you’re just going to have to do it all over again.
Tom: Which is what I’ve been doing for the past 30 years!
Ray: What you need, George, is a Mazda Miata. Back in the 1980’s, the engineers at Mazda said, “What if we built one of those great British style sports cars -- a two seater, convertible, low to the ground with just enough power and superb handling -- but unlike the MG’s and Triumphs, we made one that STARTS every day?”
Tom: That idea became the Miata. And since Mazda’s been making them for 20 years now, you can find one in almost any condition , and at almost any price you want.
Ray: Right. So if you want to simulate an old MG Midget, get a Miata that’s been stored under an old pile of leaves for the past 10 years. Or, if you want one you can actually enjoy find a more recent one in decent condition.
Tom: I can endorse the Miata, George, even though it doesn’t leak enough oil for my taste. Happy Crisis!