Wednesday, November 27, 2013

OMG, Like, Really?

So, for once, I'm speechless. I cannot think of the last time I felt this way. Or, maybe that isn't the truth. Back in the mid 90's, this is when I began driving legally. At this time there was very little available in the way of technology, especially compared to right now. My first car was a 1992 red Honda Prelude Si. There I was, sixteen, filled with excitement. With money I earned from my weekend job, I could afford a full tank of gas, and then still have enough for a few slices of pizza with some friends. I remember heading over to my friend's house to pick him up so we could cruise around for the night. While I was sitting at a red light, although there was not another person in sight, I needed to show off, and so I decided put-up some nice sounding tunes on my radio. Before the light turned green, I quickly grab for the volume knob to crank it up. But music never came out of my speakers that day. No, instead I heard this weak thump sort of sound, followed by this loud elongated disturbing static noise. To this day I am still haunted by that sound. As I sat there bewildered about my forever muted stock radio, I quickly fell into a slight depression. I remember the opening of that factory installed tape deck glaring at me, as it was laughing because it knew all I owned at this time were CD's. That exact moment is when I realized I needed a better sound system in my car. During this time, it was just 1996. Sixteen year old's like me really didn't know about LCD screens yet. It is possible that some people were able to buy a head unit that had capabilities to broadcast TV. I definitely wanted one of those, but I certainly didn't have enough money for it. What I could afford, however, a CD player that had the ability to play mp3 CD's. Nonetheless, the technology then totally and entirely sucked. If it wasn't too expensive, then it was boring, complicated and just useless.

Now, back to why I am speechless. This evening, after stuffing my face with egg foo young, and reading quite the philosophical fortune cookie, which I will forever remember, I then logged onto yahoo. At this moment, thrown in my face is an article touting this amazing new advancement in technology from Audi. From first glance, all I could see was excitement. I then jumped on google, I typed in Audi technology in the news request only to find all of these publications, blogs, and whatevers, all filled with similar excitement that I saw attached to the first article. So, I thought, wow, there must be some awesome exciting news, evidently about some kind of awesome great technology that will be inside the dash of a semi-afforable car. Quickly I clicked into one of the articles. Hooray! A sight for sore eyes, they are integrating 4G LTE technology into their dashboard. Woohoo. Alright, wait... What? They're doing what? Well, that's stupid, who really cares? Am I the only one on this planet who doesn't think this is even almost a good idea? I mean, do we really need another monthly payment? Aren't our pockets already being wrung dry by other monthly fees: school loans, insurances costs, overpriced fuel, rent, car payments, child support, internet, smart phone data plans, etc.  Smart phone data plans, wait, did I just say smart phone data plan? Wait, so that means I already have a 4G LTE connection. Every month I pay about one-hundred dollars to my service provider for their alchemist stone, oops, I mean my data plan, so that I can keep connected to the world outside my head.

Alright, I am gonna stop beating around the bush, now. This celebrated advancement by Audi: Audi 4G LTE it makes very little sense to me. This supposed technology is why I am speechless. It depresses and perplexes me similarly to when my speakers blew up as I sat at a red light. With all of the latest technological advancements that exist today; with all the abilities that exist inside our smart phones, or any smart devices, that can communicate with LCD screens, I cannot understand why these car companies are thinking that this 4G LTE integration as a service is a good idea for the dashboards of our vehicles. To me, this all sounds like an advanced OnStar system. They are essentially allowing us to pay extra money per month for a service that we already have and are paying for: gees, thanks a lot, Audi, great idea. What's scary to me is that most likely the rest of the manufactures are going to follow suit with this stupid idea. I guess I just give these people who run these car manufactures a little bit too much credit. I mean, why would they actually give us something that makes sense and communicates through our smart devices that we already are paying a service fee for.

Monday, November 25, 2013

And The Odd Car Find of The Day Goes To:

This one on ebay. Seville or something?  With a current "Buy It Now" price of $13,000.00, what exactly are you waiting for? What is it? The guy selling it explains it to be a "1979 Cadillac Seville Opera Coupe." If you look at the one picture, yes, yes, those are real "bug eye headlamp covers." In addition, this supposed mid-engine 403 non-fuel injected thing(y) comes with a 1979 license plate. Unfortunately, however, the details do not say whether the Chicago Bulls front license plate will be included with the sale. Happy Bidding. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Just A Scenario

So, you pull into a dealership's spacious lot.

On your mind you are already, totally sold on, and incredibly excited about your decision to buy the car of your dreams: The Bla Bla Premium GT Supreme Limited Edition.

You've done all your homework. You are now ready to buy. Here you are, finding yourself walking around this enormous super car lot as you are on a mission to find a specific match to the Bla Bla Premium GT Supreme Limited Edition you've set out for. You know the exact one you are seeking. The one that has all its bells and whistles. Suddenly, you spot it. Only 100 feet from your face sits that dreamy hunk of metal gleaming from the sun its sexy skin color, with its curves so perfect. This exact moment is when all thought, all reason and rationality escapes out your mind now useless as it all drips down the side of your face. Emptied of all rational thoughts, your feet now magically lift off from the ground. You are whisked away, swept right into your dream Bla Bla Premium GT Supreme Limited Edition. You are now stuck to it, almost as though you are magnetized. In this moment, there you are as you find yourself stuck on the car, hugging it with your arms sprawled out, and your cheek pressed down suctioned against the hood.

Love at first sight! You've found it. That perfect Bla Bla Premium GT Supreme Limited Edition. No words are needed to be said. It is even obvious to the dealer's detailer what you are there for, this one and only reason. And that is for the car you are clinging to, wait, practically glued to.

Walking up from behind you appears a wonderfully enthusiastic salesperson, a new best friend. This salesperson says "come to my office, I can set you up for a test drive. All I need is your license, first born, blood and urine sample, and current vehicle registration."

Quickly you respond to the salesperson, "no, a test drive isn't necessary, I already know, I want this one."

A few moments later, you find yourself sitting in a simply constructed gray cubicle. It has a desk, three chairs, and a picture of your salesperson's supposed family from an Easter Sunday that might or might not have been staged.

After taking in the moment, as you are feeling this nervous energy since you are about to buy the car of your dreams. A car you've been thinking about, falling in-love with, for many months, that's when the salesperson says: "I will be right back, let me go speak to my manager for a second. I want to figure out the best deal for you, so that you can quickly get behind the wheel of that Bla Bla Premium GT Supreme Limited Edition." Upon her return, the salesperson says, "are you sure you want the Bla Bla Premium GT Supreme Limited Edition. I must tell you, we do have a great special on the Rah Rah Continental."

You give off a little chuckle, as you exclaim, "oh yes, I am sure about wanting the Bla Bla Premium GT Supreme Limited Edition. So, let's just go with that."

Suddenly the florescent lights in the dealership begin flickering. Your chair begins shaking. Followed by crashing sounds as surrounding cubicles fall down like dominos, landing on top of other customers all who are now screaming and shouting in fear of the deal they're about to sign. The air grows cold. The building becomes dark. Your salesperson now has steam shooting out from her ears as she screams: "what is wrong with the Rah Rah Continental? I myself have driven one for years, my family has wonderful memories from this car." Cautiously, you respond, "well, with all due respect to the Rah Rah Continental, and your family, I did come here specifically for the Bla Bla Premium GT Supreme Limited Edition." Feeling all confident for standing your ground and fighting for the car you came there to buy, that's when the manager suddenly appears. He says "so I hear you are interested in the Rah Rah Continental. That is a wonderful car. Great smart choice. We are running really great specials on it right now."

And, so now, after all is said and done. After miles and miles of different sheets of paper is printed and is now wet with your signature, the check drawn, this is when you find yourself driving off the car lot in a brand new Rah Rah Continental. And this is simply because the dealer stood to make a some sum of money if by the end of the month they sold a particular amount of Rah Rah's. And now you are stuck in an eighty-five year lease, driving away in your brand new Rah Rah; still dreaming about the Bla Bla Premium GT Supreme Limited Edition, the car you originally set out to buy.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

General Car Buying Discussion and Advice

Welcome, you are now ready to buy a new vehicle, for the purpose of adding this big hunk of metal, plastic, and/or whatever else it is made from, into your family parking lot.

What next?

What are the questions to ask when buying a vehicle?

In making the first step in deciding what to buy, it is helpful to take a look around at your current situation. Take notice to particular situations: i.e. work, travel, family, leisure, etc. Use these "situations" as considerations toward the vehicle that will be best in fitting to your needs.

I must say, for sure, one very important thing is: never walk on a dealership lot without actually knowing what you are there looking for.

Now, a "specific vehicle" might not define "knowing what you are looking for."

At the least, "knowing what you are looking for" requires you to know particularly how much you can afford. Vehicles can be bought outright; or they can be leased for a particular amount of time; or they can be financed throughout a particular amount of time. If you are leasing or financing a vehicle, then you must realize you are required during either term to have full insurance coverage which is another added expense on top of whatever the monthly car payment is. Once again, I repeat, even if you do not have a specific vehicle on your mind, the least you need to know is what you can spend, and you should have an idea of the type of vehicle you want or need. I am claiming this as important because it is very simple to walk into a car dealer and be met by a car salesperson who seems to have our best interests in mind. However, reality is, they do not have our best interests in mind. It is a salesperson's job to make as much money as possible for their dealership. This isn't something you need to hold against these people. However, it is something you must know because you should not allow them to put you into something that you cannot afford, nor something you do not even want.

Always keep in mind these salespeople are very persuasive, they're very convincing. This is their job, they meet someone new every day, and they are good at what they do. By knowing exactly what you want and need, you are limiting their persuasive misdirection that a salesperson will definitely drag you toward.

It is also helpful to keep the following in mind: You can always be agreeable, but no deals are done until contracts are signed and tags are transferred, money is paid, and then you are pulling off the lot in that vehicle. A car buying event usually has a lot of papers that needing to be signed. If you get to a particular moment where you feel that you have been persuaded in a way that you are not comfortable with, simply excuse yourself from the situation. Tell the salesperson that you need sometime to think over everything. It is that simple! And it is something you might have to do because car salespeople are that good. This salesperson might be annoyed, or they might try to tell you that the deal can only be done today. Do not fall for that. First of all, by walking away it might even get you a better deal. Secondly, it is really important you not be tricked and sold into something you are not comfortable with. Think about it before you sign for it!

Finally, before ending today's tip of the day, always remember: keep your numbers to yourself. The salesperson will immediately ask you how much you are looking to spend. They might  also ask what you are currently paying on a  current lease or finance. They are only asking you these because they want to calculate in their minds how much they can get away with charging you for a this new purchase. There is no reason for these salespeople to know how much you currently spend on your current vehicle. Let me repeat that: there is no reason for a salespeople to know how much you are currently spending on your vehicles.

For me personally, a greatly helpful site I've referred to for years is: This website offers a great amount of information about all new and used vehicles. On this site you will find pros, and cons, as well as detailed explanations about any vehicle you are interested in. You can also see what people are paying for the vehicles you are interested in, and you can get a rough estimate of a cars worth through this site. In addition there is a finance calculator that you can use to help you do all your important homework to know exactly what you can and cannot do with reference to your new purchase.

Now, the only problem is, this site has become a little confusing, at least compared to what it had been in the past.  Please refer the following images to see how to use for it to be most helpful so you can complete your important homework assignments. And I explain these images: the first image you will see it has a big red "no" symbol. I am pointing this out because once you log onto, this is what you are presented with first. Unfortunately if you get caught up in that world, then you might get lost as you become distracted from your main mission, and then it is possible you will hate me and Please note, I am not implying to never use this part of their site. It seems as though Edmunds has an agreement with dealerships for them to make money from leads they point toward dealerships. However, for what I've been explaining throughout this blog post, this particular section is not helpful for our homework assignment. Once on the homepage, you need to scroll down toward the bottom of the homepage and find the words "New Cars" and underneath that it says "Calculators." That is where the golden wealth of information resides at the time I wrote this blog and posted the screen shots. On my second screenshot which refers to this section of, please realize that the big red arrows are arrows that I have added, they do not exist on These arrows are just pointing at the places you should refer to so that you can do the important homework so you are not taken advantage of when you walk onto a dealership lot. Good luck!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sundays in Amerca

Okay, well, I guess this applies more specifically to the two states in which I have spent most of my life in. That is in Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. The former longer than the latter. Nonetheless, in these two states, this is when those of us weirdo car lovers can venture to our grown up version of a toy store: The New Car lot. There are a couple of reasons that this trip becomes an adventure. First of all, it is almost like trespassing. The dealership is closed. Most of the car lots have some type of barrier to protect themselves from some sort of car thief serial theft party, kinda thing. However, for those of us who are legitimately just weirdos wanting to step around and through a new car lot to dream as we peak into the windows looking at whatever it is that turns us on about these silly machines, those barriers actually work in our favor. These barriers keep the police from coming up to us with suspicion that we are going to steal a vehicle off from the lot. Okay, you know what, scratch all of that which I just said. I guess I am really just escaping off into some kind of land of assumptions because as I am explaining what I've just explained I realize that even though there are barriers keeping people from stealing vehicles from the lot, those of us who are there (just dreaming, looking, and peaking) could actually be mistaken as criminals. Possibly even being shot to death by a trigger happy anyone while simply just looking at window stickers. I realize now that up to this point, for all the years I take my Sunday walk through random dealer lots, I guess I have been lucky not to be harassed by the law. Let's be real, it is actually totally possible to steal things without actually removing the vehicle in its entirety from the lot. If you are creative enough you can run a chop shop by just stripping entire lots filled with vehicles on Sunday's when dealerships are closed. Hmm... Okay, but what is my point with all of this palaver? I really don't know actually. But I do know that Sunday is my favorite time to go through a car lot because I am not attacked by a relentless car salesperson that is trying to make a particular monthly whatever it is this person is trying for. And then an added bonus for Sunday car browsing is that it keeps one's phone safe from that weird car salesperson after convincing you it is a good idea to give out your phone number for that person to just stalk you every couple of months, "hey, just calling to let you know we just got a shipment of over priced gas guzzling, almost already to be outdated electronic option filled whatevers," while in the same breath stating that I should come in for a test drive so that I can be convinced that I should spend my life savings on a totally absurd combination of plastic and cheapest made parts placed into a overly marketed piece of shit. Oh, yeah, I would love to pay 2300 on an integrated navigation system because my smartphone does not do that for me at no extra cost. Oh, and, yes, please, I would love to have the option to listen to XM or Sirius to waste my money when I can listen to the radio for free, or even better simply plug in my smartphone and hear exactly everything I prefer to listen to. Great ideas out there car manufactures. Yeah, your vehicle current miles per gallon stats really make all the sense in the world at this point in time. Glad to see such proactive solutions to true economic and ecologic worries. So, yeah, Sunday car shopping, a time that permits me to just keep my dreaming and car browsing experience to my own eclectic imagination as I visit these car dealerships on that seventh day. A day that God decided to rest. A day that the mosquitos who work at many of these dealerships are at home, all coming off of a night of snorting lines, and well, whatever it is that they do on a Saturday night.

Tip of the day. When buying a car, give out no numbers.

Dealer "What is your current car payment?"
You "I would rather not divulge that right now."


Dealer "What is your telephone number?"
You "I would rather not divulge that right now."