The Long Run

Automotive warranties are typically a joy when you’re protected.  Of course, we all have had our head scratchers.  “You only change the oil once per year?”  “Did this free car wash come with a free thin layer of dirt?”  “Seriously, this aftermarket intake cannot void my suspension warranty.”  Rough patches aside, its about the peace of mind while consuming less of your fiscal piece of the pie.

Sunday marks T-1 month…and then my car rolls down Unprotected Lane.  Wipers, oil filters, brake system flushes, tire rotations?  Cha-ching.  They’re now on my tab.  There’s also the stretch of 12 months with no warranty that overlaps with the final 12 months of car payments.  Evil timing.  For many, especially for those with occasionally-fickle performance technologies tucked under the hood, it’s the time to seriously consider the respite of the trade-in market. 

The battle of love versus money causes wars on Wall Street, becomes the prevailing theme in tumultuous family relationships and breaks up relationships with our beloved automobiles.  Do I walk across the twin-turbo minefield or do I cave to the new car smell on dealership row? 

Its one month of ‘make it or break it’.  When the chips are at risk, one always seeks the advice of the venerable Kenny Rogers.  “You got to know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em - Know when to walk away and know when to run.”  Is this a moment for The Romantics?  “Keep on whispering in my ear - Tell me all the things that I wanna hear - 'Cause it's true - That's what I like about you.”  Gambling and romance are known to get mankind into deep trouble.  Our cars are extensions of our hearts and the risk centers of our minds.  Roll the dice?  Embrace the risk?

I believe that we have enough grip for this turn.  It says ‘E’ but we’ll make it.  The temp needle will hold.  It’s a yearlong leap of faith.   We’ve been down this road.  Is it hardened experience or blind faith?  There was a time when I thought that this drama’s soundtrack would feature ‘For the Love Of Money’ from the O’Jays.  More appropriately, I’ll go with the ‘The Long Run’ by the Eagles.  “You can go the distance - We'll find out in the long run - We can handle some resistance - If our love is a strong one.”  Right now, I’m sticking to my guns…for the love of that darned lovely car.  I wouldn't have it any other way.

Richard Williams