Sunday, April 27, 2014

Driving Is The Only Way To Fly

"Most books on witchcraft will tell you that witches work naked. This is because most books on witchcraft are written by men."

~Terry Pratchett, Good Omens: The Nice And Accurate Prophecies Of Agnes Nutter, Witch

There are times when I dearly wish I was a witch! Not a mean, green witch with a wort on my nose, who dines on children, but a witch in the tradition of Samantha Stephens. A good witch! A witch who used her powers for the good of humanity, but who also wasn't above showing a man or two a few things about how a woman should be respected! She knew the perfect balance of things, Samantha understood that human's weren't a lower life form, merely a different life form than she was, funny how some "human" men, even in 2014, can't wrap their consciousness around that concept!

You see...

A couple weeks ago, after years of staunch debate in our house, Alan and I finally came to an understanding that we needed to unload the 2007 Saturn ION Deathtrap that we owned. We had sold our other one a 1 1/2 ago after that car came to a sudden and devastating vehicle death by stroke... or maybe it was automotive Alzheimer's... I am not quite sure what to say, but I am pretty sure it was all due to the fact that it pretty much stopped working properly 3 days after the warranty ended! Hand to God... no joke! 3 days after the warranty expired, the car stopped working and it was repair bill, after repair bill after that!

Anyway, because Alan thought it would be nice to not have 2 car payments to make for a while, he decided he didn't want to replace both cars at the same time. A decision I have been vehemently against, because of all the reading I had done about problems with the 2007 Saturn ION's. But it was his decision to make. We traded the one car in, and he gave me the new car to drive. He continued to drive his car, which made me completely insane with worry, but we don't railroad each other. I learned to live with his decision.

Fast Forward to... ahem... April's Fool's Day of this year, and the quick decision was made to get rid of the Saturn, pretty much with the third or fourth word out of the mouth of the new C.E.O. of General Motors, Mary Berra. Finally, Alan got it... the cars are dangerous! They had been lemons since we bought them. So, with the new enlightenment, came the decision to purchase another Chevrolet Spark. We have been quite happy... so far... with our Spark, it's in our price range, it gets great gas mileage, and has plenty of room for us and our daily needs. So, it was off to the dealership.


When we walked onto the dealership lot, and were greeted by a car salesman named "Karl." Not his real name. We conveyed our needs in a new car and asked to see a 2013 model. They had one. It had what I wanted, and it was a 2LT. Check. It was "Priced to move" because it was a 2013 model. Tip: You get a good price for buying a model from the previous year. Yes, it's last year's model, but it is still a new car, plus you have a whole year to see what the car is like once it has been broken in! Always check cars out through Edmond's, or Car and Driver... HELL any car rating site, but don't stop there, read the forums and see what problems are being reported by current drivers of the model you want! Another plus... when you go to sell it, it will have a year less in mileage than might be expected!

Anyway, I did the deal, and got what I wanted. I was offered $3,000.00 I said NO! I wanted $3,700.00 or $3,500 at the very least. DEAL. The dealership said I could only count on a $500.00 Chevy incentive, I said, "Oh really?" One hour later, it was a $1,000 incentive! The Saturn ION was listed in Kelly Blue Book with a value of $4,000 top value... the car was not in top value... so I was expecting $1,500.00 especially given the fact that the congressional hearings were airing, which pretty much told the world the cars were a dangerous pain in the ass, if driven with the key on a FOB.


Anyway, I did the deal. Alan and I were happy with how things went. I looked the dealer in the eye and told him I was going to be the driver. I am the one the car's name is in as the primary driver and it is registered as such. I am the one who found the scratch on the dashboard, and endured the skeezy salesman asking me if ..."a free tank of gas would make things right?" A free tank of GAS? "How fucking much do you charge for gas?" I asked the skeezy salesman! I was then offered free "Butler Service" for one year? Or maybe I would like some nice, clean oil changes? NO... skeezy salesman... "you are going to replace the dashboard. It's a brand new car. I deserve to have a brand new car without a scratch on the dashboard... make it right."

And they did... eventually. It took 10 days for the new dashboard to come in. And come in it did... with 4 scratches on it, deeper and longer than the scratch that was on mine! I was told it would be another 3-5 days, and that they would request the order be expedited. 5 days turned into 9 days... and finally my car was finished, and ready for pick-up. It looked great. Good! Now I never had to see that dealership again. Fine. Good. Whatever. But yesterday, I got, or rather Alan got, a card in the mail, addressed to him, THANKING HIM FOR DOING BUSINESS WITH THE GOOD FOLKS AT CHEVY!

It was like I was never there.

I didn't do the deal.

I didn't demand that the dashboard be made right.

I didn't sign the loan or registration papers.

I guess I shouldn't have been surprised. The salesman did, after all, make his very first question to me "Which color are you interested in?"

I had to nearly bite my lip in two not to respond... the red... I hear they get better gas mileage! Or maybe the blue... I hear they are especially chill!

Sexism is a theme at that particular dealership, if you read YELP you will see it's true. What a shame in 2014 some men still woefully underestimate women on a daily basis, and how embarrassing for the male sex as a whole! The whole sexist attitude is just embarrassing and sad. Yes, that's it. I wasn't sad for me yesterday, I was sad for the salesman who sent the Thank You card, because clearly he is lacking in SELF RESPECT.

The Mad Men Effect: What's The Deal With Other-Era Sexism?
 (Forbes) 3/24/2012

Mood: Disappointed

~Me :(

Samantha's Driving Lesson 
Season 1. Episode 26.

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