I did something incredible yesterday. I bought a new (used) car, (!) (wait, that's not the incredible part) and I'm pretty sure I traveled through time to do it. (!!)
On Wednesday morning Kira and I were driving to school in my front wheel drive, compact car and for seemingly no reason at all, while I was going about forty miles an hour, the car just started going sideways. No warning, I wasn't cranking on the wheel or slamming on the brakes. It just slid and there was nothing we could do about it. Thankfully I got it back under control, but I was seriously freaked out and had visions in my head for the entire day of being broadsided by a dump truck and having my daughter killed and getting paralyzed myself. (Btw, if that ever really does happen, someone push my wheel chair/hospital bed into a deep pool.) At school I looked online at used cars here in Duluth. I found one that looked to be in good shape, AWD, not a compact, so Sam and I went to the dealership after school for a test drive. We liked it. I drove it like an idiot to see if it was going to sail off like my compact car did, and it was under control even on icy roads. Relief! I talked money with the salesman, thought I got a good deal for my trade-in, got a pretty good price on the car and I was set. I told him I'd come back the next day with my paperwork and we'd make the deal.
This isn't the first car I've ever bought. I've done this before. I'm not saying I'm any good at it, but I'm as good as the next guy. Sure the dealer probably took advantage of my naiveté, such that it is, but like Mitch says, "They do this for a living; you buy a car 7 or 8 times in your life. You don't have a chance to beat them." I still thought I was making a pretty good deal. I went home and filled in the online credit application and sent it in.
On Thursday morning is when I think I went into the time warp. I'm not sure if it happened at night when I was sleeping, or after I got up and I just didn't notice, but I definitely travelled back about 50 or 60 years in time. The first hint I had that it had happened was when one of the idiot financial guys at the dealership called me AT SCHOOL, WHILE I WAS TEACHING to tell me that I don't qualify for a loan and I need a co-signer. The school secretary patched the call in to me and I took it thinking it was something from the teacher or from a parent and it was this idiot! I had a line of 5th graders standing next to me waiting for help with their math and this guy just calls in the middle of the day. What did he think I was doing?
Oh, and ...WHAT!!!??? A co-signer? What am I, sixteen? My credit score is excellent, and like I said, I've gotten car loans before, all by my little old self, but now apparently I don't qualify. So I called Mitch and asked him to meet me at the dealership to co-sign. He didn't want to do it because he doesn't want to be involved with my cars because they are MY CARS. I didn't want him involved either. I don't need a hubby-daddy.
We met at the dealership after school. Me, our kids and a reluctant hubby-daddy. SO fun. I thought since I had been in the night before that things would be expedited and we could sign some quick papers and get out of there. They made us sit there for two and a half hours! (but now that I think about it, that might have been some illusion of the time warp. It might have actually been six minutes or it could have been thirteen days. Who knows. All I know is that it was daytime when I got there, and nighttime when I left.) Finally, a financial douche came out to get us so we could go in to his office and sign the papers. Here's how that meeting went:
Financial Douche (FD) - (walking up to Mitch and sticking out his hand for a hearty, manly handshake) Hey there, Mitch is it? Nice to meet you, my name is Douchy McDoucherson. (giving me NOT a hearty handshake, but a slight-to-no acknowledging glance, and a head nod)
Mitch - hi. uh..yes, it's mitch. (lack of capitals indicates lack of enthusiasm, and embarrassment at the blatant chauvenism displayed to his wife)
FD - Oh! I see by your jacket that you're a hockey coach! Wow! I also am involved in sports! We have so much in common! Let's walk together! Your concubine can follow! Or not! Who cares! I understand you have a penis! I also have a penis! How do you like your balls? I really like mine a LOT! I feel so special having testosterone coursing through my veins, don't you?
Mitch - .....uh...
At this point we had reached the office. We sat down and FD continued to talk to Mitch about the wonders of being a man, ("Isn't it great to be able to lift heavy things and open jars?") and eventually about the car. I was seething even more than I was seething when I was kept waiting for two hours. I had already figured out what I was going to pay for a downpayment, already settled what I was going to get for my trade-in but FD didn't have the correct information. He said that I had agreed to a thousand dollars less for my trade in than I had actually agreed to, and I had it IN WRITING! When I showed him he said, "Yes, but there are fees we charge like this (pointing to a $650 itemized something in the plus column, and a $300 itemized something in the minus column.) and he looked at me like I was a stupid child. Mitch said, "That doesn't make any sense. How can a plus $650 and a negative $300 add up to losing a thousand dollars on a quoted trade-in price? Even if they were both in the negative column they would still only add up to $950." FD said something about having to clean the car and get it ready for sale blah blah blah, balls, penis, balls. (I want a job working as a car cleaner for a dealership because apparently they pay $1000 per car.)
We got the papers all signed, I got the payments that I wanted, and the car was mine. Finally. So FD walked us out:
FD - Say Mitch, do you have any hair on your chest? I have a few on my chest and it makes me feel soooooooo superior to anyone who can grow a baby in their body! Here, look! It's in a patch and it goes all the way down to my nethers!
Mitch - .......
So anyway, the bottom line is that we went through an extremely painful experience with a chauvenistic bastard so I could drive off in a BRAND NEW! eight year old car with all wheel drive so I don't get killed when I try to go anywhere, and I learned time travel is possible, although I don't really know how it happened, and I spent the better part of the day yesterday in Duluth somewhere between 1950 and 1960. The fifties, what a magical time for women! And blacks. And anyone else who didn't have a set of white balls.