Day 734 Thursday January 10, 2019 857 Days to Go
How Donald Trump is like a car dealership.
The other day a friend of mine asked me what she should do. She had taken her car to the dealer and they told her it needed seven thousand dollars worth of repairs. This included $4,500 for a new oxygen something or other on the exhaust system. I asked her the make, year, and number of miles.
I sent that information and the cost of the repairs along to my brother, who lives and breathes cars. (I mean how many people do you know that knew the reason that what’s his name in “My Cousin Vinnie” was innocent before Joe Pesci revealed it? Hint: The car Ralph Macchio was driving didn’t have posi-traction and the car that committed the crime did, so obviously it wasn’t Ralph’s car that was the getaway vehicle. My brother knew that by the model of the car!)
What did my brother say about the repair?
“Dealer quote? That’s bullshit.”
The car in question was a Honda Civic with 163,000 miles. When I tell people that the immediate response is “That car isn’t worth $7000.00.” To which I say, “Duh, I know. Right?”
My brother went on to say that car dealerships do this all the time. What you need to do is to take it to a small shop. Hopefully one that specializes in that type of car. In one case my brother said a friend of his did this and the guy in the shop said, “Listen, this is a car you park at the train station while you commute, right? If you were driving it across country or wanted it to act like when it was new, make those repairs, but otherwise see me in the spring and I’ll put on new brake pads.”
There’s another problem my friend faces in the car repair department. She’s a woman. Many car repair and tire shops are sexist. They see a woman and they think they can snow her. How many of us have stories about some car repair shop telling you a bunch of bunk? Everyone? Okay, you know what I’m talking about. There are several ways to handle this situation. One) prove to them you know your stuff and you aren’t to be messed with. Two) Bring someone along who will strongly suggest by their presence that this person is not to be messed with.
My dad once had a problem when he was in college with a clothing repair and laundry service. His friend said, “Let me go with you.” Dad asked, “What good will that do?” His friend said, “I’ll come into the shop with you. I’ll wear my trench coat and slouch hat. I’ll stand by the door with my hands in the pockets of the trench coat and every once in awhile I’ll adjust the brim of my hat.”
Dad knew it would do no good, but his friend insisted so they went back. Dad went to the counter. The guy looked at Dad’s friend and got real nervous. The clerk couldn’t find Dad’s stuff fast enough. No problem. See ya later.
My brother worked in a truck repair place in high school. One day a woman pulled up in a white Cadillac convertible with red interior. She had a little white dog and was dressed all in white. She asked if they had any old gears from the rear differentials of trucks that they were willing to part with? (This is not a typical situation in a place that repairs garbage trucks and town snow plow trucks for a living.)
The answer was a halting, “Yeah.” She was led out back to where the old rear axles were piled up. The whole shop emptied out to watch. The guy leading her out picked up a gear and explained to her what it was. She immediately said, “No, it’s not,” and proceeded to tell him the exact kind of gear and ratio that it was. It turned out she knew every gear in the place on first sight. She was a sculptress and used the gears, which she welded together to form the bases for her sculptures.
Okay, so my point is that you either got to prove you know what you are doing/talking about, or you got to bring along someone who does or who will scare the bejesus out of them, or you got to use logic and reason. The later case I have not explained yet.
Before I explain the logic and reason method let me repeat that car places can be very sexist. This is because guys are stupid when it comes to women. Guys will “man ‘splain” to a woman. This is when they describe what is obvious or when they talk out of their rear end (ie they know nothing about the subject but act like they do. Women are used to this and either smile benignly and act like they are around a dog that needs his head patted, or they get worked up and either lash out (if they know the guy is being an idiot) or they get scared because they don’t know what he is talking about and they think they should, and besides they really don’t want to deal with this and can’t daddy come and fix it? To which my wife would probably say, “Shoot her and put her out of her misery.” But she would only do that after removing the man’s gonads.)
Okay, listen up. This is what everyone needs to know about cars in ‘Merica. Are you listening? Most cars have pistons in their engines. These cars’ engines are called “internal combustion engines.” Those engines require three things to run: air, fuel, and spark (thank-you Dad for teaching me this.) How those three things get to the engine to explode in the cylinder where the piston is differ, but that’s what they need. btw a gasoline powered lawn mower requires the same three things. There is another type of internal combustion engine and it is called a rotary engine. They need the same three things too. So does a diesel but someone will say it doesn’t need a spark it need a glow to which I say, “F you.” (You need to learn to stand your ground. This is one place where that phrase makes sense.)
The difference between a car dealership and a smaller repair shop is the car dealership will tell everyone they need the $7000 repair. It is up to you the customer to know when that is BS. Not that the car couldn’t probably use those things but is it worth it? And, do you care? By that I mean if the car’s value is two grand, you have to realize based on the year, condition, and number of miles it will still be considered to be worth two grand, even if you put seven into it. Secondly, by do you care, I mean, do you care if your car’s whozemawhatit is up to snuff or not? Will it kill you? (No.) Is it legal if it’s not? (Yes.) Then fugetaboutit.
Okay, here is the determining factor in getting rid of a car. Will it no longer get you from point A to point B? In your heart of hearts have you lost faith? I got rid of a Volkswagen when I could no longer trust that it could make it up hills because the oil was leaking onto the clutch plate so badly that it slipped so much that it had a hard time on the NJ Turnpike. I’ve had other cars when it was just time. You can usually check around and find out what the life expectancy of your car is. Back in the 50s it was 50,000 miles. Then it moved up to 100K. Now some cars are good to 175 or even 250,000 miles. Learn the signs for your car. Volvos need a new water pump and timing belt at 80K, then they should be good, (Emphasis on “should.”)
We’ve got a Toyota Highlander that’s got 180,000 on it. We don’t drive it often and the battery goes dead. It’s a new battery so I trickle charge it over night and it’s fine. I have told Shelby that if it ever doesn’t get her from point A to point B, or she doesn’t feel it will, we’ll get rid of it. Last year we drove it 2,700 miles. Is it worth getting a new car to drive 2,700 miles?
Okay, so there you have it. What you need to know about cars in America. You can learn more, but that’s the minimum. The question is, “How is Donald Trump like a car dealership?”
At a car dealership you have service consultants. They are the red team, the green team and the gold team. You got the techs who work on your car. The techs tell the service consultants what they see that could be replaced or fixed. They probably don’t know if the car is owned by a man, woman, or gorilla; and they probably don’t care. The service consultant looks up the cost of the repairs out of their rate book and add in the parts and tells the customer. It might not enter either the tech or the consultant’s mind that this is cray-cray. I mean, who is crazy enough to spend seven grand on a two grand car? It’s alway fun to ask the service consultant how much your car is worth; have them give you a price, and then ask them with a straight face why they would suggest spending more money on the car then it is worth. They will usually look around, get nervous, and say, “if it was me …” Then you can go for the kill and say something like, “I thought we were friends. I trusted you.” Oh man, they might even feel bad.
So Donnie-Boy is like the car dealership in that he uses people like most folks use toilet paper. He has no conception of right and wrong or of humor or pathos. He is a sociopath. These things don’t enter his psyche. He is lacking in understanding of those characteristics. He has to look to others to see if they find something funny, because he doesn’t understand humor. The same applies to things like “Lock He Up.” If you remember during the campaign he asked people if they liked the phrase. They roared their approval so he said, “Okay, we’ll use it.”
Did he thing Hillary should be locked up? Did he have any reason to believe she should be? I doubt it. I think he came up with reasons later.
When Donald says we need a wall, it’s like the service consultant in the dealership saying you need a new five thousand dollar part for your three thousand dollar car. The tech is not thinking. He’s just repeating something he’s been told. Now, because Donald is not only a sociopath but narcissistic, he can’t look bad so he digs in and insists that we gotta have the wall. The difference with the car dealership is the service consultant could care less (except if they are having some sort of point challenge then he might care.)
Now Donald is dug in. He wants his wall. He’s got to have it or he will look bad. He will (in his mind) be a loser. Can’t have that. So he has an address to the nation on prime time. Just before going on TV he sent out a letter to his loyal followers asking for money. The letter suggests that the money is for the wall, but if you read the letter it’s really to donate to his re-election campaign. When this was pointed out Donnie went crazy calling it fake news.
He and his sycophants also went crazy when the great dealmaker himself was locked in mortal negotiation with a mother of five who when he insisted that he have his wall she told him, “No.”
OH MY GOD! Someone told the president of the united states (I won’t capitalize when it’s Trump) that he can’t have what he wants.
I’m not sure. I wasn’t in the room but I’ve heard multiple accounts of who said what and who did what, but from what I can figure out the president fell to the floor, ran around in circles while keeping one shoulder to the ground (kind of like the old Pinky-Lee routine. You tube it.) and cried. Then he sat on the floor said he wasn’t getting up until he got his wall, crossed his arms around his ample waist, and sat there with his lower lip stuck out. Again Nancy said, “No.”
He pouted some more and Nancy finally said, “Okay, I’ll give you a dollar.”
He ran out of the room crying.
The other Republicans in the room seized on the point that Nancy would only give him a dollar. They said she wasn’t being serious. Not being serious? Are you kidding me? This whole crisis at the border isn’t serious. The only crisis is the humanitarian catastrophe Stephen Miller and the rest of you idiots have created. By the way, the art of the deal man isn’t serious. If he was he’d offer something. He’s offered nothing. All he wants is a show. Like “Lock Her Up” it’s all for show. It’s not serious. (Did he lock her up? Did he try? No. Case closed.)
I mean would you put five billion into something you don’t need, won’t work, and doesn’t add any value?
You would? Cool. Then give money to the president’s re-election committee.
How does that help? I have no idea. It’s your boy’s ask. Why don’t you ask him? We’ve already offered a dollar.
857 Days to Go
PS Dahruma looks pissed off