Monday, October 25, 2004

Sell The Red Car

Four years ago you bought a car. Red is your favorite color. The car was red and cute and you fell in love with it. The blue car was sensible and boring, so you bought the red one instead. Ever since then it has pulled dangerously to the right. You’ve gone into the ditch several times. You’ve hit pedestrians. Maybe some of them should have been more careful, but that’s hardly the point. Now everybody runs when they see you coming. You maybe don’t notice it, but people are beginning to laugh. You tell yourself none of that matters; it’s your car after all. But it does matter.

What matters, is that the car doesn’t work the way you were told it would. The way it drives is making it very expensive to insure. People won’t ride with you. That should matter to you. Some of the features they sold you on were never actually in the car. They say they’re going to install these things, but have they? The features that are there have never worked the way they’re supposed to. This is important, too. There’s no left hand turn signal. You say that’s O.K., because the car won’t turn left anyway, but shouldn’t a car be able to turn left now and then, just to keep you on the road? Shouldn’t you have that choice? You can’t believe the fuel gauge. The car keeps stalling in traffic, which is embarrassing. There are no brakes. The AC is worthless. The heater only works in the summer. The car burns oil and guzzles gas. (Do we need to make a list?) Wherever you go you trail a poisonous blue cloud behind you, which can’t be very good for your health, or your neighbors’. Because it’s so unreliable, it’s making you unreliable too. Your job is in jeopardy. You bought it because it was cheap, but the repairs and hidden costs are bankrupting you. Other people are getting rich at your expense. Still, it’s red, which is your favorite color, and you love it. What should you do?

It may embarrass you. It might make you look like a flip-flopper. But I think you should sell the red car. Get rid of it. That would be the smart thing to do. Being patient, sticking with something no matter what, sometimes makes you look like a stubborn fool, which you’re not. This car is a real lemon. I think it sounds dangerous. Believing in this car isn’t going to make it run any better. (The only people who still believe in the red car are the ones who sold it to you in the first place. Think about that.) Love shouldn’t blind you to a car’s shortcomings. Sell it. You don’t need to tell anyone about it. Is it anyone else’s business? If people ask, you can just say someone stole it out of your driveway. You can laugh about that. Sell the darn thing. The next car you buy may not be perfect, it may not be red, it might even be blue, but it’s sure to run a heck of a lot better than this one.

(There's very little time left. Copy, paste and send this to anyone who might still be persuaded, and let's turn this country back to true blue. Pasquino)


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