Monday, March 10, 2014


"I guess we look like everyone else now."

That's what my wife said as we drove to the grocery store. I was so focused on how easy it was to hear what she was saying that I barely grasped what she said. After a few long seconds, I agreed.

I'm new.
We had purchased a 2004 Lincoln LS earlier that day to replace a 25 year old car, which suddenly put us in a very common vintage vehicle. We're used to driving one of those old grandparent cars that are as square as the box that their parts came in. In one sense, nothing changed—we could blend in with the old car because it wasn't old enough to notice. Now we would blend in because everyone drives a ten year old car. To me—to both of usit felt like a cheaper brand of anonymity.

But blending in wasn't our focus that day. We were in shock as to how nice the car was—it was so quiet. So smooth. So quick. So easy to drive. It didn't take a mile to make a u-turn. The wipers didn't make you want to leave the car on fire in a ditch. And it was ours? The feeling of amazement was such that we felt like we were going to have to return what surely had to be a luxury rental car.

And this is how the other half has been living for quite some time. For me, moving up fifteen years in car development was almost like having a washing machine after years of going to the laundry mat. Almost. And I wasn't even the one who had to do that. But, regardless of who does the laundrydo you marvel at your car's capabilities? If your car is ten years old or newer, you damn well should.

But even with the new car, I guess my job remains the same: maintain. If it's old, keep it going. If it's new, keep it going until it's old. And maybe—if the car does its job, and I do mine—we'll one day find ourselves driving around in an amazing car, looking fifteen years behind the times, and still loving our hard-earned anonymity.