Wednesday, May 20, 2015

I'm Really Pushing My Luck!! (Musical Tribute)

May 20, 2015
The Onion: Toyota Recalls 1993 Camry Due To Fact That Owners Really Should Have Bought Something New By Now

While Toyota is reportedly confining its recall to the 1993 Camry, it also issued a warning to owners of 1994 to 1998 models alerting them to the fact that they were really starting to push it.

Hahaha! I'm starting to think that they can pry the 1996 Toyota Camry XLE V6 from my cold dead fingers. That's 19 years and I don't even have 100k miles on it yet!

Can you imagine what this service-based consumer economy would be doing if more people were as frugal as me? I may have bought a nice car, but I did it with expectations that it would be with me for a very, very long time. So far, so good. Based on how well it is holding up, it may be a close race between its remaining life expectancy and my own. No joke.

It's apparently not just long-term bonds that I buy with intent to hold to maturity. Come to think of it, I've also only bought one house in my life. Still living in it. One and done. Continually buying and selling houses isn't cheap, not that the heavily biased National Association of Realtors would like me to point this fact out. Commissions dry up if everyone buys and holds. Go figure.

This economy demands trading and churning, for if it slows, so too GDP growth. Therefore, for the love of all that's holy, please keep up with the Joneses so I don't have to do it. That means buying a new car every time you buy a new house. Never be satisfied with what you have! Keep constantly on the move! Use your day trading profits to extract all that new prosperity! Or not. Your call. Life in the fast lane is not without its risks.


fried said...

A Toyota should be good for at least 150k you have years to go.
This mantra to never be satisfied is interesting. I leave in a wealthy part of Manhattan, rent-stabilized. All around me fairly ordinary one-bed apts. are a million plus. Street parking is loaded with high-end cars, most of them with bumps and paint-scrapes. This in a town with great public transit.
Be grateful for what you have is good advice, be happy about what you've missed is better.
No sky high and rising maintenance costs on that coop, no baby sitting a car 3 times a week for alternate side of the street parking.
Being merely middle-class you do avoid some stresses.

Stagflationary Mark said...


It's a rat race and the fat cats encourage it. I refuse to buy into the keeping up with the Joneses mentality. What a painful way to live. There's no "winning" in that game. There's only envy and stress.

Even if you have the nicest house and nicest car on your block, deep down you know that someone has an even nicer house and nicer car just one block over? Where does it end?

Rather than strive to always have the most, which is a nearly impossible task, I find it much easier to strive not to have the least. With 7 billion people on this planet, it sure doesn't take much effort. It also means I can wake up each day and be truly thankful for what I have.

1. I don't currently live in a war zone.
2. There's running water.
3. There's ample food.
4. There's a roof over my head.
5. I'm reasonably healthy.

Many people throughout history would have called that a reason to be blissful. Why should I disagree?

How did we get to the point where people seem to think the only road to happiness lies in the consumption and accumulation of discretionary stuff? What happened to simply looking up at the stars on a cloudless night? Or admiring the scenery on a hike? Or simply closing one's eyes and allowing imagination to kick in? Free, free, and free.

Troy said...

I hit a curb in 2008 on my 2000 Miata which broke my radiator and like an idiot I drove it for a while, causing cylinder damage.

$6000 for a new engine later, my now-15 year old car has just 30,000 miles on the engine at least.

While $6000 for a short block is robbery, man, all cars should be upgradeable like this,

Kinda like PCs, actually. I'm a big OS X guy but Apple is really pissing me off with their minimal product line and active hostility to user upgrades.

My 2006 Mac Pro died last month, and my killer 2008 laptop kicked the bucket late last year, so I've been reduced to running Windows 10 on my 2007 "Conroe" (2.4 GHz Core2Duo) PC. (Popping in a $80 SATA3 SSD boot drive was a great upgrade!)

For just $700:

I could upgrade the box to a front-rank machine again (reusing the perfectly good $150 ATX case, $100 500W P/S, and graphics card ($200 in 2011, it does DX11 so it's still good enough for my purposes).

Waiting to see if Apple announces anything interesting at their conference next month. Not expecting anything, alas.

The above kit can actually run the latest OS X without too much difficulty, now that x86 has converged to where Apple is (mainly UEFI, x64).

If you haven't heard, that M.2 gumstick drive is the future. Wiring fixed storage directly to the CPU (via PCIe 3.0 4X) is crazy.

Stagflationary Mark said...


At the 1600 mile mark, my car was the center car in a collision sandwich. Did about $7000 in damage. Hit the car in front of me. Car behind plowed into me.

I wasn't paying emough attention, nor was the person behind me. Traffic never came to a sudden halt there in the past and I was complacent. A pedestrian told the police that a car ahead of me turned suddenly without signaling. Didn't think it was really my fault. Didn't stop me from taking the blame though, which was fair. I should have been able to stop. The person behind me also took the blame. It was her birthday. D'oh!

My car didn't do all that much damage to the car in front. I actually slid under it. Did extensive damage to my front end though.