Thursday, January 29, 2009

Now I Know How HG Wells Felt

The following exchange occured in Yahoo Instant Messenger a few hours after the previous post. I would likely make more sense if you read the post below this one first..

mathguyone: Your blog entry today is one of the funniest things I have read in a long time

Glenotheunraedy: You liked it?

mathguyone: The Sixth Stair was a riot

mathguyone: On a scale of 0 to 137, how much of it is true?

Glenotheunraedy: :-) You're actually the only one who's IMed me and knew it was BS.

Glenotheunraedy: The story starts off true enough. I did have two dreams when I was like five just as I described, and frankly, you'd laugh me to scorn to know how many times I got spooked going up those stairs, but that's where the reality ends and where my goofiness starts.

mathguyone: The reason that you are getting so many concerned IMs is because you hang out with pagans and witches

mathguyone: When your friends hear that there is a ghost, they wonder if they left one behind when they were last over

Glenotheunraedy: lol

Glenotheunraedy: Not true

Glenotheunraedy: Some are a Christians.

mathguyone: Charismatics

Glenotheunraedy: hehehe

mathguyone: Every parking space is an answered prayer and every empty stapler is a demon

Glenotheunraedy: I had a Type III demon trapped in the copier at work yesterday.

Glenotheunraedy: Wait. Crap! I'm boned now.

mathguyone: Did it hurt?

Glenotheunraedy: Did you see the comment from Michelle?

Glenotheunraedy: Michelle is the sweetest, nicest girl you could meet. She plays WoW and I'd be horrified if I offended her.

mathguyone: But you did, didn't you?

Glenotheunraedy: I was going to post how this whole thing was just BS in another post in a day or two, but after her impassioned post, I'd feel horrible.

mathguyone: She believes in ghosts

Glenotheunraedy: I don't know what to do. I guess I'll have to make things worse.

Glenotheunraedy: I’ll post some more stories about how strange goings-on have been happening and really stir up the pot, get people concerned for me. I'll just have to keep this lie up until I die.

mathguyone: The only thing to do now is have an exorcism

Glenotheunraedy: Hey... Yeah..!

mathguyone: You'll make everyone happy

Glenotheunraedy: That's a great way out!

mathguyone: That will tie up the loose ends

Glenotheunraedy: Come on over tonite and we'll film one.

Glenotheunraedy: That way I can get rid of the ghosts (and this story) and everyone else feels closure.


Glenotheunraedy: And they won't be mad at me.

Glenotheunraedy: I've got a couple of nice camera's here. Come help me stage something screwy.

mathguyone: You'll need to kill a chicken. I do not know why, but they always kill a chicken

Glenotheunraedy: Where the heck am I going to find a live chicken?

Glenotheunraedy: ...On a Thursday?

mathguyone: You also may need to break all of your windows

Glenotheunraedy: Oh, crap, you're right.

mathguyone: I usually am about these things

Glenotheunraedy: They always have a big asplosion at the end of horror movies. :-(

Glenotheunraedy: We need green goo as well.

Glenotheunraedy: Lots of it.

Glenotheunraedy: And guns that shoot weird glowy beams.

mathguyone: This is going to be one costly blog entry my friend

Glenotheunraedy: What else can I do? I can't have everyone mad at me.

Glenotheunraedy: I've got some money set aside for the baby's college. Maybe I can tap into that.

mathguyone: You either tell the truth or you claim that you confronted the ghost and convinced him to move on

Glenotheunraedy: You're right.

Glenotheunraedy: I have to do the right thing.

Glenotheunraedy: So, what can I say to convince this ghost to move on?

mathguyone: Disembodied spirits are often open to suggestions.

Glenotheunraedy: Like pie?

mathguyone: Yes, but that's not important right now

Glenotheunraedy: Chaosjackal is pretty concerned too. He wants me to buy a special infrared, paranormal sound recorder.

Glenotheunraedy: He says he's willing to buy it for me.

Glenotheunraedy: What should I say?

mathguyone: Remember, we're just covering up a lie with another lie. There's no reason to spend money

Glenotheunraedy: So, should I accept it as a gift then?

mathguyone: Take it, sell it on Ebay, and say it way destroyed during the battle

mathguyone: Obviously

Glenotheunraedy: That's great thinking.

mathguyone: do you want to hear something odd?

Glenotheunraedy: Odd is very relative, especially given this conversation.

mathguyone: I just read this today – (

mathguyone: There is a company for just this sort of thing

Glenotheunraedy: Zoinks.

mathguyone: You can wrap this up and not even lie

Glenotheunraedy: Yeah, by hiring a company to come in and dismantle my house? I don't have that kind of money!

mathguyone: Maybe they can do some pro bone work.

Glenotheunraedy: Accent on the "bone"

mathguyone: bono

mathguyone: "pro bone" is funnier

Glenotheunraedy: I think I'm already getting "pro boned" enough as it is.

mathguyone: You want a professional for that sort of thing otherwise you could get hurt

Glenotheunraedy: Geesh... Ya know what? Janet really is spending the night at her dad's house. I have to spend the night alone. I'm going to be all jumpy now.

Glenotheunraedy: What if something really does happen?

The Sixth Stair

Two of the worst nightmares I had as a child took place in the setting of my grandparent's home. One entailed going down to the wine cellar and being attacked by some strange wolf-like creature. The other involved a strange energy-based alien life form that was roaming through the house searching for me. I can vividly remember hiding in absolute terror under a chair in the parlor while it passed through, trying to find me.

Typical, childish foolishess that we have all experienced.

However, what was once my grandparent's home is Upham Manor, the home I now own and live in. It's a wonderful place filled with my fondest memories, first Christmases, and the echoes of the laughter of loved ones.

So why is it I cannot walk up the hall stairs after 11pm without being frightened?

I'll come downstairs to the kitchen for a drink or a bit of a snack after a few hours of playing World of Warcraft, turn the lights on and make my way to the kitchen. I'll grab a drink and then make my way back upstairs giving each room a looking-over and shutting the light behind me.

I get as far as the sixth stair when, invariably, it hits me. A tingling sensation that runs up my back and stands my hair on end. When I take the next step, I hear it, I always hear it: the steps below me start to creak. A few times I've whirled around (something I no longer do) and I always catch a bit of a shadow flittering away back into the parlor, but then stopping before it quite goes out of sight. And then, slowly, it begins to move back toward me.

At that point I'm taking the stairs three at a time, bounding up onto the landing, throwing myself into my room, and closing the door behind me. This is an almost daily routine, and it has been for quite some time.

However, in recent weeks, things have gotten even stranger. And last nite, well, last nite almost sent me over the edge.

Objects have been showing up in the baby's crib. Simple things. A toy. A book. Something from the baby dresser. My wife and I have always been told not to put anything in the crib with the baby. We don't even use blankets for him at this age because we don't want to risk him becoming entangled in them. So the first time I found a toy in there, I didn't think much of it, I just put it back in his toy box. The next time it was one of his shoes. I asked Janet about it and she denied having anything to do with it, which was a bit disconcerting and almost resulted in an argument. I let it pass again.

The next time, it was the remote control from the small TV we have in his room. Janet found it and she asked me how it got there. At that point, we became concerned, and I think a little bit spooked.

So last night we stayed up and watched the baby monitor for about three hours. We could see the baby was asleep, resting peacefully, only moving now and then to roll over as he tends to do. We layed in bed, thinking how silly this was, but without talking. At one point, when we were both getting pretty sleepy, the speaker on the monitor crackled. Then, with no explanation, a shadow passed in front of the camera completely obscuring our view for about 3 seconds. I can't even express the shivers that went through my body. I looked at Janet and her eyes were as wide as saucers.

I leaped out of bed and ran across the hall to the baby's room, threw the door open and turned on the light. There, in the crib next to the baby was a hair brush.

Janet is taking the baby and staying at her dad's tonight. I'm not sure what it is I'm going to do.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


It looks like BlogSpot finally fixed the little check-box responses that are found below each blog. I had tried to customize them repeatedly in the past but it would not save what I put in. It looks like they finally fixed that. you can click a box to provide feedback, not that I want to discourage comments. It looks like I can only fit four in. Any suggestions as to what they should say or do the ones I provided suffice?

Monday, January 26, 2009

Movement in Nothing Flat

Here's something that sucks: Moving your cube at work.

Milton Shmeggle in the Department of Redundancy Dept. is too far from his boss, Mr. Cleaverhook. Meanwhile Peggy Pigglesworth is separated from the rest of the potato peelers on her team by a daunting three rows of cubes. And what's worse, Blaine Mellon, Vice President of Processed Cheeses was given an office that was discovered to be four and one half inches smaller than that of Manager Rupert Fezziwick. There is only one solution to these terrible atrocities: We must rearrange the office.

And so we played the Cube Farm Shuffle today at work. I unplugged all eight hundred miles of chord, cable, and conduit that connects me and my computers to the rest of the world, baled the bushels of paper that I should have discarded weeks ago, and began long process of emptying my desk drawers.

So now, three hours later, here I am. Forty feet from where I started, in an identical cube. Only now that I have one that overlooks the water bubbler and the bathrooms. I figure I'll entertain myself by keeping a log book of who goes in and how long they take.

Somewhere, somehow, someone is now happy. I'm just not sure who that is or why.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Never Again

Those of you who know me have probably heard me say it several times before, but this was the last straw: I will never go into another Dunkin' Donuts as long as I live.

If you're not from the northeast, you may not be fully aware of the cultural phenomenon that is Dunkin' Donuts. This is a coffee shop chain that is so dominant, if all of the Dunkies in New England were placed next to each other, they'd probably cover the entire state of Rhode Island. You can't swing a dead cat on the South Shore without hitting a Dunk's. There are two within 200 yards of my house.

And I will never go into either of them ever again.

Here are the top five reasons why:

1) Utter inability to get the order correct. How hard is it to put just a little tiny bit of milk into a coffee and do nothing else? Two of the last three times I got a coffee there, I had to bring it back.
"Give me a medium with just a little bit of milk only."
"Do you want sugar with that?"
I sigh and repeat, "No. Just a little bit of milk only. Keep it dark."
It is inevitable that I walk out with a lukewarm cup of milk, heavily sweetened, 30% of the time.

2) Dunkin' Donuts hires only those who have been rejected for employment by Walmart. "Too stupid to work for Wally World? Come join our team!"
Non-English speakers are given priority hiring status.

3) Reason number three is the one that really makes me angry. The line can be out the door, but Mbutu and Anitchka are standing behind the counter making certain that they keep themselves occupied checking the paper cups for spots or making sure the napkins are properly folded. The first skill they are taught as Dunkin' Donuts employee is never, ever, make eye-contact with a customer -- they may ask you to actually take their order.

4) Reason number four is the weasel who manages the shop just off the highway in Randolph along Rte 128. You know who you are. This morning when I asked why you don't open a second register given the long lines, you had the gall to tell me I had only been waiting in line for two minutes. The line of people behind me erupted in angry protest at that bold face lie. I only regret that I didn't hang around long enough after getting my coffee to see them jump the counter and beat the bag out of you.

5) Diminished quality. When I was a kid, I can remember my aunt's showing up for family parties with a box of delicious donuts from Dunkies. They were awesome. The chocolate donuts were big and all nook-and-cranny-ish, and smeared with sweet, delicious glaze. That was when the donuts were made in each shop by expert donut makers. Remember the Fred the Baker commercials? "Time to make the donuts." Well, Fred has been replaced by Stan the truck driver. He's the guy that delivers cold, tasteless, factory-made donuts to each shop. No more in-house bakery. Nope. Those have been replaced by the "central production plant" where all Dunkin' brand donuts are made and then shipped to the stores.

I was working as System Administrator for Dunkin' Donut's corporate office right here in Randolph when Joe, the C-something-O made the announcement for that little change in a company wide meeting. "We're going to start making donuts at a central plant and then shipping them to each shop to cut costs!" A roomful of drones dutifully applauded. My head snapped back in shock. I wanted to jump out and shout, "Have you lost your mind!?"

So that's it. I'm done with Dunk's. I'll have to dust off the ol' Mr. Coffee and program it to have my coffee ready for me each morning. I can make a better cup of coffee for less money anyway. And I won't have to speak Hungarian to get it.

Thursday, January 15, 2009


I'm an ardent user of "Stumble," a simple web based tool that takes you from one interesting or funny website to another. Last night, I stumbled upon a video that seared an impression into me that will likely be with me for some time.

The video begins with a young girl, perhaps 16, setting up the video camera by which you see her and then turning up some dance her stereo. The girl is "dressed" (to use the word very loosely), in one of those Brittney-Spears-inspired whore-style gettups that is purposefully intended to invoke the most prurient of interests in men.

Then she begins to dance.

I probably don't need to tell you that I'm not talking about the Fred Astaire, Ginger Rogers sort of dancing. No. She begins to undulate in the sort of ... well, you get the point.

All this goes on for maybe three seconds. And then the real point of the video becomes apparent.

The door swings open and her father steps into the room.

Now, at this point as a viewer of the video, I felt my emotional gears grind from third straight into reverse without the benefit of a clutch. My thoughts of "This is crazy" were suddenly replaced by the shock and anguish that was so apparent in her father's first words:


I'm struggling to try to describe what he was so clearly feeling at that time. Words fail here, but the feeling was palpable. If he had walked in on the act of murder he couldn't have been more horrified. As the girl dove to shut off the music, the father strained to speak. Somewhere in the torrent of confused sentences I could clearly hear him say, "that's not how a young girl is supposed to behave." He was angry, but God bless him, he wasn't violent. When he looked up and saw that she was acutally filming this, more than anything I could feel that sort of crushing anguish of a defeated man.

In that split second of horror, I saw her life flash before my eyes. That moment of her birth and the look on her daddy's face. The nights he sat up with her while she was a sick infant. All those diapers he changed; her first day of school; watching her open Christmas presents. All all those times that she'll never know about: his worrying about bills to take care of his family, his staying late at work in order to provide for them; all the millions of things that a dad does to keep his child safe, and loved, and happy. At that point, he must have been asking himself "How could you do this?"

So I guess I come now to my point of this blog. I ask these questions rhetorically, but feel free to leave your comments:

At what point does a child metamorphasize from that perfect little baby into that person that breaks your heart? What was the fork in the road that leads to this? And most importantly, how can I, as a father, prevent it?

There is a verse in scripture that says, "Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old, he will not depart from it." That is some reassurance. But I've seen good parents -- great parents -- go through hell with their kids for whom they've seemingly done everything "right." Kids are their own people. Kids will explore their world and try things that they see others do. Each failure, each heartbreak may be solved, forgiven, forgotten, and left in the past. But as I look at the photo of my son on my computer desktop, all I can think is, "Is it possible that I can help you to avoid sin, failure, and pain?"

I can see a baby. And I can see the end product of what I hope and pray he will become. It's just everything in the middle that seems so uncertain, so scary to me. Maybe I'm making too much of this. I don't know. I do know that as a new dad, it freaked the heck out of me.

I'm not sure how this video came to be on the Internet after how it turned out. I can only imagine that maybe someone posted it as a lesson.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


What you are looking at is the less than half a sammich that I could not reasonably finish today. This roast beast sammich (with tomato and ample mayo) is from the Green Gardens in Hyde Park.

When my father first took me to the Green Garden some 25 years ago, he encouraged me to order the large roast beast sub. I did. The man behind the deli counter set a side of cow on the deli slicer and then laid a subroll along his left fore arm. With his right hand, he began to pull slide the meat back and forth over the blade, dropping slice after succulent slice into the roll.

After six slices, I began to think, "This looks good." At nine slices, I realized it looks really good.

...11...12...13...14... I think it was during the 13th slice that I realized my dad must have put this guy up to it. But no, he didn't. That's just the way they do it.

I took my boss there today. After my sammich had been compiled (accent on the "pile") and wrapped, I told my boss to set it up on the deli scale. It weighed 1.47 pounds. The amazing thing about this is that a pound of roast beast at the Green Garden will run you $6.99. My pound-and-a-half sammich made to order with mayo, a nice roll, and tomato, only cost me $6.50.

Food has always been much more than a means to an ends for me. However, there is something uniquely satisfying about a sub that's as big as your leg.

But, Oh! The quality! Tastey. Tender. If I had no teeth I still would have been able to chew it with no problem.

Mmm... meat.

P.S. I won't set foot in a Subway. The one time I did so, I watched the woman take a handful of meat and put it on a scale. Then she started taking some meat back off. I recoiled in horror at this act of anathema. Clearly those places know nothing of the art of sammich making.

(And even less about sammich eating.)

Monday, January 12, 2009

Misplaced Priorities

Something just became obvious to me. When George Bush was elected (and again when he was reelected) I heard a disturbing number of liberals make the following sorts of statements: "He's not my president." "I'm leaving the country."

More recently, with Barak Obama elected, what I'm hearing from the conservatives is, "I didn't vote for him, but I sure hope he succeeds."

Makes me wonder where people's real priorities lie. Wait, no... actually, it makes it pretty darn clear to me where their priorities lie.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

An Ode to Entenmann's

O, Entenmann's donut!
How I love thy crumbly shell!
Thy noble empty center
Fills my empty tummy so well.

The World of Warcrack

Hey, you don't have to ask me twice, I know I'm addicted. In fact, I am more heavily addicted to the computer game World of Warcraft than I have been at any point previously in the last four years of playing it.

It started late February 2004. Mathias, Rythter, and many of my other local friends had been telling me about this new video game that they were playing and insisting that I try it. It's a MMORPG - a Massively Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game. They said I'd love it. Well, I knew I wouldn't. I had tried its predecessor, Ever Quest, some time previously and hated it. Why would this be any different?

Janet urged me to try it. "I'll buy it for you for your birthday." No. I don't want it. No. Don't get it for me. No. I won't play it. And what's more, when I realized you had to pay a monthly subscription fee to keep playing, I was livid. No way my blue-blooded New England Yankee frugality would stand for that.

Yep, she bought it anyway.

I rolled up an undead priest whose name I no longer recall. Not that there is any actual dice rolling involved at all. It's all on the computer. Just shows how pervasive some Role Playing concepts are. I played him for two levels. I hated him. Rythter told me to try something different. He invited me to join him on his server on the Alliance side. I perused the class options at my disposal. There was only one. (There can be only one.) I rolled a Paladin.

Now I needed a name. Hmm... Something basic. I tried a few bland sounding, average names. They had all been taken. Then I tried Wulfgar. Taken. I tried Wolfgar. Taken. I typed in Wolfgaar. Bingo. I was in.

That was four years ago. While most of the friends I've made in WoW play two, three, four, eight characters, I've made playing my one single character into a science. I do have a couple other "toons", but I almost never play them at all. Most people refer to their toon in the third person. I call Wolfgaar "I".

So why do I play?

Ask anyone of the friends that I play with and I think we'll all agree: we play for the people. It's the array of truly special people that I've met in the last four years that keeps me coming back. I've made a number of friends that I truly would lament were they lost to me. While they may not be local, they are as much "real life" friends as any others that I have here living near Upham Manor.

Reason number two, I'd say is the amazing depth and complexity of the game. You can fight monsters. You can follow storyline quests. You can fight against opposing players. You can become a professional and craft amazing items to sell or give to friends. You can get involved in commerce, auctions, and the economy. You can fly on a dragon, you can ride a horse, you can construct mechanical devices. You can role play and be anyone you want to be. If you can't find something in World of Warcraft to draw your attention, you're probably already ganked.

I did some calculating. Figuring that I play several hours each night every night I possibly can, over the course of four years, I've spent over a year of my life in WoW.

All I can think is that one day, I'll be on my death bed thinking about all those days I spent in World of Warcraft and I'm going to say to myself, "I really regret not having seen all of The Black Temple."

Nightmare on Upham Street

My boss wandered by my desk this morning and stopped to crack a joke, as he is wont to do. Then he got real serious and said, "You look tired." I had to think about it for a moment. I was tired. I had a miserable morning, and, in fact, I arrived ten minutes later than I had intended.

It dawned on me I had experienced a miserable nightmare last nite, one that I now recall waking up from shouting and, I think, cursing.

Janet and Benjamin spent the night at her father's last evening to give him a little company and some comfort. I spent the evening playing World of Warcraft and having a sandwich at around midnight. I retired around two o'clock in the morning -- an hour that, while late, really isn't very unusual for me. I went to sleep with the TV on, as I often do when Janet is away. The last thing I remember was the closing credits of a Twilight Zone episode.

The next thing I remember was beating flailing around and shouting and awaking from a terrible dream. In the dream, I was driving down the road with a passenger. Suddenly, from behind two poles on either side of the street, two police officers literally jumped out and called me to pull over. I did. They informed me that I had run through some sort of safety zone without stopping. Confused, I walked over to the sign and poined out that it did not require me to stop. That didn't matter, they said. They claimed that they were holding stop signs themselves, which they then showed me. My argument that they were hiding behind two poles as I approached did not seem to interest them.

The rest is a blur. But I do recall threats against me, a scuffle, demands, and a promise that my insurance would become so expensive, I'd have to sell my house to drive. I finally figured I had nothing left to lose and I went all "Bruce Banner" on them.

That's when I woke up, angry, crying, and flailing around pretty violently. I was a mess. I shut the TV and remembered thinking that I'd never get back to sleep. I did, and apparently pretty quickly. But I guess I'm still carrying the exhaustion around with me today. At least I know why I'm tired now.

I hate dreams like that.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Great Firsts in American History

In just a few short days, the United States will swear in a new president. This will be a historic first in US history. A time when millions of what could be termed a previously disenfranchised minority can truly feel proud. Yes, my friends. For the very first time ever, the United States has elected to the highest office in a the land... a socialist.

I wanted to get this blog out quickly before things started to take shape and I looked like I was simply stating the obvious. I want to make a prediction for the coming 4 years. Here it is.

I predict that the presidency of Barack Hussein Obama, Jr. will be one of the most corrupt, scandal-ridden administrations in US history.

I predict that over the next four years, his cabinet members and appointees will be paraded through the press, one after another, each with their hands caught in the cookie jar, double-dealing, conflicts of interest, tax evasion, misappropriation, etc. You name it, it's going to happen to this administration.

I think this administration is going to make that of Ulysses Simpson Grant look good.

Why am I saying this? Is it a race thing? Is it a socialist thing? Nope.

I'm saying it because of the arrogance I see in this administration. I see it because Obama and his cronies (and that's what they are) believe they're going to the White House with a mandate. They are convinced that we all love them, that they're the darlin's of the country, and that we believe they can do no wrong. It's going to go right to their head, and it's going to poison them.

I'm saying it because the Chicago political machine that spawned him is rotten to the core and as corrupt as Tammany Hall back in the 1850s. Obama hasn't even taken office yet and the corruption in Chicago has started bubbling to the surface.

I'm saying it because the people he'll no doubt put into power have wanted it for a very long time. When they get it, they're going to act as if they deserved it.

I'm saying it because the Clinton Administration made corruption okay. "Hey, if Bill can do it, why can't we?"

I wanted to put this into writing now because, I think, after people are done picking me apart for saying it, in a year or two we'll all look back and quietly nod.

Bumper Sticker

I found this one just the other day parked outside a bowling alley:

"Support our troops. We'll need them to overthrow the government."

I lol'ed.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Bail Out or Wash Out?

When I got into the driver's seat of my Nissan Maxima today, it marked the 5,000th time I had done so.

OK, that's probably not true. It's not like I have been keeping a count. What is true is that this is the fifteenth year that I have been driving Nissan Maximas. If I got into my car each day roughly 333 days out of 365 over the last 15 years, that would mark 5,000 times I did so.

No doubt those figures are wildly inaccurate, but the first line did make for a decent hook to keep you reading.

What is less subjective is the conversation, or rather, the rant that Math Guy and I had in Yahoo Instant Messenger this morning about American cars. We're both persuaded that the American auto industry is a disaster that probably should have ceased to exist ten years ago. Bail out? Are you joking?
We blame the unions. We blame arrogant upper management who, for decades, had their heads so firmly inserted into their backsides that they really honestly thought they could manufacture crap and force us to buy it and keep us coming back for more.

It's insulting. I was a die hard buy American sort of guy for years. Even before I owned my first car, I had bought into the large American-made automobile mantra of "baseball, hot dogs, apple-pie, and Chevrolet". It only took owning a couple to change my mind.

I'm on my fourth Nissan Maxima now. The 1992 I first owned was picked out by my mom, and I'd probably still be driving it if she hadn't "taken it away" from me. Her Lincoln (yes, big American car) had just died and I was driving her to a dealership to shop for a used car.

"Do you know what you want to get, Mom?"
"Yes. I'm getting this car."
"Oh, I ... um... what? How is that going to happen?"
"You're going to trade this car in and buy another one. Then I'm going to buy this car back from them. You get a newer car and I get a car I know and trust, cleaned and with a warranty."

That's when I bought the 1994. I'd still be driving it today if Janet hadn't introduced herself and my front end into the rear end of that one-ton pickup. We also owned a 2003 Maxima. I drove that for a few years and then decided to get another. I'm convinced that this 2007 Nissan Maxima is the greatest car ever made. My boss drives one too. You need one as well. Go get one.

In four Nissan Maximas, I've never broken down once. Apart from regular maintenance and such, I haven't spent more than $1,200 for all repairs total. That's in fifteen years. (For those of you not named "Math Guy", that's less than $100 a year in repairs.)

Contrariwise, I've owned two Fords in my life. I've come to realize that an illuminated "Check Engine Light" comes standard on all Fords.

So screw 'em. Let Detroit go under. I wouldn't drive an American car if you gave it to me.