with us running out of space in the back seat, the volkswagon jetta is running out of time … which means it’s about time to update the automotive c.v. once again:

  • 1978 Oldsmobile Delta Eighty-Eight (burgundy) — a big hunk of classic detroit metal that regularly seated eight for late tuesday night college trips to the beach. mostly totaled when it had an untimely meeting with a 12 point buck on the highway one sunday afternoon. the survived, the car not-so-much.
  • 1994 Dodge Spirit (maroon) — a graduation gift from college from my parents (above, right) the little spirit-that-could survived ridiculously long commutes up and down both sides of I-95. effectively totaled with the transmission, steering and a/c all collapsed at the exact same time, after almost a decade of service.
  • 2000 Mazda 626 (silver) — the first car i ever bought with my own money. sexy. looked like a jaguar from the sides (above, left). my ownership was tragically cut short when i met/married the lady sparkler, and it became ridiculously clear that we only needed one car between us.
  • 2001 Volkswagon Jetta (silver) — the car that killed my beloved mazda. the good: it was newer, had less miles, and was fully paid off. oh, and *fun* to drive. the bad? made soon after VW exported their manufacturing to nafta mexico, and a complete lemon in every sense of the word.

so, what’s next? a car that works would be nice …

right now, the jetta’s transmission is failing, the front bushings/suspension is creaking, the air conditioner only works at highway speeds, knobs are falling off the dashboard, both wing mirrors have broken off/are held on by duct tape, the stereo occasionally stops working for days-on-end, one of the fold-out cup-holders doesn’t fold out anymore, and we’ve done ~$8,000 worth of work on the car in the last 24k miles.

outside of that, the lady sparkler wants a car where i can sit farther from the airbag in the steering wheel (because the seat is jacked forward to make room for the big child seat in the small back seat).

personally, i’d like something with better gas mileage, so i feel less guilty about driving to work everyday — i stopped bicycle commuting not long after the lady sparkler got preggers — a guilt made worse by working for one of the planet’s largest conservation organizations.

oh, and we’d both like a car that we don’t have to panic/worry/gnash-our-teeth about over the next, say, 6-8 years.

the excitement starts tomorrow.