Friday, September 22, 2006

RIP Fiona

Whelp, Geico is going to total my car. Poor Fiona. I went to get all my personal effects and take my license plate. It was a sad sight to see her sitting out by herself, topless.

The body shop had "stripped" her to make it easier for the adjustor to ascertain all the damage. It was a pretty gnarled mess, with the bent frame

and so much crumpled metal.

The body shop guy said I'm lucky to have walked away uninjured. Although I will admit there has been a bit of lower back soreness today, complete with radiation into the lower extremities--I know enough from my stint in the orthopedic department of a disability insurance company that those symptoms are not good, but I'm getting a massage tomorrow so we'll see how I feel after that. If symptoms remain on Monday, it's back to the doctor with me.)

So apparently when an insurance company totals a car, they don't give you Blue Book value. The Geico guy said he would have to get a market survey done to determine the true value of the car. Considering I bought it used less than three months ago, and I bought it for well under Blue Book, I assumed he'd come back with a figure close to what I paid for it, perhaps even a tad higher. He called today with a figure $1200 less than what I paid! I indicated my dismay and he said he would review the survey to make sure it was done properly, and although he had a super full day of appointments, he would try to get back to me ASAP. He did not return my call by close of business today, so I assume I will not hear from him until Monday.

Which means I have the rental for the weekend, and can go around to test drive some new cars. My first instinct was to go back to Carmax since the process was relatively hassle-free, as far as car buying goes. But then I remembered that after I bought Fiona, my coworker said I should have talked to Jason, our director of sales, first, because he has car auction connections and could probably save me a ton of money. Ever the skeptic, I assumed buying through an auction would mean I'd have limited choices and would risk getting damaged goods. Not so. Jason said he has a couple buddies who own car dealerships, and they travel around the country weekly to acquire inventory. Yes, there is crap available, but Jason has bought many cars through them and can attest to their high standards. Many of the vehicles are coming out of leases or were dealership demo cars. Jason's friends only bid on the best for him, and would do so for me as well. I can specify make, model, year, mileage, and features. Of course, availability varies so I may have to wait if I'm picky, but I could end up saving about $3000 going this route. Or, I could upgrade to an even nicer car. Suddenly an Acura or a Lexus is not out of reach for me. I see myself in an Acura more than a Lexus. To me, this looks like a rich person's car:

But this is right up my alley:

I'm also considering a Nissan Maxima, because they are so nice looking. The only bummer about these nicer rides is that nine times out of ten they come with leather interiors. What is it with expensive cars and dead animal skins? I have always had cloth, not only due to cost, but also by choice. I may end up having to let go of that criterion, although I really hope not to.

. . .

Meanwhile, a new development in the construction zone of US1 in Cary. Holy streetlights, Batman! Two whole miles of lighted highway. Be still my beating heart.

. . .

Today at work we got new phone systems, which necessitated the running of cables and cords and such up in the ceiling. This is how it's done in small corporate America, folks:

(That's Jason on the right, and my boss Jace on the left.)

. . .

And lastly, a license plate I saw while sitting at a stoplight today. Aww.

Have a lovely weekend, everyone! Oh, and happy belated first day of Fall. We're supposed to be in the upper 80's this weekend. Hopefully the last hurrah of summer. Back to the 70's next week. Aaahhh, just the way I like it.


  1. Excellent blog and thanks for the opportunity to share my thoughts here. I am putting together a collection of photos and information on Acuras and so far I managed to cover some of the models, such as the Acura MDX, Acura RSX or the sporty Acura NSX. I hope you’ll find the website to be interesting, in case you want to pay it a visit.

    Enjoy your day!

    Michael R.
    Acura photos on

  2. Wow! Completely totalling Fiona?? :-( She was so pretty. Good luck finding a great deal on new wheels, and take it easy.

  3. I was also surprised your car was totalled. But you've got my attention with this "back to the 70s" news. Ahhhhh ... we're still hitting and by this time of year, that is enough already. :)

    Have fun with the new car choice.