The Paradox Of Choice

I had the idea for this post and post title before I discovered that a book by the same name was authored by American psychologist Barry Schwartz and published in 2004. The sub-titles of the book are “Why More Is Less” and “How The Culture Of Abundance Robs Us Of Satisfaction.”

From the Amazon review:

 

“Whether we’re buying a pair of jeans, ordering a cup of coffee, selecting a long-distance carrier, applying to college, choosing a doctor, or setting up a 401(k), everyday decisions—both big and small—have become increasingly complex due to the overwhelming abundance of choice with which we are presented.

As Americans, we assume that more choice means better options and greater satisfaction. But beware of excessive choice: choice overload can make you question the decisions you make before you even make them, it can set you up for unrealistically high expectations, and it can make you blame yourself for any and all failures. In the long run, this can lead to decision-making paralysis, anxiety, and perpetual stress. And, in a culture that tells us that there is no excuse for falling short of perfection when your options are limitless, too much choice can lead to clinical depression.”

 

In Economics, one of the major tenets of the discipline is Diminishing Marginal Utility. That is, the nth + 1 or nth + 2 of something is not as satisfying as the nth. A logical extension of that principle is that a state of negative marginal utility can be reached.

Although the days of all you can eat, serve yourself buffet meals are probably over, I can remember many instances–almost always in Las Vegas–where I was overwhelmed by the number of buffet choices and left the meal worrying I hadn’t sampled everything I might have liked.

OK, where am I going with this? Well, the number of places from which one can buy a car and the different types of car-buying experiences are making a selection of a Grocery Car/Taxi/Corvette Companion more difficult. The fact that I/we are torn between buying something somewhat practical or something more romantic, for lack of a better word, may be an internal factor, but the fact that it is almost too easy to find and to buy a car is a major complication.

I also think that ex post facto rationalization comes into play. To wit:

 

See the source image

 

From CNET a picture of the now-discontinued Buick Cascada. This car is now on the radar as a potential purchase. In Arizona, a convertible is a plus, the car is not ugly–at least not in our opinion–it has four seats and a decent-sized trunk. It’s not a performance car, I think its less than stellar power-to-weight ratio is a reason the car didn’t succeed, but it does have 200 HP/207 LB-FT of torque.

Last night when my wonderful wife and I were talking about this car, I was already “inventing” reasons why it would be a good purchase. The car was manufactured in Poland where my parents were born. The first car I ever drove was a Buick; neither my wonderful wife nor I has ever owned a Buick. All of this because a few examples of this car popped up on a general car search on AutoTrader.

What do you think about The Paradox Of Choice? I see similarities in the quest for choice and the rebellion against tyranny, both of which have probably gone too far in the opposite direction from the “original” state of affairs.

 

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Monday Musings 59

 

Note the notification on top that I received yesterday. Thanks to everyone who read Disaffected Musings and please keep reading.

The first time I received the word that my “stats are booming” was the day that Bill James tweeted the main link to the blog in April, 2019. Yesterday’s notification was only the third or fourth time I have received that news in the nearly three years this blog has existed. Oh, Bill…please feel free to tweet the main link to the blog or to any specific post anytime you want. 🙂

Thanks again.

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Although most search terms are hidden I suspect that, once again, much of yesterday’s traffic was the result of people searching for Cristy Lee news. Oh, it’s Cristy and not Christy.

While I don’t want this blog to be a one-stop shop for Cristy Lee news, she is fairly active on “social media” and you can follow her there, I am grateful for any new readers and hope that they will read the blog even given she is not mentioned the vast majority of the time.

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Although I have shown pictures of my Corvettes here, I don’t think I’ve shown all three in the same post…until now:

 

 

The top photo is of my current Vette, a 2016 Z06 that I purchased (with the help of my wonderful wife) in March, 2019. I have driven it a little over 4,000 miles in the 20-ish months I have owned it.

The middle photo is my 2007 Vette, the only one of the three that I purchased new. I bought the car in February, 2007 and sold it in October, 2010 when I lost my business and thought I needed to raise cash. I think I drove the car about 14,000 miles in the roughly 44 months I owned it.

The bottom photo is my 2002 Corvette that I bought in March, 2004. I nearly died in February, 2004 and that experience, along with the death of my mother in January, pushed me into buying the car as I have had much interest in Corvettes for a long time. I decided to buy a used one because if I didn’t really like driving the car then I wouldn’t have paid the price for a new one and suffered the depreciation. Obviously, I really liked driving a Corvette as I traded it in on a new one after driving the ’02 approximately 12,000 miles in 35 months.

Doing the math: I have driven these cars about 30,000 miles in 99 months of ownership. That’s not exactly a lot of driving and I do feel as though I have missed out on some of the potential enjoyment of these cars. I suspect I will drive my Z06 more in the desert than I did in the mid-Atlantic, but the car will never remotely approach 1,000 miles a month.

Long live the Corvette!

 

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16 Tacos

Originally I was going to title today’s post “40 Days and 40 Nights” because, counting today, that’s how much is left of the year 2020. I decided that was too much “on the nose.”

My wonderful wife and I have been in Arizona for about three weeks. In that time I have eaten 16 tacos from Jack In The Box. If any of them are reading I can imagine the reaction of the food fascists, “Ew, those aren’t real tacos. How can you eat that stuff?” Uh, being smug, self-righteous and arrogant is no way to go through life. (Yes, an Animal House reference, sort of.)

I love Jack In The Box tacos. The only concession I’ve made to age is that I order them without the sauce. From the time we left Texas almost 13 years ago until our move here my access to Jack In The Box had been extremely limited. I am making up for lost time.

I doubt I will continue to average almost a taco a day, but I will have them whenever I want. From a site called Serious Eats, a picture of those tacos:

 

See the source image

 

I have a long history with Jack In The Box. I have always been an avid reader. When I was young, a Jack In The Box store was next door to the library where I would borrow books and I would usually get whoever drove me to the library to stop there.

Around the time I began college that store closed as did most others in the eastern half of the country. From about 1980 until I moved to California in 1995 I did not eat at Jack In The Box.

When I moved west I remember waiting at least ten days before I went to one, perhaps in an effort to heighten the anticipation. Of course, I ordered tacos, two at first, but I think I ate at least two more. When I pulled the first one out of its envelope I couldn’t believe it. It looked and smelled exactly the same as I had remembered it and when I took my first bite it tasted exactly the same. I was euphoric.

If you don’t like their tacos, then don’t eat them. Don’t you dare tell me what I should or shouldn’t eat. My life doesn’t belong to you. When you can run three 11-minute miles three times a week (despite painful bunions and arthritis in my feet), then maybe you can have a say. Then again, maybe not.

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Not “remembering” the shooting death of John F. Kennedy today is not an effort at demeaning the significance of the incident. I will say, though, that based on the limited amount of reading I have done, my “theory” is that while Lee Harvey Oswald did intend to kill JFK, he was actually killed by a bullet accidentally fired by a Secret Service agent.

This theory is outlined in the book Mortal Error (published in 1992) by Bonar Menninger. The book is based on the work of Howard Donahue, a gunsmith, sharpshooter and ballistics expert. In 2013, Australian journalist and former police detective Colin McLaren published a book and documentary both titled JFK: The Smoking Gun, examining and supporting Donahue’s theory.

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See the source image

See the source image

 

On this day in 1893, legendary automobile stylist Harley Earl was born. The top picture (from Car Type) is the Buick Y-Job, Earl’s creation and the first “concept car.” The bottom photo (from Classic Cars) is, of course, a 1953 Corvette.

On January 1, 1928, Art and Colour, the automobile industry’s first dedicated styling department, was created by General Motors. Harley Earl was named its head and this department was, essentially, created for Earl by Alfred Sloan, President/CEO/Chairman of GM.

After seeing many cars like the Jaguar XK 120 at an event in Watkins Glen, Earl was inspired to create an American two-seat sports car. On June 2, 1952 he gave Chevrolet Chief Engineer Ed Cole (who eventually became President of GM) a sneak preview of an Art and Color mockup of the “secret” two-seat sports car, code named Opel. Cole loved the idea and pushed for permission to put the car into production. With no offense intended to the memory of Zora Arkus-Duntov, Harley Earl was the real father of the Corvette and Ed Cole also deserves much credit for its creation.

 

#16Tacos

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#BuickY-Job

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Serpentine Saturday

Should I be worried that the manufacturer of one of my prescriptions is on an FDA recall list for the same drug, but in a different dose? Our new pharmacy filled our prescriptions for the first time and one of the meds I take has been in the news over a recall for high levels of NDMA, which is supposed to be a cancer-causing agent in people. Our new pharmacy dispenses the drug, a generic, from a different manufacturer than our previous pharmacy.

In 2018, this drug was the third most-prescribed in the US with an estimated 83.8 million prescriptions. Some people have 12 scripts per year and others only have 4 so the actual number of people on the drug is not easy to estimate, but obviously it’s in the millions.

We really are at the mercy of many people and companies who are unknown to us. How many of you have heard of Apotex Pharmaceuticals, the company at the center of this recall? (They are not the manufacturer of my prescription.) How many of you check the name of the manufacturer of your prescriptions?

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From this Corvette Blogger piece comes the news that a lawsuit against General Motors over cracked wheels on C7 Corvette Z06s and Grand Sports has been dismissed. Of course, I own a C7 Z06.

Since becoming aware of this lawsuit I have been extra careful in trying to avoid manhole covers, of which there seem to be many in Arizona, and in slowing down while crossing over railroad tracks. Of course, the wheels of my Z06 are the one design feature of which I am not completely enamored. I really like the split five-spoke design of my wonderful wife’s 2018 Z51 convertible:

 

 

I don’t want to have to spend the thousands of dollars it would take to replace my wheels, at least not now, but if my wheels were to crack I would probably not replace them with factory wheels, anyway. In case you need to refresh your memory:

 

 

I don’t dislike those wheels, but I prefer a simpler design. You know, less is more.

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Here is a picture I took just a couple of minutes ago. It would be better if it weren’t for the fact that I took it on the “wrong” side of the screen of my office window:

 

 

On one level, the distortion caused by the screen adds an interesting perspective. On another level, what I just wrote is full of sh*t. It is interesting to me that for the camera the screen is more prominent than it was for me.

 

#SerpentineSaturday

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#DesertSunrise

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Frugal Friday, Cheapest Car I Would Buy Edition

First…

 

 

I warned you that I was going to show a lot of pictures of the scenery around here.

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Even though I found both of our Corvettes using Car Gurus, for the type of search I wanted to do today I used AutoTrader. The latter is better at searches by multiple types of cars.

I did a nationwide search of vehicles with a max price of $10,000 and no more than 75,000 miles. The cars had to have an 8-cylinder engine, an automatic transmission, and be a convertible or coupe. Oh, the cars also could not have ever had a reported accident.

It will be absolutely no surprise to regular readers of Disaffected Musings which car I picked. This picture is from Barrett-Jackson as picture links to AutoTrader have a way of breaking quickly.

 

See the source image

 

This is a 1993 Cadillac Allanté. The one available on AutoTrader, also in Red, has 53,499 miles and the asking price is $7,990. AutoTrader classifies that as a “Great Price.”

This was the fifth least expensive of the 19 results in the search. The four that were less expensive were also Cadillacs, either Eldorados or Allantés, but were of model years I wouldn’t buy.

IF the car fit our needs (it doesn’t) or IF I had space for a fourth car (I don’t), I would have already contacted the dealer about this car. If my aunt had had balls, she would have been my uncle. I first heard that line, which I have been using for more than 40 years, from Tim Whittie. He was a star athlete at my high school, earning 10 varsity letters in football, wrestling and track. (It could have been football, wrestling and lacrosse, but 10 varsity letters is still 10 varsity letters.)

He did play major college football, but was never more than a complementary player at that level. I had a friend, Jim F (we have drifted apart over the years), who was the city defensive player of the year in our senior year. He was not successful at making the jump to college football at the 1-AA level. It’s great to have dreams, but almost everyone should have a fallback position. People like LeBron James are literally one in a million.

OK, back to the car…as every edition of Frugal Friday shows, an enjoyable car can be purchased for not a lot of money. I believe it was Keynes who said that the desired end result of all economic activity is consumption. In other words, one acquires wealth with the idea it will or could be spent, even if that spending is in the future.

 

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Throwback Thursday, Gettysburg Address Edition

On this day in 1863, as part of the dedication ceremony for the Soldiers’ National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, President Abraham Lincoln gave what became one of the most famous speeches in American history. Here it is:

 

Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.

Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate—we can not consecrate—we can not hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

 

Sadly, I think the US has strayed very far from Lincoln’s vision. Obviously, I am not the only person who has that view. We have become a nation governed by an unholy alliance of special interest groups and government bureaucrats; the former consumed by naked self-interest, the latter consumed by ideology and a need for power.

I think we are engaged in a Cold Civil War, a war of vastly differing visions for this country, but a war without bullets (mostly). Once again, I think the end result will be the dissolution of the US as we know it as the attempted departure of any state(s) from the union will be welcomed by those in states where the majority of its citizens hold different views.

Nothing lasts forever including nations. Where is Czechoslovakia? Where is Yugoslavia? Going back further in time, where is the Roman Empire? Where is the Austro-Hungarian Empire? (Speaking of Hungary, could anyone have imagined 50 years ago that it would be a NATO member before the end of the 20th century?)

Government is only supposed to exist with the consent of the governed (of the people, by the people, for the people). It is not supposed to be a monolithic, unaccountable entity. However, views on the role of government have become so polarized that I see no resolution other than dissolution.

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A more pleasant throwback and not an effort to demean the Gettysburg Address or Abraham Lincoln:

 

See the source image

 

This is a picture (from Motor Authority) of the Pontiac Banshee I concept car, unveiled in 1964, and not a C3 Corvette prototype.

From this article in Corv Sport titled “The Pontiac Banshee: The Most Influential Car That Never Was:”

 

However, in the case of the Pontiac Banshee, a design can fail to receive final approval, due solely to the fact that the car in question would likely become a threat to the sales of a brand’s flagship offering. This is a lesson that John DeLorean, much to his disgust, was forced to come to terms with.

During this same period [the mid-1960s], the GTO, originally offered as an options package for the Pontiac LeMans, had begun to garner a following of its own. However, one of the project’s chief designers, John DeLorean, was not yet content with Pontiac’s footprint in the performance/sports car sector. Instead, he set out to engineer something revolutionary by design, that would yield performance and driveability characteristics of sufficient fortitude to topple the Mustang’s elite status.

It was out of this desire that the XP-883 concept car was born. This particular car was known by the Pontiac design team staff as the Banshee. Ultimately, two original Banshee concept cars were built. Out of these two, one was a soft-topped roadster, and the other featured a removable hardtop.

The Banshee featured sleek body lines, a 90-inch wheelbase, and weighed in at only 2,615 pounds. The car also boasted a 421 H.O. engine that was mated to a Muncie M-21 four-speed transmission. It appeared that there was a bright future ahead for the Banshee, if only it reached production. Unfortunately, it never did.

When DeLorean set out to secure the approval that was needed to send the Banshee into full-fledged production, his requests were met with steadfast rejection. Although the Banshee was poised for potential greatness, there was indeed a stumbling block in DeLorean’s path.

The Banshee, with its comparable horsepower to the Corvette of the day, and its notably lighter curb weight, was seen as a direct threat to the American icon’s elite status. Because of this, rejection was levied against DeLorean’s ambitions for the Banshee. It seemed as if GM executives had taken a hardline stance against the Banshee, for no other reason than the fact that they felt it would become formidable opposition to the Corvette, in both the performance and sales arena.

Even with a revised presentation of an inline 6-cylinder option that yielded a reported output of 165 HP, the Banshee failed to secure the number of signatures required to send it to production. Instead, DeLorean was told to cease all work on the current project and proceed to design duties on a Pontiac branded version of the Camaro, which would ultimately become the Firebird.

However, the story of the Banshee was far from over. On September 10, 1965, a memo was passed down to Bill Mitchell, GM’s Head of Design, that featured a request to modify the Banshee’s clays into a more Chevrolet-esque two-passenger coupe design.

When the C3 Corvette debuted in 1968, it held a striking resemblance to the Banshee that had previously been barred from production. In an ironic turn of events, it seemed as if the Banshee had become the latest inception of the very car that it had been forbidden to stack up against.

 

If you can’t beat ’em, be ’em. As every regular reader knows, I am quite the fan of concept cars and wish more of them could be put into production more or less untouched.

 

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A Or B 2

First…from here comes the “news” that the FDA has asked a group of advisors to set aside December 8-10 to participate in meetings to discuss COVID vaccines. The meetings would be a key step in the agency’s emergency authorization process. If emergency use is approved next month that would represent the fastest vaccine development in history, by far. Maybe I’m out of my lane, but I think the ability to sequence the virus genome must have played a role in the speed of development AND will continue to revolutionize future vaccine research.

Second…from here comes the news that the FAA has cleared the Boeing 737 Max to fly after the planes were grounded for 20 months. Boeing has made the automated flight control system “less aggressive” and added more redundancies.

Yes, I rely on CNBC for my news. I don’t trust CNN and I don’t trust Fox News. I know I’m in the minority among Americans who seek news.

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OK, after a long hiatus A Or B returns. Use whatever criteria you want to choose between these two cars that, in this case, have a lot in common.

 

See the source image

See the source image

 

The top picture of a 1935 Auburn Speedster 851 is from Mecum and the bottom picture of a 1937 Cord 812 is from Top Speed. Obviously, I chose photos that showed the most famous views of the cars.

Both cars represent the agony and the ecstasy of the Cord Corporation. Both exteriors were designed by the legendary Gordon Buehrig.

Do you care about specs? To me, these cars are more rolling sculpture than engineering marvels and, besides, cars from the 1930s cannot compare in any way to modern cars in terms of performance and reliability. OK…the highest output Auburn engine for 1935 was a 280 cubic-inch, supercharged inline-8, made by aircraft company Lycoming, that produced 150 HP, but probably had more torque than 150 LB-FT given its old-fashioned undersquare (bore < stroke) layout. The ’37 Cord had a 289 cubic-inch V-8 made by Lycoming, which in its highest supercharged spec made 190 HP.

From what is my most valuable book, Encyclopedia of American Cars by the Auto Editors of Consumer Guide®, comes this passage:

 

“Perhaps to avoid a brewing scandal over his management of these enterprises [Duesenberg, Cord, Lycoming, Ansted Engines, etc.], Cord fled to England in 1934 and promptly dropped from sight…Like a prodigal son, E.L. Cord returned from England in 1936 to salvage his crumbling empire, only to find the IRS and the Securities and Exchange Commission ready to launch major investigations of his doings.”

 

Cord’s automotive empire collapsed shortly thereafter and he sold what was left of his corporation in 1937. Of course, he later made millions in real estate and in uranium mines. He also became a US Senator from Nevada, which is where he moved after he sold his company.

I think Elon Musk represents the spirit of people like E.L. Cord and Preston Tucker. Of course, the automobile business is one that requires huge capital investment to succeed in any meaningful way. The sheer size has taken some of the romance away.

OK…1935 Auburn 851 Speedster or 1937 Cord 812? Please let me know which car you prefer and, if you are so inclined, why. Thanks.

 

#AOrB

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#1937Cord812

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Time To Call An Audible

In case you don’t know, or even if you do, in the context of football an audible (as opposed to audible, as in able to be heard) is a verbal instruction to change the play that was called in the huddle. The change can be minor or major.

After guessing about the size of our “three-car” garage here, I decided to measure it yesterday. More specifically, I measured the part of the garage adjacent to the single-car door.

Yes, the garage is about 28 feet wide in total, about 2 feet shorter than what should be the minimum for a three-car garage. The single-car part of the garage, though, is only about 17 feet, or 204 inches, from the garage door to the bump-out for the guest bedroom closet. (The double-car part of the garage is almost 18 feet long in usable space.)

OK, do you think it’s prudent to try to park a 200-inch long car, like a 2000-2002 Cadillac Eldorado, in a 204-inch space? That car can’t be parked diagonally because of the insufficient width of the garage. Yes, I wish I had measured the garage while looking at the house before purchase. It’s not that I could have changed anything, but at least I would have gone into this exercise with my eyes open.

So, all of a sudden the Eldorado has become an impractical choice. If we had 18 feet in length instead of 17, then that would not be the case. The last-generation Chevrolet Monte Carlo is not much shorter at 198 inches and my wonderful wife and I don’t really want a three-Chevrolet garage.

I admit I am disappointed at this turn of events. This search for another car that began by looking at “classics” from the early 1960s has now morphed into something far less romantic.

I also must admit that this is when I wish a comprehensive online automobile database existed where I could search for cars based on criteria like length. I guess such a database has no commercial use so it doesn’t exist, at least not to my knowledge.

OK, now what do I do? Well, at least the short length has, in essence, ruled out cars with four doors, but that also means a Maserati Quattroporte (currently 207 inches in length; the first generation of the revival was 199 inches) is out. Even the Ghibli is too long at 196 inches and examples without high mileage are out of our desired price range.

What do you think of this?

 

See the source image

 

From GM Authority a picture of a 2015 Cadillac ATS coupe. At its introduction in 2012 (as a 2013 model year car), the ATS was named “Car of the Year” by Esquire, “Luxury Car of the Year” by Popular Mechanics and “Vehicle of the Year” by the Motor Press Guild. In 2013, a panel of 49 automobile journalists from the US and Canada named the 2013 ATS as “North American Car of the Year.” I grant that some automobile enthusiasts would call that last award as damning the car with faint praise.

The coupe is just 184 inches in length (the sedan would probably fit at 189 inches, but I need some semblance of romance left) so it would fit even in a 17-foot space. OK, why not a CTS coupe? I’m sorry, but the shape is just too odd for my tastes.

Using Car Gurus as a first source, 17 ATS coupes met the criteria for mileage (<= 50,000 miles) and color. (No cars with black or white exteriors and no cars with black interiors; this is the desert with about 300 sunny days per year.)

Only one had a list price under $20,000 ($19,995), but four others were listed at or below $21,500 and Car Gurus identified one of them as a “Good Deal.” The others were only described as “Fair Deals.”

This price range is above our target ($15,000-ish) so I may have to keep looking. Pushing the maximum mileage to 75,000 does not reveal any cars at that price.

OK, kind people, I am asking for your help. What two-door car with good looks and decent performance, with more than two seats and a trunk at least 12 cubic feet in volume, no older than the 2000 model year and no longer than 185 inches can we buy for no more than $15,000-$16,000?

I hope to hear from you. Thanks.

 

#TimeToCallAnAudible

#CadillacATSCoupe

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House M.D.

On this day in 2004 the first episode of House M.D. aired. The show, better known simply as House, is my favorite show ever. By the way, that it has been 16 years since the premiere of the show and that House has now been out of production longer than it was in production are two incomprehensible realities for me.

I have always liked medical shows. I have watched shows like Untold Stories of the ER and Mystery Diagnosis. The only two shows from the “Big Four” networks I currently watch are The Good Doctor and Transplant, although the latter is actually a Canadian import aired on NBC to fill its lack of new programming due to the damn virus.

House was simply brilliant, a combination of great writing and performing, interesting cases, humor and drama. I can’t do the show justice by trying to summarize various episodes or by writing great lines of dialogue. In case you don’t know, or even if you do, House was about Dr. Gregory House, brilliantly portrayed by Hugh Laurie, a Vicodin-addicted misanthropic doctor who leads a team of physicians in trying to diagnose cases no one else can solve. House would often violate the “rules” of medicine in order to get a diagnosis.

After we moved, my wonderful wife and I cut the TV cord. We now subscribe to Hulu and have long had an Amazon Prime subscription. Hulu’s Live TV option, the one we have, includes the POP channel, which airs a House marathon every weekday. Amazon Prime also has every episode available. I’m good to go. Oh, I also have every episode on DVD, not that we’ve been able to find our Blu-Ray player. I don’t watch every House episode every day on POP or binge-watch episodes on Amazon Prime, but I probably watch 2-4 episodes a week.

I salute the producers, writers, cast and crew of House. Although I doubt any of them will ever read this, my heartfelt thanks for producing such a great show.

From Wallpaper Cave:

 

House M.D. Wallpapers by Azzurri107

 

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OK, apparently I published a very similar post on this day last year. As Disaffected Musings nears 1,000 posts I simply can’t remember everything I’ve written.

 

929

 

 

Patting Myself On The Back and Getting Angry

This revelation will not make me seem very modest…if it’s a battle between modesty and honesty, honesty wins every time for me.

 

In the last two weeks before we moved, two friends and now former neighbors told me the same thing: that I was among the most intelligent people they have ever known, if not the most intelligent. Dr. S (a Ph.D. in Statistics) and Jack (a bright former Dupont engineer) are those friends. Granted, my imminent departure may have made them more effusive in their praise given the “emotion” of the moment, but they said what they said.

Earlier this year I sent my resume to my good friend Bob. His response was simply, “Unbelievable resume.”

OK, people…how is it that someone with my supposed intelligence and “unbelievable” resume cannot find an interesting and fulfilling work situation? The answer is that AMERICA IS BROKEN! This country, and maybe the entire world for all I know, is awash in hyper-credentialism, political correctness and age discrimination. By the way, credentials are not necessarily just college degree and experience, but also being part of the “right” groups.

I really want to find a part-time or consulting “job” that would enable me to use my combination of skills and experience, but only in a field in which I have a high level of intrinsic interest. I had no success in many years of searching so, frankly, at the moment I am not looking. One of the reasons I wanted to make this move to the desert is the hope that maybe, just maybe, the change in venue could lead to success in finding what I want. After we get more settled in, perhaps in another week, I will begin a search in earnest although I know this damn virus will complicate things.

I don’t really expect to have success in my search and that makes me very angry. I will once again rail against those who think that everyone gets what they deserve. That is sheer, unadulterated bullsh*t!

I’ve had my say and I do not expect things to change, but I will try at least for awhile, anyway.

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I don’t think I took this picture, but it’s worth showing:

 

 

Here is a picture I did take along the same theme:

 

 

I asked for your indulgence here because I will be posting pictures of the scenery quite a bit. I find it breathtaking and not in a Seinfeld kind of way.

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OK, some of you might be thinking, “When is he going to buy the Corvette Companion/Grocery Car/Taxi?” Well, that might be awhile.

First, this move has been way more expensive than we anticipated given the cost of extensive repairs needed to fix our “old” house before selling it, the extortionary amount we paid to the moving company and the amount we have had to put into repairs made to our “new” house/the amount we still have to spend on making this house more livable.

Second, our garage may technically be a 3-car garage, but it’s not, really. I would guess that it’s only 28 feet by 18-19 feet and not the minimum 30′ x 20′ that a 3-car garage should be. Do the math: 28 feet by 18 1/2 feet is 518 square feet; 30 feet by 20 feet is 600 square feet. If you don’t think 82 square feet is a significant difference in a garage, then maybe you’ve never had a garage.

I think I/we will still buy another car, but it will have to wait until the new year and it might have to be parked outside under a cover. The only advantage to this garage is that because it has two doors there is space to park something on the driveway that will not be in the way of the two Corvettes getting in and out.

Yes, one of these is still the favorite:

 

See the source image

 

From usedregina.com (I assume a classified site for the Regina, Saskatchewan area, I didn’t look) a picture of a 2002 Cadillac Eldorado in ETC spec. In this car-crazy part of the country, we have already seen a couple of these while driving around.

I just think that these check all of the boxes: they look good, they’re not slugs, they have more than two seats and a trunk, they’re not expensive to acquire and buying one will be a homage to a storied model with a long and glorious history. If anyone has any other suggestions, I’m all eyes. As I have written before, I can’t be all ears because I can’t hear you.

Stay safe and be well.

 

#PattingMyselfOnTheBackandGettingAngry

#AmericaIsBroken!

#DesertBeauty

#GroceryCar/Taxi/CorvetteCompanion

#somanycarsjustonelife

#disaffectedmusings

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