Thing about my car: it’s gross. I drive a 1997 Chevy Lumina. Maroon inside, maroon outside. Sometimes, on my bad days, I liken it to driving around in a huge maxipad. There are rust spots on the hood that I don’t feel like buffing out (because, um, I’m not the type of person who “buffs out” anything, or even knows how that’s done) and small dents everywhere. The dents from hail damage were there when I bought the car. The dent on the passenger’s side door got there during a windstorm, when I was cowering inside my car in the Best Buy parking lot and a road sign flew through the air and broadsided me. I was on the phone with my boyfriend at the time, a very sweet guy, who was telling me that he’d feel a lot better if I just went indoors.
“I’m fine,” I said. “I’ll just sit out – OH MY GOD!”
“WHAT?!” he screamed. “WHAT HAPPENED?! ARE YOU ALIVE?”
“I can’t spend all day talking to you, I gotta go inside!”
The dent on the front of my hood is from an accident I was in a couple of years ago. Some Wash U kid turned against my light because she didn’t see me coming. Total accident, not her fault except in the most obvious way. Her back axle was completely destroyed and my airbags blew. When her insurance company totalled out my car, I used the money to rebuild the airbag columns and replace the shattered windshield. I could have fixed the dent in the hood, but I decided to buy a dishwasher, instead. Best ill-gotten $500 I ever spent.
Although my car has been filthier before, right now it’s not so bad. There are some empty gas station beverage cups in the backseat and probably a couple of tattered RFTs back there, but other than that, it’s clean. Aside from the grime that accumulates over 12 years of existence with the kind of people who drive Luminas, I mean.
Oh, and I have a bumper sticker. It says “Dear Republicans, I’m getting really sick of your shit.” Ha ha. I used to have a car plastered in bumper stickers and I never got as many compliments as I have with my current one.
So the other day, I’m at work, sitting at my desk when my friend Brennan walks in. He sits at his desk.
“Say Erin,” he begins, “do you have a bumper sticker?”
“And do you have QuikTrip cups in your car?”
“You mean do I have garbage in my car?”
“Heeeeee, if you feel that’s more appropriate.”
“I do. And yes.”
“Did you know that you’re parked next to a BMW?”
“Hahahaha, yes, I noticed that this morning. Suck it, rich guy.”
I then told Brennan that I was looking out the window at the parking lot the other day, and it appears as though I have the oldest car of anyone who works in our entire building. It doesn’t bug me or anything; actually, it’s kind of a point of pride. I don’t need your bourgeoise BMW, asshole. I get regular oil changes and used tires. My car runs.
Later, Brennan came back from eating lunch and sat down at his desk.
“I looked at the parking lot again,” he said.
“I think you have the crappiest car here.”