Friday, June 18, 2021

Buyer Beware

 In the news, used car prices are appreciating! (h/t Splendid Isolation)

Maybe, maybe not. Regular readers know I spent many years retailing automobiles and light trucks. One hard lesson learned was, in most sales, there are two customers. The first, and more important, is the lender. The second, and less important, is the mutt driving off the lot with a “happy tag” in the window.

As you sit fuming in the dealership while the sales person scurries back and forth from the “desk”, the reason is seldom trying to find ways to gouge you. Rather, the “desk” is trying to structure a deal that some lender will be stupid enough to buy and thereby finance your purchase. The lender buys the car; you buy it from the lender one month at a time.

Lenders don’t like financing used cars. The default rate on used cars is much higher than new. New cars have factory backed warranties. You can buy a “warranty” on a used car that may, or may not, be worth more than the paper it is written on.

Lenders don’t want to finance anything older than three model years. If you get one financed, it is because of your stellar credit. Poor credit? You are buy here, pay here material.

May I offer you two important “tips”?

Arrange your financing, via a face to face meeting at your credit union, prior to visiting a dealer. Your preconceived ideas may need readjusting. Using a bank instead of a credit union for you day to day financial business? You are foolish, IMO. Hey WSF, fuck you! Yeah, do your own research. With the knowledge of what your credit union will do, you are in a better position to determine if the dealer can get you a better deal.

The second tip is what to look for in buying an extended warrant, aka service contract, etc. Does it cover seals and gaskets? If not, don’t buy it. Gaskets fail far more often than transmissions and engines. I’m talking $1,000 and up to repair that plastic intake manifold (with the very hot gas recalculating return adjacent) gasket. Double that cost for a rear main seal at the back of the engine.

In conclusion, dealers who pay stupid money at the Mannheim Auction doesn’t mean the lender writing a check to the dealer on your behalf agrees with the value of the hoopty.

As always, YMMV

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Jolly Rancher Candies

 LL talks about Jolly Rancher candy, which brought to mind a memory.

The US Army in Afghanistan gave the troops Jolly Rancher hard candies for them to give to civilian children (hearts and minds).

When my son was in Kandahar, I sent him a “CARE” package with items to make his life easier. Along with camper items, I included a wrist rocket. As a teener, he had one and was the terror of our neighborhood.

His buddies found a new use for the wrist rocket. As they traveled in convoys, the local urchins would stand by the roads and throw rocks at them. The gunner in my son’s truck would distribute Jolly Rancher candies to the urchins using the wrist rocket.

When he came home, he left the wrist rocket behind. Perhaps it is still being used to win hearts and minds.\


I've been blogging here for several years and just this month went over 500,000 page views. Some of you do that i a month, or at least a quarter, but I'm humbled that anyone finds my posts entertaining enough to come back. Thank all of you.

Monday, June 14, 2021

All Aboard

 Covid over, the Union Pacific has released a "Big Boy" tour schedule.

I will be somewhere along the tracks getting my steam engine fix.

Sunday, June 13, 2021

They Can't Connect the Dots


Several seniors gathered together in our common room were moaning about soaring prices. When I introduced the theme things were much better under President Trump, several brainwashed Democrats jumped (verbally) on me. Game on!

I held up one example, the price of a 32 oz “Family Size” bag of shredded cheese that last year was $4.99 and last week was $7.99.

“Oh, it isn’t President Biden’s fault; all our problems are caused by COVID!”

Yeah, keep believing that, sheeple.

Most of the residents of this 90 unit senior apartment building are on fixed incomes; their suffering going forward will become acute. Many rely on the Weld County Food Bank now for most of their needs.

Going forward I’m going to avoid these kinds of conversations. Few, if any, minds will be changed (including mine!). Rather, facts will only increase their distress.

My Dad was a proponent of the Belly Flapping Principal. Nothing will change a person’s attitude quicker than a flapping belly (hunger).

Going forward with the (P)regressives calling the shots, I forecast many converts to my Dad’s philosophy.

As always, YMMV

Friday, June 11, 2021

Stirring the Pot

 Swiped from a friend's Facebook page.

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Saving the Environment


Colorado will soon be a safer place! Plastic bags are to be banned. One of the hard working (P)regressive “Karens” has been working to pass this since elected.

No mention of her, and fellow (P)regressives, failure to pass a state budget for two sessions.  That will require them to work with rural conservatives but, hey! they care about all their constituents, just ask them. Just don’t ask their constituents.

The silence from them regarding the millions of non biodegradable snot rags we have been forced to wear, seemingly forever, now being scattered to the four winds is deafening.

Certainly this will result in better weather for everyone.

Currently my area has had the wettest spring in decades while most of Colorado is in a severe drought. Areas that were brown just six weeks ago now have grass 5’ tall. I can’t remember seeing native hay being harvested this early.

I’ve never seen roadsides harvested before.

But have no fear. If we just pay a bit more in taxes, the weather will even out. What if it doesn’t, WSF? We can comfort ourselves with the virtue signaling of trying to do something. Solve vexing problems like homelessness, violent crime and third world roads are too hard. Perhaps we can fool both the public and ourselves with the sound and fury with which we attack trivial issues.

As always, YMMV.

UPDATE - Local

The Miller farm has a large collection of "stuff", airplanes, cars, trucks, construction equipment, farm equipment, etc. People can wander around and the Millers will sell you all manner of food stuff. They are about ten minutes East of I-25 off Exit 243. Well worth the time if you are traveling I-25 IMO.

Monday, June 7, 2021

Beware the Idle Mind

Two of the ladies living in our apartment building enjoy decorating rocks. I find them to be a visual treat; a diversion as Banner takes care of his dog business. 

 Bridal Fashions

As an old fossil, I find these types of bridal gowns distasteful. One wonders just how serious someone is about joining a lifelong partnership wearing such a costume. Assuming the marriage lasts; imagine the reaction of grandchildren to photos in years ahead.

 Below is a photo of a recent bride, ranch raised. She is the granddaughter of a high school classmate. A serious gown for a serious occasion, the good taste displayed will endure in the years ahead, IMO.