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Friday, July 23, 2004

Goodbye Corey

I said good bye to Corey today. Last night I gave the little guy one more wash and filled up his belly with a full tank of gas. It was hard to hand over the keys to his new owners, but they looked like nice people, so I think they'll give him a good home.

Corey has been in my family for 10 years now and I've had the pleasure of driving him around for 5 of those years. He's not especially peppy and his modest looks don't turn a lot of heads, but Corey has been reliable and very kind. I admit, there were times when I wished I were driving something with a bit more horsepower, a cd player and air conditioning. But Corey's is to me what Santa's Little Helper is to Bart Simpson: Sure, he's no Lassie, but I just love his goofy looks and gentle demeaner.

Driving Corey to Chinatown to hand him over to his new owners, I thought about the times when I drove him hard to get to Osbourn Gym so I could take  my finals on time. I remembered all the people who have sat in the passenger seat over the years; some of whom I disliked, most of whom I liked and a few special people who I loved. There is so much more to a car than a coat of silver-taupe paint and a 109 horsepower engine. I miss everything about him already: The way I had to row down all four windows and drive really fast to cool him down in the summer; The way I had to floor it down-hill so he would have enough momentum to keep up with traffic on the next uphill climb; The way he (unlike so many of my friends' newer model cars) would be so happy to accept a cassette adaptor so that I could listen to my old iPod while driving to work; And finally, the way his diminuitive engine would pur gently with friendly assurance as he wisked my tired body away from B-lot on many a cold winter's night.

Oh yeah, the last song Corey's radio played for me before I shut off his engine was One Headlight by the Wallflowers. I guessed he still remembered that time my dad and I spent a whole afternoon trying to change one of his lights. Here's to you little buddy. May your trips be short and your oil changes always on time.

Your Favorite Jerk



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