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The Autobiography of Russell
Life from a different perspective
Things can get worse; automotive troubles again

Just to prove that things can get worse, they got worse. This morning I was at a light one block away from work when I noticed steam from under my hood. Oh boy, here we go again. I watched the temperature gauge the rest of the way to work and it looked fine. I parked, opened the hood, and noticed the ground was already seeping with green coolant. Lovely, something busted in the cooling system, again.

I've decided it's time to get a new car instead of continually repairing the current one, but my situation doesn't look good. I definitely don't have enough in my emergency savings and my checking is much worse. I just moved so for the month of May I'm actually paying for two places (which reminds me I still need to write my current landlord a letter of intent to vacant, argh).

I wouldn't mind staying with a Toyota Camry, my current make and model, but a 2003 Toyota Camry with 38K miles goes for 14,000.... way out of my price range. The lowest one only goes for 3,000 less, so I'm screwed.

There's a trend going on at work right now of people getting motorcycles. It's a novel idea, but I'm still weary of motorcycles. I don't know the first thing about them and have no idea how they handle. It would be feasible financially, but otherwise it seems questionable. Perhaps not then...

Ugh... I'm hungry too. Stressed, hungry, and getting moody. Bad bad bad.

Current Mood: stressed stressed
Current Music: "Another Way" by Paul Van Dyk

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From: gethenix Date: April 25th, 2008 05:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
:( Sorry to hear this.

zimzat From: zimzat Date: April 26th, 2008 05:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks. :-)

The car has been fixed so it should at least make it around town this weekend and work next week. That will hopefully give me enough time to work on getting a motorcycle license. I'm still weary of them but circumstances compel me to look into other options beyond another car.
leolz From: leolz Date: April 25th, 2008 06:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
This is really shitty, especially since you have been throwing hefty sums of money at charities in recent months. =(
zimzat From: zimzat Date: April 26th, 2008 05:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
It hasn't been that much (250$), and it's only been two charities so far.

Now I'll need to spend the next few months working on getting my emergency savings back up. If I can get a roommate soon-ish then it'll go a lot faster.
sisyphus238 From: sisyphus238 Date: April 26th, 2008 12:19 am (UTC) (Link)
I was going to suggest joining Zipcar but, in checking them out, I see that the service is not available in Las Vegas. They are expanding and who knows.
Here's how convenient they are:
I live at 1514 NE 17th and Weidler in Portland and looky here…
Zipcar : Find Cars : Results - Mozilla Firefox (Build 2008040413)

I'm not a member because I have a car; a car I'm still paying for but which I don't drive much anymore because of the cost of fuel, even though it's a relatively economical car. I take a free light-rail train-ride downtown to work and have been questioning the need for a personal vehicle. I'm still weighing my options, but i think it may be a reasonable answer.

Edited at 2008-04-26 12:32 am (UTC)
zimzat From: zimzat Date: April 26th, 2008 05:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm kind of surprised the cost of fuel bothers people so much. Even back when I was working at Papa Johns it didn't really bother me, but then I also didn't have a house to pay for or any other cost of living bills. Now that I do I also have a job that pays several times what I was getting then. The commute to work is only 11 miles round trip, about half a gallon of gas a day. On an 18 gallon tank I only fill up 15 gallons once every 3 or 4 weeks depending on grocery runs and what-not.

I'm not so sure a Zipcar would be appropriate for going to work. The site says they're best for short-term round trips, and based on the hourly rate that's around 75 to 90$ a day at the hourly rate, or 50$ at the daily rate. That kind of change adds up quickly. On the other hand if you were to take the bus for work and only need it to go grocery shopping once a week for two hours then that might be more feasible (approximately 75$ a month, versus the cost of insurance, gas, and car maintenance around 200$ a month).
sisyphus238 From: sisyphus238 Date: April 26th, 2008 06:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
As I said, I use public transit to get to work so that wouldn't be an issue for me. I use my car now for grocery shopping and getting to and from the gym once a week. I don't use much gas at all anymore. My old job had me putting 10 miles a day on my odometer. Now it's close to 20 miles a week, if that.
I don't know how seriously I'm contemplating selling my car but I spend $241 a month on payments and about $75 a month on insurance and part of me sees a benefit from not having to pay those bills.
zimzat From: zimzat Date: April 26th, 2008 06:21 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hmm... I just looked up the bus routes and it may be possible for me to take the bus, if I want to get up an hour earlier than I already do. I would have to walk 7/10 of a mile to the first stop, and 3/10 of a mile from the drop off to work. It's kind of tempting since I've never used public transit before, and only 40$ for 30 day passes. Then again getting up at 5:30am instead of the 6 or 6:30am I do now is not appealing, at all. On the other hand it would mean I could do something other than driving for the 23 minutes on the bus. Blah. Decisions, decisions. =\
sisyphus238 From: sisyphus238 Date: April 26th, 2008 06:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm extremely fortunate in that I live but an 8 minute walk from the nearest light-rail station which takes me to within 2 blocks of my workplace. I also live in the "Fareless Square" district so using light-rail is free.

While I was unemployed I decided that I'd had quite enough of driving (I'd been a delivery person for the last two jobs - about 12 years of driving in ever increasing traffic) and that I wanted to be able to take light-rail to a job in the city center. So far, so good.
mrtrblmkr1 From: mrtrblmkr1 Date: April 27th, 2008 06:34 am (UTC) (Link)
Have you thought about the motorcycle alternative, the Vespa? They're neat machines, mucho-more comfortable for those weary of a motorcycle's speed and design, and should be a cost saver gas-wise, but I forget the savings vs. a sedan, etc.

Otherwise, why not a modified used Volkswagen?
Diesel vehicles can run on oil if the tank is modified.
Since it's Las Vegas, it should also be similarly easy stopping by a restaurant known for greasy, fried foods looking to dump their oil, you can pick this stuff up for cheap (barter for a barrel-worth for $20, approx. 70mpg or something??) and drive for a long time before having to refill.

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