Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Don't Judge Me



Back in December, I had a string of bad and ironic luck. I fell victim to bank card fraud thanks to shopping at Target and because my savings account was my overdraft protection account, when the person wiped out my checking account of every penny, they got my savings as well, leaving me penniless. Because of this, I could not get gas in my car and was now driving around with the gas light on. After taking care of canceling my card and getting a temporary one from the bank, my husband transferred funds over so I could get gas. I had gone home first to drop off my son and parents and on my way backing out of the driveway to get gas, my car got hit.

After a frustrating couple of weeks, I was convinced 2014 was going to be horrible, but much to my surprise, the Karma Police saw to it that wouldn’t happen. The account got situated, my car got fixed, and I had been nominated for a distinguished award at work, a PEER award. The city gives these awards out four times a year and there’s some pretty cool perks that come with it. Quite possibly the best, though, was getting an official proclamation from Mayor Teresa Tomlinson during council. Oh, and there is also a monetary bonus that comes with this, and honestly, this couldn’t have happened at a better time!


As the weekend is approaching, I have bought about $100 worth of supplies for body work repairs and I’m now on the hunt for painting equipment. While I have found what sound like decent set ups, I have yet to find an adequate and affordable air compressor, or at least anything that has a good review that comes close to my needs. I emailed Elana Scherr for more details on How To Paint Your Car In A Weekend, particularly regarding the type of air compressor that was used. I know there was mentioning of the gun and those seem pretty easy to come by.  Most of the compressors I have found are a little more than what I’m willing to pay, especially if the reviews all say they’re great for filling up tires. Is that all people do with these things? Fill up tires? I need something on painting or pneumatic tools!

I started to toy with the idea of renting equipment. Really, I don’t see myself using a paint gun again after the car is painted, so I might as well just rent it, right? Google was not very good at helping me find equipment rentals. I called a large chain auto parts retailer (who shall not be named) as they had tool rentals and I asked. The guy on the phone wasn’t sure and had to check.

“No, ma’am, we don’t rent them, sorry,” he said.

“Thanks,” I replied.

Just before I had a chance to hang up, he said, “They said you’d be better off taking the car in somewhere to have it painted.”

I caught him off guard when I responded, “Well, that would just take all the fun out of it!”

He just laughed, “Um, alright…???”

I was patronized in a spit second and the concept that I could possibly paint a car suddenly became nothing more than a source of amusement. To be honest, instead of reacting like a raging feminist and arguing with the stranger on the other end of the line, I felt ambitious. I became overwhelmed by a sense of I’ll show you! Honestly, yes, I can take the car in to be painted. I’m sure I could get a very nice paint job for around $500, give or take. But I can’t get the feeling of pride of displaying my work and knowing whenever I see my car that I can say, “I did that!” Even if it is mediocre or sub-par, I can still say, “I did that!”

Anyone can drive a car. A lot of people even do work on their car. But not many people are ballsy enough to take on painting because deep down, we all judge by how things look on the outside still. It is almost sacrilegious to have a beefy restored car with a mediocre paint job, unless, of course it’s the one that the car came with and it has yet to get a new paint job, then that’s different.  Admit it or not, we all judge physical appearances and make excuses for when it’s acceptable for something to be ugly and when it’s not. We do it with people and we do it with cars. Cars, like people, can be beautiful and awesome inside even if they aren’t perfect outside. Philosophical moment aside, my car doesn’t have to be beautiful for me to love it. My car will essentially be a part of me: a reflection of my character; born of stubborn determination, far from perfect but awesome none the less. I will love my car regardless of how he looks or how he runs simply because he is mine.

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