Saturday, May 25, 2013

The Best Vehicle I've Ever Owned

Me in front of the Family Life Resource Center where I work
I just got a copy of a new book by Howard Zehr, "Pickups, A Love Story: Pickup Trucks, Their Owners, Their Stories"  featuring pictures and sketches of over 60 pickup owners, including me and the little "hickup" I've enjoyed for the past seven years. 

I frequently thank my good friend Guy Vlasits for making available one of the best and most trouble-free vehicles I've ever owned.

The narrative that follows, which makes up chapter 14 of the book, is based on recordings of interviews Zehr did with me last year for his book.

"It's more of a Charlie Brown kind of thing"

This is a ‘97 Nissan pickup. One of our good friends wanted to sell it, so he let us have it for a very reasonable price. He had taken care of it so well, and of course I try to do the same.

I don’t know what I would do without a pickup. It is so handy, so practical and useful. We just have a half-acre lot, but we burn wood. I have my own chain saw and cut our own wood. It’s good exercise, and I enjoy it a lot. And I like to garden. So when I need to haul mulch, some horse manure from my neighbor, or something like that, it is just so nice to have a pickup. And I use it to go back and forth from work.

It fits in with my pragmatic nature. I’m big on getting exercise. I’d much rather do exercise that’s useful, and the same way with this. It’s fun to have the pickup, but you get to do a lot of useful things with it. Plus I enjoy loaning it to my friends. There were years when I had to borrow a pickup every now and then for something. So I just enjoy being on the other side of that and letting other people use it.

These days, people—men especially—like these huge, massive V8s that make this truck look like a pygmy. So it’s not a prestige vehicle, for sure. I love it anyway. It’s certainly not like the mid-life sports car that’s going to make me look bigger, younger, whatever. It’s more of a Charlie Brown kind of thing.

(copyright Good Books, 2013)
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