41 things I love about my car

I was going to do this as a pictorial essay but I kept thinking that even attempting to do this was the height of self indulgent schlock; pictures would just be even more self indulgent.

  1. She is uniquely and spectacularly purple;
  2. She has a functioning sunroof;
  3. Those two attributes alone are why I purchased her;
  4. The little meeping noise she makes when I leave the sound system in the car (my response being, “yeah, baby, I know” and to then remove and lock it up, this being Vancouver);
  5. The bonging noise she makes when I leave the lights on or the door ajar;
  6. Her incredible throaty purr as I depress the accelerator in fourth gear going up Burnaby Mountain as I go to work in the morning;
  7. The delightful difference that a small amount of maintenance can make in her attitude, viz, what happens when I spend 39 dollars on her for micro blade windshield washers and driving at night instantly stops being scary;
  8. The fact that, despite the fact that she’s a Ford, she is in fact a sportscar, and sportscars are part of family traditions and lore;
  9. The fact that, despite the fact that she’s not a convertible, she can be skyclad and I can get wind in my hair, and that too is part of family tradition and lore;
  10. Ziva’s capacious trunk;
  11. Her ability to haul two in comfort, if they don’t mind the ungainly exit, and five in a pinch, which also describes the status of the rear passengers;
  12. The layout of the dashboard, which combines simplicity and functionality;
  13. Her tachometer.  You see, that’s how I know she’s a sportscar.  And I use it, along with the engine sound.
  14. The sound system, a Pioneer deck;
  15. The subwoofer, now alas in for repairs;
  16. The fact that I have the shop manual;
  17. The fact that I have the original owner’s manual;
  18. The fact that I knew it was going to cost a lot more than the previous owner thought it would to get her running, and cognitively moved myself along the irritation of that knowledge to knowing that one day I would merely love her more for the pains she cost me;
  19. The fact that she has had the courtesy to take to her bed, on those occasions when her ability to move abruptly ceased, somewhere like the highway as opposed to on the ferry;
  20. The way her behaviour seems very human sometimes;
  21. The simply amazing way she cleans up;
  22. The way she reflects how I feel about myself these days – beat up, long out of warranty, expensive to maintain, gassy – in her various flaws, viz, the missing rocker panel and the bent antenna;
  23. The way her model name is outlined in purple;
  24. How there were only two hundred like her ever made (I have a history of loving rare cars, like the Marlin).
  25. How if I want to ever sell her, I can pretty much get back what I’ve spent on her (and I know it would break my heart, but I’m thinking I may sell her when the company moves in March because my bus commute will instantly become more humane);
  26. How adjustable the driver’s seat is;
  27. The way the interior lights slowly fade after somebody gets into or out of the car;
  28. The pattern of the material on the seats;
  29. How fast I’ve learned to get the sunroof open without taking my eyes off the road;
  30. Rear wiper! I had no idea how much I would love having a rear wiper;
  31. How I’m so unused to having a rear wiper that I neglected to buy a replacement when I replaced the front ones (and I’d like to thank Paul and the guy from Lordco for helping with that, in the rain, even);
  32. The blinding speed with which Ziva goes from shoving cold air out her vents to boiling hot gusts of air that make me feel I could drive anywhere in the winter and stay warm;
  33. The equally blinding speed with which she deals with interior condensation – after decades of anemic heaters in various cars it’s like a revelation;
  34. The little dangly sparkly purple skull I hung from the passenger sun visor, which reminds me not to drive like an idiot so I don’t end up like a skullington myself;
  35. The way the check engine light comes on at precisely the same point every day on my commute and goes off just before I get to work, like clockwork, and how this is entirely normal behaviour in her and her sister Probes of like vintage, and that I should only start worrying if this changes, and how it kinda reminds me of me;
  36. The way she entirely hauls ass when I need her to merge with traffic or scooch into a vacancy in a lane;
  37. The visibility!  With fish eye mirrors and proper window coverage I feel like I can see what the hell I’m doing and react appropriately to the solipsistic mixed martial arts amateur night construction plagued gong show that is driving in Vancouver;
  38. How stiffly sprung she is.  I could wish she took speed bumps better, but that’s okay, I’m supposed to slow down anyway;
  39. How the fuel light comes on long before it’s really an issue;
  40. How she makes me feel on a warm summer day, tunes blaring;
  41. How she makes me feel, period.  That loving, obsessive combination of indulgence and pride and worry and irritation that is car ownership, and how it traces directly back to my ancestors and how they felt about their horses.