Things Baton Rouge drivers do

It’s been a while since I’ve complained about how people in Baton Rouge can’t drive, so it’s time to remedy that.  Here’s a list of things Baton Rouge drivers do that drive me crazy (yep, that’s a driving pun):

  • Slow down to 5 MPH to take a turn when it’s perfectly safe to go at least 3 times that speed, and probably more dangerous to slow down that much.
  • Sit at traffic lights on their phones, thus causing them to take off later when the light turns green, making people behind them to have to sit there longer.
  • Complete and utter inability to either properly adjust mirrors, merge, and/or notice large, brightly colored objects in the lane next to them.
  • “What is a turn signal?”

Seriously guys, it’s very annoying.  Louisiana drivers at the worst.  Don’t believe me?  You probably should.

Nissan, Evey, BRZ

Anyone that reads or has read my blog knows that I love my car. I say “car” because I sold my Nissan 240sx about a month ago, otherwise that would’ve been a plural “cars.” I sold the Nissan because I was putting the money aside to save for a used Scion FR-S to own alongside Evey one day, because the thought of selling Evey makes me sad, and I wanted to get some money for the Nissan while it was worth something. It wasn’t a super easy decision because I loved that little car, but it was a decision that I think was the correct one.

Evey is the car that made me like cars. When I bought her, I didn’t know too much about anything regarding cars; I just really liked the way the 5th gen Camaros looked as soon as I saw the concept, and I knew I had to have one. I didn’t know anything about handling or weight or how to drive a manual.

Buying that Nissan changed all of that. Suddenly I was in a driver’s car that did not apologize for having 155 HP when it was hugging turns. The handling was like nothing I’d ever driven. Going out of the Nissan into Evey made Evey feel like a tank. Every corner I took was and is laborious for the car as it shifts 1,000 extra pounds toward the outside of the turn.

I had never seen Evey as anything other than perfect until I had the Nissan. People told me I’d regret getting the V6 instead of the V8, but I didn’t. I did, however, quickly come to regret paying an extra $1,000 for the automatic transmission. In fact, it’s very possible that if I hadn’t done that, I’d be telling you a different story today.

The last post I made about dream cars included quite a few high-end cars, and there on the end of the list was the Subaru BRZ – a car jointly developed with Toyota (who sells the car as the Scion FR-S here in the states). It is basically the modern day 240sx, and is constantly ranked as one of the best sports cars to enter the market in recent history. Though I had planned on going the more cost efficient route and getting the FR-S used in a year or so, I realized that I really wanted the BRZ, and I knew that at that point, having two new-ish cars was a waste of money (besides just the fact that you have to buy both of the cars: insurance, license fees, upkeep, etc) in my current financial situation (read: not rich), so I realized what I needed to do if I ever wanted the car I really wanted, and that was to sell Evey.

So, it is with a bit of sadness that I will be trading Evey in next week for a Subaru BRZ. That’s of course not to downplay the fact that I’ll be getting a freaking sweet car, but I know that it will be a little bittersweet as I drive off without Evey.

I just needed to write this as I thought about all of the great times I had taking care of Evey, learning about cars, proudly driving her around in late 2009 and 2010 when there were very few 5th gen Camaros around, and proudly driving her around up until now. She’s been great to me, and I hope she’s great to whoever gets the pleasure of owning her next.

Slightly Belated Independence Day Reminder

The 4th of July is typically a celebration of American freedom, but on this July 5th, I’d like to share a tale from a Veteran’s Day celebration in elementary school.

I was in 6th grade, and I was asked to get up in front of the school and say a prayer for freedom. I don’t remember the first few lines, but I’ll never forget the last two because I messed them up. It should’ve gone:

Make us brave and keep us free,
For our country and for thee

But in my nervousness, I managed to change one of the words and said:

Make us brave and make us free,
For our country and for thee

6th grade me was slightly embarrassed at the mistake, but 27 year old me realizes it wasn’t a mistake at all. Here’s to hoping that one day we are free from an oppressive and tyrannical government once again.

A quick rant on personal financial responsibility

It really bothers me when I see people on Facebook posting about some expensive vacation they’re going on when I can recall these same people posting about financial troubles (or I just know they can’t afford it). I mean, do people not have a sense of responsibility anymore? How are you going to barely scrape by, and then suddenly you’re going to Disney World or flying across the country or something?

This is a life pro-tip that everyone would be wise to follow: if you do not have an emergency fund that covers all of your expenses for at least six months (Suze Orman says eight, and I’m sure other advisors will differ), then you have no business spending that kind of money on something as useless as a vacation. It is reckless and irresponsible, especially if you have kids that depend on you. You are not entitled to a vacation. If you can’t afford it, tough shit. Drive to the beach for 5% of the price.

Your credit card should be treated as a one month loan, and unless you are broke and can’t afford food, don’t charge things that you don’t have the money for. I seriously can’t believe that some people operate as if credit cards are just free money.

New Year’s Resolution

I completely forgot to post about this, but I did make a New Year’s Resolution this year – to memorize the full Animaniacs U.S. capitals and nations of the world songs.

I would just like to say that as of about a month and a half ago…mission accomplished. *insert cool guy face here*

Tis the Season

Christmas shopping is so weird.  I like buying things for people and giving them things I think they’ll like or know they want, but shopping for my family is so hard.  Most of them either can’t think of things they want or tell me not to buy them anything, and of course I’m going to buy them something, so that just basically doesn’t help at all.

I’ve got some things wrapped and under the tree, which is good for me.  Usually I don’t wrap anything until Christmas Eve, but I remembered how odd my tree looked last year without any presents under it, so I fixed that pretty quickly this year.  I am feeling more in the spirit of decorating for Christmas than I usually am, so I’ve been on the lookout for Christmasy things.  Yet, it seems like such a waste because it’s only useful for a month, and I still don’t have a single room in my house that is completely decorated, except maybe my bathroom since it doesn’t really need more than the two things that are in it.

Actually, on that note, I’ve been looking at general decorative things a lot more lately.  I am pretty picky about that kind of stuff, so it’s pretty difficult to find just the right thing, and when I do, usually it ends up being expensive because apparently I have expensive tastes or something. *cough* clothes *cough*

Anyway, it would figure that it would get to 80 degrees on December 1st.  I woke up this morning and left to go Christmas shopping, and it felt great outside – 68 degrees and sunny.  Yesterday, it was 40 when I got to work and 70 by lunch.  Pretty cool weather, but it’s my favorite time of year weather-wise.  Winter is too cold, summer is too hot, and spring is pollen-hell (but otherwise decent weather).

And on that note, I hope it snows this year.

Delta vs. American Airlines

Over the past nine weeks, I’ve flown three times: twice with Delta and once with AA.  As I sit here trying to decide which was worse, I’m actually not sure.

On my first Delta flight, the plane needed maintenance that took so long that everyone on the flight missed their connecting flights (unless their final destination was Atlanta).  They promised us a free hotel room at the Atlanta airport, and of course, when we got there, the hotels were full.  In short, Delta promised this to us without checking, and while a person like me was fine (albeit annoyed and frustrated) just sleeping in the airport, I do wonder what happened to the British lady who was traveling with her sister, who had come to America to get surgery on her head.  Certainly she couldn’t sleep in the airport.

Out of that situation, I got a $50 Delta voucher and a $125 Delta voucher, which I later found out could not combined or transferred to others, and also can’t be used on travel sites like Orbitz.  For these vouchers, I had to visit the Delta customer service desk in ATL, and then I later called Delta for the bigger voucher.  They gave me no hassle, but of course they wouldn’t, as they probably give out those nearly worthless vouchers by the thousands every day.

On my second set of Delta flights this past week, everything went great.  No delays, no problems.

On my AA flight a few weeks ago, my flight into Boston was delayed two hours, and my return flight was flat out canceled, and I was automatically put on a flight for the next day.  This meant that I missed a day of work at my new job and had to take a bus to the airport, essentially costing me about $272.  AA doesn’t handle reimbursement requests over the phone, so you have to email them.  I got a response in one day from a guy that offered me a $150 AA voucher.  I told him this was unacceptable and that I needed actual monetary reimbursement.  Of course, despite emailing him back twice, I have yet to hear from him again to this day.  Yesterday, I submitted another reimbursement request to AA.  I’m betting I’ll get nothing out of that.

Honestly, in trying to decide which experience was worse (comparing the one botched Delta flight and the AA one), I have a hard time making up my mind.  On one hand, Delta not checking the hotels near ATL before promising us rooms was really shitty, but AA not having a phone complaint line and not responding to their emails is probably worse.  They did offer me a voucher, which was all I got from Delta, but I feel like Delta tried harder to make me happy, even if they failed at it.  And also, they give out drinks and peanuts/pretzels/cookies on their flights and AA only gives drinks, and I honestly don’t give a crap since I bring my own snack onto the flight, but the thought means something to me.

I will probably be flying Delta again, but I plan to avoid AA unless they make this right.

AAC

So Another Anime Convention is a thing that happened this past weekend.  It was super fun times with Sam and Ed, and I got to meet a bunch of Sam’s friends and have fun with them as well.  We didn’t really do a whole lot of con-related stuff, but of the con stuff we did, the dance was the best part.  It was mostly just fun to hang out and goof off. :D  Booze, corgi pajamas, glowsticks breaking in Ed’s mouth, small pink bicycles…good times.

Had more plane issues (flight into Logan was delayed two hours, and return flight was flat out canceled and postponed until the next day), as per usual.  75% of the trips I’ve been on involving airplanes have had plane delays so far.  I used to sort of like flying; now I pretty much don’t, and I get to fly in a week and a couple of days for work, so I’m not looking forward to that.

But I can’t wait to see Sam again. :3