Gimme some Money.

That about sums up my needs at the moment. Between needing a new roof, a new water heater, a water softener, heating oil, six tons of coal and a new car, I am about to start knocking over liquor stores on the weekends.

In the spirit of sharing inconsequential things in my life with total strangers, here's a picture of my new car:

It's a Honda Fit, and I had to wait about a month for it to be shipped over here from Japan because they don't make them here yet. I've had it for about a month now, and I think I really like it. It gets about 38 mpg if I'm careful, and about 35 if I'm not. It's halved my gasoline bill, and dropped my monthly payment by about 90 bucks. It also holds a lot of shit. The other day I filled it with twelve 2x10x6 pieces of treated lumber, some 2x4's and a bunch of other crap. A few days before that, I hauled about eight 50lb bags of salt for the water softener. It will hold a couple of backpacks and other assorted camping gear, which is the main reason I liked it. The interior is pretty nice, considering it's the cheapest car Honda sells, and it has an AUX port for my ipod. Yes, I upgraded to the sport model just because of that feature.

There are a few things I don't like about it, however. 109 horsepower, for one. It really could use an extra 20 horses. Also, the gas pedal spring is weak. So just the normal weight of your foot presses it down. You have to hover your foot, which is tiring on longer trips, and if you don't use the cruise, you tend to pick up speed unintentionally. Speaking of that, this is the first thing I noticed when I test drove one:

That's the speedometer in a car that has 109 hp. I would say Honda was overreaching a bit, because I can't think of a single way this car could break the 100mph mark. Oh wait -- yes I can.

The water softener purchase was because our hard water was wrecking everything in the house that has water running through it. The boiler, the ice-maker, the washing machine and our first dishwasher all succumbed to the appliance equivalent of arteriosclerosis.

The new water heater was necessary because the aforementioned hard water also completely crapped up the copper coil inside the boiler, and as a result, our hot water slowed to a trickle. I decided that I couldn't go through another winter taking showers that felt like I was being pissed on by a demon with a prostate problem, so thank you jeebuz for Lowe's "12 months no interest for anything over $299" deal.

On the plus side, I'm getting really good at sweating copper pipe, and I consider that solid training for when I become a plumber. You can't outsource that. My friend Yort and I have decided we're going to quit working in IT and just start a plumbing company. Here's our new logo:

I am actually glad Yort is giving serious thought to a career in plumbing, because I think he would make a really shitty fireman, judging by this photo of the 3rd Annual June Burning of the Christmas Tree:

I don't know why he feels the need to burn my christmas tree. I just let him. It's easier that way.


  1. Anonymous10:05 PM

    i want you to be a plumber...and i want you to sell t-shirts...but i only want one if it is a real business...LOL

  2. I love the graphic art. My friend is a plumber and has the same moto, therefor I felt the need to share your page with my friend. Way to be on the pulse of the plumber.

  3. "I was being pissed on by a demon with a prostate problem....."


  4. Welcome to the world of Honda. Take care of it and it will never die. Even if it does, the awesome Honda guys will say "it really shouldn't do that so we're going to fix that for you." I tell my girls to take care of our 1999 and 2003 Hondas because in 5 years, guess what they are getting?

  5. Your car is so cute!!!! Sorry, I had to have a girly moment.

  6. Thank you Jeebus for those smart Japanese chaps. They make cars that get great gas mileage and are extremely reliable, but WTF is up with the design? I hate to tell you this, but, your car looks like a pregnant roller skate.

  7. Those are kilometers on the speedometer. I'm sure it will do 140 clicks an hour.

  8. anon, let's hope it doesn't come to that.

    rockin' - that's funny!

    mom, I had a 93 hatchback and loved it..it finally started burning oil around 2001, at 180k.

    Steph, it's ugly. Butt ugly.

    Mumoftwo, It was either this or a yaris. I resisted the Fit for a long time because I wanted the Mazda 3 hatchback, but for 6 grand more and almost ten mpg less, ugliness won out. The best description I've heard for the Yaris is "Lunging dung beetle."

    Silverstar, the Kilometers are the small numbers on the inside...I know it'll do 140 clicks an hour because I do that every morning....

  9. Anonymous7:15 AM

    I LOVE hondas. My current and most favorite of the 3 Honda's I have owned is a 1989 Honda Prelude.

    YES 1989. It has almost 200k miles.

  10. Anonymous8:08 AM

    I'd be more inclined to go with "Your shit is our bread and butter."

  11. The car is adorable, congrats! At this point a new car would only come my way courtesy of a brief torrid relationship with some kind of car-buying sugar daddy. I comfort myself with the knowledge that driving my 1995 Saturn POS is keeping me humble.

  12. Anonymous9:59 AM

    Call me a dork, but I'm sooooo jealous of your Honda Fit. I want one BAD. I'm not really a car person but I am a big fan of not corn-holing the planet, and of saving money.

    I have to say, however, that you wasted your money buying a hot water heater. We have a water heater but use it only on our cold water. Using it for hot water seems a little pointless and wasteful.

    By the way, I am hugely proud that I have replaced two well pumps in the last 8 years single-handedly without a puller(one was 250 feet deep). I figured you'd be impressed by that. No one else seems to care all that much.


  13. Do you routinely park in the middle of the driveway? Or was it just for the purpose of the picture?

    I want a Fit, too. My V8 F-150 is sucking the life force out of me.

  14. Mr. Virgil not to say anything against your new lil Fit, but the Fit just didn’t fit. When they first came out my wife and I went to the local Honda dealer to get our old 1988 Accord sedan serviced. We were checking out the new cars and the new Honda Fit. We were considering purchasing a new commuter car.

    A salesman approached and tried to talk us into spending $16k+ on a new Fit, because it’s way more “economical” then our old Accord. OK, I know I am not the sharpest tool in the shed, but I do know my numbers.

    Our 1988 Accord currently has 160k+ miles. My wife originally bought it second hand from a friend, miles unknown at the time? It became my car a few years ago to commute to work. It was more pleasant to drive then the old stinky, squeaky Trooper II.

    To make a short story longer… I couldn’t understand the salesman’s logic. Our Honda Accord has no monthly payment. It cost less then the down payment required to purchase a new Fit. Plus, until just recently, we got 36 Mpg on the open road and 31 Mpg in town. Not to mention the savings per year in insurance. We have liability only, and insurance cost less then $400 a year.

    Even though it’s a 20 year old car, we spend less then $500 a year in maintenance. Less now that it has been sitting waiting for a carburetor parts from Japan. Even with our carburetor issues we still manage to get 28+ Mpg out of the ol’gal. *(Carburetor has taken a turn for the and needs to be rebuilt)

    In our current economic time in the great U.S. of A. with high gas prices we should consider recycling our older cars. They may not be the technical marvels that are on the road today… but they seem to get better gas mileage if maintained in good working order.

    KaThump! That’s just me stepping off my soapbox.

  15. The Fit is not so bad looking.

    My neighbor has one of the Smart cars. Now that thing is ugly! It is bright yellow and they put black vinyl dots on it, which makes it look even better...

    BTW JV, thanks for doing your share to stimulate the economy.

  16. One of my favorite movies, and one of my favorite songs from said movie. But I guess that surprises no one, eh?

  17. Kirk,

    Hopefully I can add to your understanding. think the logic of the car salesman went something like this:

    See Person looking at car.

    Say anything that plants the seed in head that person needs to buy a car.

    Say anything to justify higher
    selling price for car.

    Pretend to take offer to Sales Manager.

    Sell dealer add-ons.

    Make money.

    Feed Family.

    I don't know if it satisfies the rules of formal logic but certainly logical.
    Feed Family.

  18. My fiance is a commercial plumber, and whenever he's asked about his profession, he stresses COMMERCIAL because he "doesn't deal with shit".

  19. Dude, you bought an orange car on purpose?

  20. The only way to enjoy a career in plumbing, sans poop, is to install sprinkler irrigation. Well sure, you might step in dog doo somewhere along the way seeing as it's outdoor work, but you won't ever have to deal with a problem caused by poop. And that's a comforting thought.

  21. Anonymous1:25 PM

    Am I allowed to say that your new car is SUPER cute?
    Cuz it is. ;)

  22. Anonymous3:49 PM

    I think it says something about those of us who have been hard water victims that the day I bought my water softer is only behind my wedding and the birth of one of my children as the best day ever.

    What? The other kid is only 2 and I'm not that attached yet.

  23. Anonymous4:44 PM

    that looks like burnt orange to me. hook em.

  24. Anonymous4:47 PM

    you can put an entire bicycle in the back of a Fit. besides the fact that it's made by Oscar Meyer, it's a great car. on my short list once the wheels fall off my current shitmobile...

  25. Anonymous5:01 PM

    If I were looking for a plumber your company name would absolutely make me call you, unless my problem involved poop of course. I also love the picture. You should start designing company logos on the side.

    I think Yort has the right idea with the Christmas tree. I have a Jehovah's witness sister-in-law who keeps telling me that Christmas is a pagan holiday so what's better than dancing around the burning Christmas tree?

    Wait, I'll tell you what would be better, dancing around it naked

  26. Anonymous5:43 PM

    Hee! I live in Japan and, unless you're rockin' a luxury-type car, you're almost guaranteed to have a Fit.

    Or a Cube, which, coincidentally enough, is shaped like a shoebox with wheels. Also, the most common colour among female drivers seems to be this off-pinky mauve.

    Reflect on this the next time someone tells you your little Fit is funny-looking.

  27. You're only now starting to knock over liquor stores?

    Jeez. You haven't lived.

  28. LOL! yeah I'm ready to start hooking on the streets to make more money to keep up with inflation! not sure my hubby or kids would approve...but hey they gotta eat!

  29. Anonymous7:48 PM

    Welcome to the wonderful world of rollerskate ridicule! I've had one for years but I laugh all the way to the bank with my 42 to 48mpg!
    I've fit everything from lumber to surfboards to a futon in that thing and while i'd like a new car i'm not buying until I can find another like it.

    It's amazing though how home problems always hit all at once. I suggest dressing up as bigfoot, waiting for hikers and growling at them until they drop their gear and run. Then root through their packs for spare cash and trail mix.

  30. Mary, that's not bad. It's like the septic guy who has "We're #1 in the #2 Business" on his truck.

    DILF, what the hell are you talking about? ;) Also, I am totally impressed. I've done something similar, but it was putting one in, not taking it out. You know what 80 feet of well rod and a brass well head sounds like rushing through 80 feet of 1.5" PVC tube sounds like? It sounds like failure. Second time was the charm though. $350 bucks later.

    Badass Geek - yes, yes I do. The reason is it's between the two motion sensor activated deer sprinklers, and that way I don't get wet.

    Kirk, you are totally right, and this wouldn't have happened had my 2000 nissan sentra cooperated and not developed a leaky gas tank, a broken front spring, an evap cannister problem and assorted other problems all at once. Plus we traded a PT Cruiser that I still owed almost 3 years on - long story.) I didn't want to drive the PT when my wife inherited a better car, so off it went. I figured if I was going to have a car payment, it might as well be on something I liked that didn't cost me a fortune.

    Helen, it's not by choice.

    mojo, we need to hang.

    Karen, your fiance is a smart, smart man.

    Suz, yes. On purpose. It looked better in the brochure. What can I say.

    Glen, that is truly a comforting thought.

    De, sure -- you are allowed to say anything you like!

    Leigh, you are right. Burnt Orange it is.

    SD, I have small mineral stalactites (or is it mites? I'm too lazy to look it up) hanging from my water pipes. Hard water sucks. 12 years I lived with it.

    Daisy, you can also put a whole alpaca in it. I mean in once piece. Not like, chopped up or anything.

    anon, send the JW's over. I love to share my religious views with them. And burn stuff while I do it.

    Damn T, isn't it a Jazz over there?

    Grant, not yet. I hear it's a rush.

    April, good luck! Stay off my corner.

    Alex, you are right! I think I will take your suggestion, but before hunting season opens.

  31. Anonymous1:34 AM

    I love the Fit! I am kicking my ass for not buying a similar car or even an electric/hybrid. I bought a Pontiac Vibe and I like it, but I wish I had a hybrid now. I love the pic of the Fit skydiving. lol. Having friends with various skills (electrical, plumbing, etc.) is always a good thing!


  32. You are so funny! I love the name of your company, go for it. My husband started his own business, it is scary but he is so happy! Best, Becs

  33. That's side-splitting.

    So what exactly is terminal velocity for the "Fit"???


  34. Love the skydiving Fit!! I can paypal you a quarter - I'll do it tomorrow. Promise.

  35. Anonymous1:11 PM

    So how much more debt did you incur buying the Fit? I realize your payment is lower, gas is halved, but if it affects your debt load too much, is it still worth it? I'm just wondering, because I would be interested in purchasing one, but I am a long term thinker. Are you investing the difference? I know, lots of personal questions from someone you don't know, sorry. Really am interested.

  36. Hondas rule!!!

    My last 4 cars have been Hondas and now I drive a Honda Odyssey mini-van (yes, I have kids and a mini-van is practically a necessity).

    I don't think there's anything wrong with the way the Fit looks. Now, Scions...those are some ugly, boxy-looking things.

  37. Well...My debt load was increased by about 3 grand over 5 years, since I put a good chunk down, however I did get a 4.3% interest rate, and the payment difference between the PT Cruiser and the Fit was almost a hundred a month. I drive 80 miles every day. The main problem was getting out from under the PT Cruiser, since I still owed more than the car was worth. I took a hit on that to the tune of about 2 grand.

    After figuring everything out, with the assumption that gas wasn't going below $4 a gallon for the term of the loan, that I would have additional car repairs coming down the line for the nissan (seized rear caliper, rusting brake lines, almost bald tires with odd wear patterns, some interesting changes in the transmission shift points, and clunks in the steering when turning left were all indicators) and the fact that I tend to keep cars until they have at least 150K on the odometer, I figured in the long run I'd break even or be a little ahead and also have a vehicle I liked, since I spend ten hours a week in it. Plus I sold the Nissan and took that money and added it to the down payment to reduce what I owed even further, since there's no pre-payment penalty on the loan. Whew! Now that I've justified my purchase to a complete stranger, I feel comfortable in asking you this -- can you send 5 grand to my paypal account at johnnyvirgil@myway.com? Thank you very much.

  38. I love Hondas!! I have never heard of this model before though. It looks like a nice commuter car.
    We had an Accord until we needed to upgrade to more seats. Then we got an Odyssey. Drove that forever, (now we have a town and country), but we are getting ready to buy a Ridgeline for my husband.
    Hondas are cool cars!
    Sorry you are getting hit up bad right now. That's how it always seems to happen though, everything breaks at once.

  39. Love the logo :) We have similar hard-water issues. Didja know that even with a water softener, that you're supposed to drain your water heater tank twice a year (if you have a tank, that is)? We didn't know that, and obviously the people before us REALLY didn't know it. I think the water heater was 1/3 full of sediment. Which is caused by hard water, but also the reaction of the coil in the hot water heater...so even water softeners don't prevent it.

    I thought it was new technology that make the tank so much lighter coming into the house than going out...but no...it was the lack of sediment. Sheesh!

  40. Anonymous4:43 AM

    If it is called a Jazz, I haven't heard anyone say it. One of my coworkers told me his wife drives a Fit.

    Actually, I found this out because he was telling me how he got his dad (who's a Big Man in the Canadian auto body industry) to send him a Jaguar just so he doesn't have to be seen behind the wheel of a Fit.

    Once again, it could be worse: BIG. MAUVE. CUBEMOBILE.

  41. Anonymous4:52 AM

    Don't know where you live as I just started reading, but even with the softener, if you can
    find a product called Sparkel,do
    it! It will make you all very
    h a p p y.
    As happy as my new Jaguar is making me right now. The aluminum
    body gives me almost the same
    gas mileage, and I am just loving
    the luxury. I can't drive a fit,
    I'm sure I would have a fit driving
    one actually.
    I know -car snob - but try the Sparkel.


  42. I used to own a '94 Ford Aspire. I drove that car till it died. (It was a FORD after all) It got 43 miles hwy, 35 city. Loved that car. It was Barney purple. Butt ugly. Looked like a jelly bean on wheels. I got $500 for it on a trade in. Kinda wished I hung on to it with gas costing what it does. I now own Honda Odyssey. I love it. Ya know, except for all that it doesn't get 43 miles to the gallon...

    Love the color of your fit BTW.