I have a confession to make, I am a driver of a 2009 Jetta TDI and embarrassed about it.
This is when you all say in unison, “Hello 2009 Jetta TDI driver.” And I give you a knowing nod.
Last week, soon after the controversy broke, I went into my local VW dealership, which slightly resembled a ghost town with that new car smell. I introduced myself and explained that I was concerned about my vehicle and asked what my options were at this point. The salesperson on duty kept his cool, asked me if I could wait just a second and then disappeared to the back. A second man quickly came out and shook my hand, I was obviously being pawned off to the General Manager. I repeated what I originally said to the salesperson and the manager took me into his office. After politely listening to his well-rehearsed lines, I told him I wanted to be proactive with my decision regarding this vehicle that is spewing forty times the allowable toxins in the air. I was told to just sit tight for now until Volkswagen made a decision on what they were going to do.
I responded by repeating what he said, “So your proactive advice is to just sit tight and wait?”
He then explained that although I had lost 50-60% of the value of my car in a short few weeks, if I wanted to purchase a new vehicle, VW would give me $2,000 in loyalty cash. I do recall laughing out loud at this point, and it was not the last time I did so during our conversation.
Next he tried to reassure me that Volkswagen diesel vehicles were safe, which I never questioned, and in high demand. Now this I questioned. He said he had a lot full of them he could sell today if allowed because the demand was so high, and that every salesperson had at least one customer they had turned away, who was interested in a TDI. This is when our conversation came to a cordial end.
Although I find his “in high demand” statement hard to believe, much like Fox Mulder from the X Files, I want to believe. If you are one of the masses in search of a vehicle which cannot pass an emission test (well it can pass thanks to the German engineering which kicks in just in time to allow for a false reading), I want to hear from you. According to my VW dealership you are out there, and I am looking for you. Please feel free to contact me. Thanks.
I am not saying anything new here, but it needs to be said, Social Media is a Pandora’s Box full of information and temptations that will lead you astray, and my warning stems from this …
Last year in a desperate attempt to save my dwindling rose garden, I actually tried one of those “tips” trending on Facebook. This is not something I routinely do, but I am definitely not above trying new things or being influenced by others, so with the same gusto I’ve always taken with peer pressure, I owned it! I was ready to take a simple rose clipping, stick it in a potato and propagate a beautiful abundant bush.
These are the reasons this post intrigued me:
First, it was simple. All you had to do was take a cutting from an existing healthy rose-bush, remove the stems and stick it into a potato, then plant the potato in the ground with the hints of a new rose-bush above the soil. Easy!
Second, I had a dead rose-bush that needed to be replaced and I had a potato.
So, I got to work. I followed the instructions (stem + potato) and stuck that potato dead center. I was right, IT WAS EASY, now all I had to do was water it and wait. This is the easiest thing I’ve ever done!
As the seasons changed, I waited … and … nothing. My dream of a beautiful bush withered and along with it all my expectations of what Facebook could do for me.
Fall, Winter and Spring passed to no avail. Then, Summer, life was rearing its ugly head, making itself known by fighting its way through the ground to the surface of the earth.
It worked! I could see a tiny bit of green, it was alive. Thank you Facebook! With a renewed feeling of worth, I watered, waited, and it grew.
Wait. Whaaaat?!? This must be the ugly duckling of roses, but unlike the beautiful swan that revealed itself at the end of the story, I had nothing but a spud.
Yup! I planted a potato and that’s exactly what I got.
Sometimes a rose is still a rose … until it’s a potato.
Now that my six year-old, Azul, has incorporated the word “epic” into his vocabulary, I have a totally different view of the utterance.
I always used it in its traditional sense, a long poem of heroic deeds, such as, The Iliad and The Odyssey. That definition gives the word a romantic feel, something to ponder, it takes you on a journey to enjoy.
Webster defines it as:
1) a long narrative poem in elevated style recounting the deeds of a legendary or historical hero
2) a work of art (as a novel or drama) that resembles or suggests an epic
Today, either used alone or paired with “fail,” it has lost its perception of grandeur. No longer is it a beautiful way to experience a legend, but a word that is only defined as “big.”
I know many terms come in and out of fashion and have a circular life cycle; that makes me wonder if Homer was belittled by his peers who said, “Epic? Bahahaha! Dude that totally just means ‘big.’ ”
Although I am not willing to completely give up on the romanticism of the word, currently, anyone using or overusing “epic” just seems as if they have the vocabulary of a first grader, or they’re trying way too hard.
“That was epic!”