posted on September 18, 2007 07:45
One of the insidious aspects of divorce is all the stuff that follows you around to remind you of your lapse in romantic judgment.
Since my own divorce in 2002 (and 2003), the biggest monkey on my back was a 2000 Subaru Outback, which—as my ex-wife was delighted to inform me when I brought it home—is a station wagon. Not an SUV. By the time the insurance company declared it a total loss this past July, the vehicle had acquired more battle scars than I have, and had proved to be a method of birth control far superior to mere castration. It was time for a change.
Enter the Beast.
The Beast is a 1988 Jeep Wrangler (YJ series). The odometer reads something north of 140,000 miles, but since the speedometer was never calibrated to account for the 17% advantage introduced by the oversized tires, the actual mileage could be somewhat higher.
On the plus side, the Beast has a brand-new clutch and a newly rebuilt engine, with just 6,000 miles logged so far (or close to 7,000... take your pick).
I bought the Beast on eBay Motors—worth a look, if you haven't already—from a young local cop in New York Mills, NY. Getting it back to Chicago was an adventure and a half, and the severe shaking I received all along the way appears to have rendered my cool psychic cream into chunky Jeep-nut butter.
In other words, I think I'm in love.
So now I have a new project: to restore the Beast to a point where a lady might hoist herself into the passenger seat without fear of rips, stains, or other uninvited insults to her attire or her innocence. I've stood up a Jeep Stuff page where I will desperately be seeking the advice of Jeep owners more experienced than I am. If you're one, for G-d's sake don't be shy about lending a hand.