In honor of buying a new car and actually going through the hell of selling my old old old car on craigslist, I will put up an exerpt about what it is like sifting through the bullhonky of what craigslist ads are really like. please keep in mind this was written a year ago and the condition of the car has deteriorated further since then.
I would be concerned about potential buyers of the car finding this post and changing their minds, but first of all, it’s craigslist and I doubt there is that much cross-research going on, and second of all, I’m not getting that many bites to begin with.
iIt’s So Hard To Say Goodbye To Shitbox Car(eeeeee)
I drive a shitbox car. It’s scary to even consider writing about the car, because telling jokes about the car is absolutely out of the question. Any time I write a joke about my car, truly believing every time that the joke is funny, the joke dies onstage, and a fairy loses their wings. I’ve even tried that onstage, and no it didn’t work. It didn’t work the 3 times I tried it after that either. I bet audiences can sense the truth, that my car isn’t funny, it’s just sad.I lied to myself about this car, told myself it was a good car cus it runs, but a good car should do more than run.
For a minute there i was thinking about buying a car, and I was looking at ads on craigslist. Browsing craigslist ads for cars means you have to keep a few questions in mind. Most important being “what’s wrong with it?” Theres always something wrong with it, especially if the price is reasonable or cheap. I thought a lot about what I would say about my car if I wanted to sell it. I wouldn’t want to lie to the people like they lie to me.
In reading a craigslist ad, it’s all about what they don’t say. I feel it is only right to provide absolutely everything they would need to know to say no to buying this car, and all the better because no matter what, i feel like shit for selling it to them. So here it is, if you know how to read between the lines (or in this case, the parentheses), you will know everything you need to know to make an informed decision to keep looking.
Craigslist ad for my car:
(5 or 6 pictures of the car from different angles)
1993 Toyota Camry, >160,000 miles. 2000$ OBO (anything more than 50$ is overpayment)
4 cylinder, 4 door sedan. (Door handles are busted. All 4 doors can let you in, some lack door handles to get out.)
don’t lock the driver side door, the key doesn’t turn the lock (don’t ask, it’s a long story)
Need’s paint job. (paint is chipped and seemingly melting)
Needs re-upholstery. (dashboard is shredded like it took a lashing)
Minor dents and dinges. (like it’s lived through a couple Katrinas. It didn’t, but like it)
Best air conditioning and heating system I’ve ever had (that part is true)
Gets great mileage. (Wait does that mean lots of mileage? Lots of mileage.)
No really, 25 mpg around town, 28 mpg highway.
Brand new (severely undersized) tires.
Aftermarket stereo. (3 working speakers, no radio)
New fuel line, (replaced last one after it leaked ¾ of a tank of gasoline all over my engine. My mechanic said it was a miracle I didn’t catch on fire.)
Really reliable, daily driver. (Every day that it just starts up, I’m surprised)
most people have the joy of discussion their shitbox car after they have had the pleasure of getting rid of it. Not so in this case. On some level, as much as I believe I deserve happiness and good things (after many years of believing the opposite), believing I am capable of owning basic necessities has yet to sink in. I’m referring to extraneous human needs like health care, dental, and getting a more than shitbox car. I say this out of fear of another monthly bill. Making payments on a car 2005 or newer just doesnt seem in the budget. I would rather own a deadly old car, make occasional (and unexpected) payments to fix it, and own the thing outright. I like to pay things outright, and own things outright, and god damnit if i’m going to have a shitbox car, i’m going to be very proud of it, until i looked at it one day and i broke a door handle with my eyes. it crumbled like sand at my feet and all i did to make it break was look lovingly at it.
except for those occasional moments when this car tries to kill me, it’s been an excellent car. It’s never not started right up and taken me where I need to go. Even if it’s an 8 hour drive, even when it was leaking gasoline over my engine, it’s never been anything but consistent. And consistently, since I’ve owned it, it’s needed to be replaced.
what it really boils down to is a hard truth to accept: to date this has been the worst purchase I have ever made. Entirely with my own money, I decided this 93 toyota camry for 1,200$ was a reasonable buy, with less than 140,000 miles on it. I’ve since put upwards of 5000$ into it, not including the purchase price. with every repair it drives better, and with every improvement something else breaks. I wish I could keep it just to set it on fire in a parking lot to watch it burn, but I really can’t let it go for any less than what a reasonable junkyard would take for it.
for funs sake, here is a link to the ACTUAL ad I have on craigslist right now for my car.