Beep beep mmm beep beep yeah...
We need some help from you now...

I still owe money...

It's been a scary long time since I've blogged and, even when I did, my few most recent posts were all about my car problems.

And, yet, I left you all hanging on the outcome, didn't I?

Well that's just not fair.

So I'm dedicating this Snippet Wednesday to all the stuff that's been going on in the week and a half since I last blogged.

As you know, I took my truck in for some work. That work uncovered a need for other work. And there was even some work beyond that. All told, the work-upon-work-upon-work would've equalled more than one thousand dollars greater than the value of my truck in good shape. So I opted out. This, of course, necessitated me bidding a very fond farewell to my beloved Red Ranger.

13.5 years and 155,000 miles, my friend. We've had some great times. You are missed.

I guess it couldn't have happened at a better time. 'Twas the week of the Chicago Auto Show, after all. So Katie and I ventured into the big, bad city to see what the major automakers had available. The two of us were considering this trip to be nothing but business, I didn't take my big camera like I normally would in order to snap my endless stream of photographs.

WIthout my camera and knowing that this would lead to a major expenditure meant that this trip got very old very quick. I was so beaten down by everything that had happened that even the cars I had always liked up to that point did nothing for me.

We left a bit dejected.

My dad and I began shopping in earnest on the Monday after the truck died and, again, I ended the day dejected. We went out the next day as well and something was clearly different this day. I wrapped things up having placed a deposit on a new car. What kind? A 2011 Hyundai Sonata.

On Thursday night, Katie and I returned to the dealership (with my entire family in tow) and went through a couple hours of tutorials and a lot of paperwork. Now we own it.

And she be beautiful. She drives great. Is ridiculously comfortable. Has bluetooth connectivity. Came with three months of free XM Radio. And, most importantly, we got a great deal that keeps our monthly payment well below what I had set as the max that I was willing to spend.

We've named her Grayson. Both because we really dig the character from Cougar Town and because this is a gray Sonata. Get it? Gray Sonata? Gray-Son? Yeah, we're clever like that. 

In addition to being tired of car dealerships, we're also tired of red meat. For four days in a row, we had steaks and burgers and steaks and steaks and... we just can't do it anymore. WE NEED CARBS!!

On Saturday, Katie and I were invited to the Asian American Coalition of Chicago's 28th annual Lunar New Year Celebration at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare. It was a very cool night that involved dance and traditions and politicians and public speaking and food and liquor. We had a lot of fun.

And in the audience were a bunch of local newscasters and politicians, which made us both feel way more elite than either of us ever should.

Ameya Pawar  Etihad Reps

[At left we have the first ever Indian-American Alderman in Chicago, Ameya Pawar, and at right is Secretary of State Jesse White with a bunch of reps from Etihad Airlines.]

The great thing about it all was that it was free. Considering we signed our lives away at Hyundai, free is a very good thing right about now.

So, yes, we're accepting charity right now if anyone is giving.

Anybody? Anybody? Bueller?

So one of the few semi-free things we can do is watch TV [I'm really reaching on that connection between this snippet and the rest; technically, this could almost be a Totally Unrelated Aside]. So, as I type this, I'm playing catch up on a few weeks worth of Lights Out and Justified. Of course, Timothy Olyphant had to go and pull one of my huge pet peeves in an episode by overenunciating the word "realtor."

Have you been hearing that in television and radio commercials? Instead of the "REEL-tuhr" that I've always used, I keep hearing them pronounce it "reel-TORRRRRR." It bugs the hell out of me.

I guess another relatively inexpensive thing I could do is blog some more. I really need to get back in the habit of regularly posting. Doesn't have to be everyday, just several days. And I think I might try redesigning the ol' blog as well. Not just a new banner, but simplify things overall. I'm kinda sick of the sidebar crap. I think I may do away with it entirely. I haven't done any real work on this site in a couple years now. It's about time, don'cha think?