Clergy Clatter

I think most of you know that my car got “totaled” in a hit-and-run. Fortunately, the seat belt worked, and I was able to walk away, without injury. The repair shop and GEICO kept the car for two weeks before notifying me that they were “totaling it”, and I needed to turn in the rental in two business days. That did not leave me a lot of time to car shop.  

Thinking about age, and other things, I was pretty sure this would be my last new car. It had to be “right” – it had to be “perfect.” So I sat down and made a list of what I wanted and what I did not want, and off I went in a mad dash of shopping.  

After visiting a couple of dealers, I ended up back at the Lincoln dealer. The old Lincoln had been a good car for me, except for some problems with electronics. I walked into the showroom, was greeted by a very young salesman, and glanced to my left at a beautiful car on the showroom; that, for all of its beauty, did not meet my “must list.” I explained to the salesman that I needed a new car and that it had to be a sedan rather than a SUV. It had to be a light color because dark colors are hard to keep clean. It had to have a light interior because dark is hot, had to have a sunroof, had to have all the gismos and gadgets, and a few other particulars. The salesman pointed to the beautiful dark gray car, with the black interior on the showroom floor at which I had been peeking out of the corner of my eye, and said, “Well, I was going to show you this one, but it’s dark with black interior. Is that a deal breaker?”. “Yes! Absolutely! Let’s see what else you have.” (We know where this is going, don’t we?)  

So off to the lot we went in 100 degree heat. Ford and Lincoln have discontinued production of sedans, so they only had a few left. I looked at each one, and none met my “perfect car” criteria. Back to the showroom we went to cool off and swap cards so I could head to the Jaguar dealer, drool over cars I would not afford, and make myself miserable. But on the way into the showroom, we happened to pass (foxy salesman) the dark car with the black interior and all the goodies I wanted. The rental had to be turned in tomorrow. It’s an omen. “How about working up some figures on this one? I know I don’t want it, but it won’t hurt to get some figures.” And the rest is history.   We all know this doesn’t just happen with cars. Oh, what real estate agents must go through.

We have our image of “the perfect”, and then the compromising begins. It’s not always a rational process. In fact, sometimes the whole thing is ridiculous. Maybe that’s what happened when God created humans. God had the idea of “the perfect”, but then compromises had to be made. And we’re the end result – not perfect, put pretty good.

Richard +

September 1, 2020

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A compilation of The Rev. Richard O. Bridgford’s most memorable articles from his nearly 25 years at Church of the Epiphany. Enjoy history, humor, nature, travel, and wacky experiences with Fr. Bridgford, his two-legged and four-legged friends! Recall:

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