OT: The Long Hot Summer

OK, we are still recovering from our 6/1 garage fire that caused lots of smoke damage in the house. Three major jobs to complete; carpets, painting, and unloading the tractor trailer size “pod” taking up our entire driveway. Hopefully by the end of this month :crossed_fingers:

Sold my 2007 Accord because of repair costs that far exceeded the value of the beat up car. So we were left driving Ms. Wolf’s 2012 Civic with 28k miles on it (it was in very good shape and, yes, only 28k miles).

Our oldest son & family had their annual east coast visit at his in-laws and, as they always do, were going to drive 7 hours to visit us for a few days. Driving 7 hours can be a Herculean task when you have 3 vilde chaya’s (aka our grandsons) in the back seat. So we thought, let’s give them a break and rent place near Woodstock to make it easier for them.

Well, no good deed goes unpunished.

2 hours into our trip, cruising on the NYS Thruway, we were in a pack of cars and trucks. I was driving carefully in the right lane (Ms. Wolf is a nervous passenger), waiting for a large gap to move over to pass a slow truck.

A steady stream of cars and trucks were passing us in the left lane. Suddenly, I noticed some large metal objects fall off a trailer up ahead in the left lane.

Then, one of those strange and rare moments occurred when time seemed to slow down even though we were cruising at 68 mph. My first thought was “oh something” and then I had to make an instant decision. Cars to my left, downward slope to my right, and I decided that driving over the metal object bouncing in my lane was the best option.

Not a good metal crunching sound.

I pulled over to the shoulder, noticed no dashboard lights were on. Good sign, I thought. Cars behind us kept speeding along at 65+ mph. I try to drive to move over a bit more and the car said, nope, I’m not going anywhere. Not a good sign. Turned on the emergency flashers and we exited the car, stage right, and moved as far away from the car as possible.

We look down the Thruway and notice 3 other cars on the shoulder, 2 on the right side and 1 on the left. Called Triple A for a tow and watched cars flying by.

20 minutes later an unmarked police car came by, got an update from me, said continue to stay away from the road, and went to check the other cars.

A couple of minutes later someone decided to brake hard when they saw 4 cars off the road, creating a 3-car collision right in front of us that sounded horrible and created a cloud of air bag powder. The Thruway came to screeching halt.

Now, I’m way to late for this, but long story short ……

No one is seriously injured, our car was totaled, we made it to the house 5 hours late, and we now own zero cars. But our grandsons are damn cute. When they’re sleeping.

My house nearly burned down, I totaled my car, didn’t win a $1.5 billion lottery, and strangely, I feel blessed. No one was hurt.

Looking at an Accord EX, but the extra fees are outrageous. Friends who a car savvy (I’m not) are telling me to wait until the 4th quarter to buy a car. My sister-in-law lives a 15 minute walk from us and she just broke her foot (I swear, I didn’t push her down the stairs on purpose), so we’re using her car for 6 weeks or so.

It’s been one heck of a summer.


Well done instant decision, and damn I hate badly loaded vehicles.
Congrats on darling rug rats and knowing how to do happiness and serenity!
I agree with your car friends.
Metal falling off trucks is horrific.

david fb


@AlphaWolf I am wishing your family health and safety. That’s all that matters, even with your extraordinary run of bad luck.



I’m convinced that’s an evolutionary trait developed for self preservation. If they weren’t cute and adorable while sleeping (and most vulnerable) they wouldn’t survive childhood. :grinning: :astonished:



Sorry to hear about this…But yes, the fact that everyone of you are safe is far more important…Hopefully, this settles down quickly!


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Precisely what is wrong with the Civic? An insurance company will “total” a car if the repair would be more than what their book says the car is worth. If it isn’t really major damage, more a matter of the age of the car, might it be feasible to buy the car from the insurance company as salvage, and repair it, for less than what a dealer will gouge you for a new car? Of course, then the Civic would have a branded title, which would take a chunk out of the resale value.

Anecdote a coworker bought a second hand Chevy Cavalier (this was some years ago) as a go-to-work car. Soon after buying the Cav, he was driving down a metro Detroit freeway, on the way to a job site, and hit a junk transmission that had fallen off a truck ahead of him. Lots of Cavs in junk yards, so he had his car repaired with salvage parts, and he was back on the road. A couple other guys at word didn’t hit anything, just put over 200,000 miles on their cars. By the 200K mark, those cars were junkyard salvage parts in formation: engines and transmissions.

Another thought, might be worth asking, to price out a lease, to get you past the automaker’s leveraging the “shortage” narrative to gouge customers on purchases.

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According to the insurance adjuster who examined the vehicle, there were numerous items under the car that needed to be replaced, the biggest ticket item being the transmission. The collision shop it was towed to offered to throw a transmission with 55k miles on it, but the car only had 28k miles on it. Thanks, but no thanks.

The adjuster also saw other damage under the car which could potentially cause problems down the road (no pun intended). So the insurance company wanted to total it. It didn’t make sense to me either to put over $10k into an 11 year old Civic to repair everything. It’s a nice car, but I’m looking for less stress in my life these days. LOL.

Plus, we had already been looking for a new car prior to the accident, mainly for the safety upgrades. I had a few offers for the car from dealers and I researched the value online. I think the insurance company made an offer that was more than fair.

I know 2 people who I trust and work in the car industry. They both say wait until Q4 to buy a car. We have my SIL’s car until mid September and now we’re talking car sharing for another month or two. It’s a gamble, but I hate overpaying for any asset, especially big ticket items like a house, stocks, and cars.

The one exception I make is for illegal Cuban cigars. :face_with_peeking_eye:


Regarding buying automobiles in the 4Q to take advantage of “obsolesence discounts”, you have any interest in buying skis the time to buy is just about over. Ski shops often mark down old models more than 50%.

david fb

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Wolves glad y’all are okay.

I have heard of bad luck…but not like that. Short of medical stuff. So okay will do. Loved is pretty cool as well.

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I’m floored.

We went to look at Accords last Friday. When I asked to see the final cost, it included $2k added to the MSRP. When I asked about the $2k, he used a bunch of fancy words, but basically they were sticking it to us because they could.

We told the guy we wanted some time to think about it. He replied that we should put a deposit down to hold it because they’re flying off the lot. We thanked him and left without leaving a deposit.

This morning on our daily walk, we each mentioned how we’ve seen ads offering discounts for certain brands of new cars, like Kia.

I just got a call from him offering me the car for MSRP.

Ms.Wolf, a notorious tightwad, gave me her infamous “tell him to reproduce with himself” look.

OK, probably making a mistake, but I’m holding out.

At least I’ll be able to eat dinner without needing a food taster.


Take the Honda Accord

Cut your losses so to speak. Move on with your life. Dont hold onto your recent past.