Because nothing says “loss and remorse” like walking on train tracks carrying 40s and baseball bats set against low-tempo R&B:
*Apologies to C&K’s “Good Times Together,” Michelle Branch’s “Goodbye to You,” Sinead O’Connor’s “Nothing Compares 2 U,” PM Dawn’s “I’d Die Without You,” Boyz II Men’s “It’s So Hard to Say Goodbye to Yesterday,” Mariah Carey’s “Can’t Let Go,” but not P. Diddy’s/Faith Evans’/112’s “I’ll Be Missing You.”
We’ve been moving toward hypothetically purchasing a new car since last year. In truth, we had always eyed Madison’s completion of pre-school as the first chance we’d realistically have to get a new car. Lynnette and I purchased our cars in 2003, right around the time we got together. It wasn’t a matter of “if” at this point, it was going to happen, and it was going to be Lynnette who got the new car. I would get her old car. Mr. 8 (so named because of the number 8 on his dashboard cover), my Mazda Protege 5 would be taken out behind the shed and traded in.
I knew this day was coming, but it didn’t make it any easier. When my brother Paul and my parents decided to let go of Mr. GNZ, we had a huge send off for him (the car). I half-jokingly expressed my desire to do the same for Mr. 8. Lynnette said “Why? Who are you going to invite?” Double Ouch. Undermining my emotional attachment for my car and referencing the fact that I have no friends. That’s uns.
Lynnette couldn’t wait to get rid of Mr. 8, and I suppose the rational part of me can understand. Mr 8 was at at times, a money pit on four wheels. Still, he was my first car. I had to share Mr. GNZ with my brothers. At least one of them shared it with dozens of women. Mr. GNZ was mine, but he was never mine, if that makes any sense. In a way, Lynnette’s unspoken yet obvious disdain for Mr. 8 was similar to the way a girlfriend might have issue with one of your best friends. It doesn’t matter the reason, what it comes down to is: A) she doesn’t understand and/or did not experience the history the two of you share, and B) this ignorance precludes her from seeing him the same way you do.
I poured a little Coke out for Mr. 8 yesterday afternoon. I am sure you know how much Coke means to me, therefore you understand how much Mr. 8 meant to me. I also sang that one line of Michelle Branch’s “Goodbye to You” that I know just seconds before I handed over Mr. 8’s keys. It was a great ten years, Mr. 8, when your transmission wasn’t shitting the bed and the AC was arctic. I’ll see you around, buddy.
As if that wasn’t enough an emotional roller coaster, yesterday was also my first day back at work. We had a faculty retreat in Kalihi. It’s one of the most depressing days of the year. When I got home, Lynnette waved an envelope at me. It was for Mr. 8’s registration, safety check, and keys. She was so excited about the prospect of her new car that she had taken the Corolla keys off her key chain and left them for me on the island. I swapped mine out for those, then joined the bottom half of my key chain to them. During the summer, I leave the orange part of my keys at home so I don’t have to lug them around. The shape and weight of my new key set doesn’t feel quite right, but I am sure like everything else in life, I will get used to it.
Obviously, I view both changes as highly symbolic and indicative of what is to come. My tan lines will fade, I will eventually not smell of chlorine. I will not smoke like a champ and/or chimney in Mr. 8 on the way home in the worst traffic in the nation. I will have to wear shirts and ties again. Summer is dead. I will now live for Fall Break. Remember, I live my life a quarter-school year at a time. I will have more pictures later, but for now: