As much as I try, I tend to be somewhat prejudiced against certain groups of people, no matter what I do. I voted for Obama, so my prejudice is not for all of the specific groups and it's not a white power issue, because I don't feel the white man is any better than anyone else. However, when certain groups of people treat you a certain way, you tend to notice that type of individual for that type of treatment.
Here is where my story thickens... Seven years ago, in 2003, I bought the above mentioned vehicle after test driving it, something I seldom did. Because this car was "Special" I wanted to experience it personally. It had the 6 cylinder, 3.8 liter V-6 engine, but it was the first year that they added a supercharger for performance. After my test drive, I was SOLD. This car would satisfy my "need for speed", in lieu of not owning a Corvette, that usually had a spot in my stable. For those of you that don't know me, I spent 35 years in the automobile business, buying and selling cars. Although I almost never drove this car, I just enjoyed owning it. As the years went by, I did maintenance and repaired whatever went wrong with it, just like it was a part of the family. It was.
With my current situation, downsizing, I only have room for 4 cars, but own 5. Against my wishes, the 97 Regal has to go. I've since bought an 85 Corvette with only 43,000 miles about 7 years ago to take it's place, but never eliminated the Regal. Finally, I placed an ad in the world famous Autotrader, pricing it a little high and standing firm on my price. After all, this is still a 13 year old car with only 75,000 miles. In the 7 years that I've owned it, I've only put less than 3000 miles on it. When my sister-in-law picked me up from the hospital after heart surgery, she was driving the Buick and smoking a cigarette. I casually asked her to put it out, as no one has EVER smoked in that car! My biggest delight would to pull up to a light with a Camaro full of teenagers next to me and blow their doors off. But that's just me.
So I placed an ad in the Autotrader and filtered the calls, making sure all applicants understand it's not the typical Buick. When someone actually qualifies, I let them come out and make noises about, others to look at, and turn down offers left and right. Yesterday, I got an email from a guy named Steve that inquired as to the availability and I wrote him back that it was indeed available. He later called and set up an appointment. He then called and confirmed the appointment, O-V-E-R-K-I-L-L... Steve had a youthful voice and told me he lived at McDowell Mountain Ranch and I wasn't impressed, although I was supposed to be.
Okay, here comes the kicker. He pulls up in an old Ford pickup and Steve is older than me, it turns out. He's 65 and wears a white beard and a US Marine Corp. cap. We shake hands and he introduces me to his wife and baby. Yeah, you read that right. Along with old Steve is a 30 year old Asian woman and a 2 yr. old Asian baby girl that is his daughter. Steve got one of those mail order brides from China and has a 7 year old and the baby. Sharon, the wife didn't speak enough English to understand, for me anyway.
After looking at the car, Steve told Sharon to go along with me on a test drive and then he added, if I can't understand her English, to just speak to her in Chinese! Well, at that point, all I could think of was number 14, House Special Chicken and my mouth began watering. I'm so stereotypical. Little did I know that either Sharon was either a stunt driver, or the worst driver I'd ever seen. I tightened my seat belt! I told her to make a right at the corner while she veered to the extreme left to make the turn. Through the grace of God, we survived the test drive and that's when Steve tried his best to hammer the price down. I explained that I've had the car for 7 years and I could have sold it many times for less, but I'm sticking to my price. I carefully explained that I'd had the car for that long and only drove it 3000 miles, but repaired everything that it ever needed and it's in really perfect condition now. He left with his Kamikaze wife. (I know that's Japanese).
Steve called today saying that they like to buy my old friend the Buick and he'd be over at about 3 to drop off $200 deposit to hold it until early next week when Sharon's money comes from China. I agreed. At about 2 PM, Steve called to tell me that he ran a Carfax on the car and it showed that it was emission tested in 2004 and not registered since then. I explained that I'd had it Emission tested and still have the original ticket, but it's expired and it will still pass emissions, guaranteed. Well, why wasn't it registered all of those years, he asked? Well, simple. I've had my dealer plate on it, in my garage. Basically, everything he explained to me was confirming what I'd told him and I explained that. I could see that Sharon was the problem. In her Asian confusion, she decided I was trying to cheat her and take advantage of her inability to understand English, somehow. That's when Steve said he'd call me back after discussing it with his charming wife. The call came about 2:45 and by this time I recalled many such sales of vehicles that I'd said, if I knew they were going to be this difficult, I wouldn't have sold them the car to begin with. I actually decided to stop the sale! When Steve called, he said he couldn't talk her into it. I stopped him and explained that it was probably for the best and when a transaction begins like this, it seldom gets better, thanks for trying. I said goodbye.
As I've gotten older, I learned some things from experience and this was a good example of it.