Saturday, November 24, 2007

Dare to be Happy

Yesterday I went to pick up my new 2008 Gecko Green VW Convertible Beetle! And although I should have been a good boy sitting indoors all day studying Verbal Protocols of Reading by Pressley & Afflerbach, the call of my new baby proved mightier by far. We went for a little outing to the park and got to know one another.

Ever since I can remember I have wanted...
  • a green car (I have only had blue, red, or black ones)

  • a convertible (this is my first)

  • to say "Load it up!"

The day has come! I put my order in for this three months ago and have been waiting ever so patiently for it to arrive. Say hello to _________. I don't generally name my cars but if you have any ideas let me know. Maybe something will stick.

It has everything I could think of and even more that I haven't figured out. Leave it to German ingenuity to create a Tiptronic transmission that is an "automatic that offers the option to drive with the race car feel of a manual". You can choose, not that I know what this really means but it is exciting. As the brochure states - It's all about freedom. It has heated this and automatic that. And the convertible boasts a 10 speaker sound system with satellite digital radio service, CD player and MP3 hook-up.

When I was through signing all of the paperwork and finally alone with my car I felt very nervous. Suddenly I was surrounded by bad drivers and menacing pedestrians who were ready to either slam into me or key the car at the next traffic light. To soothe my manic spirit I popped We Ran by Linda Ronstadt into my new system and sang along to Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues. By mile 13 I was over the nerves and looking forward to pulling over to put the top down. Forget about the fact that it was 30 degrees outside - I got me a convertible.

Another aspect of The New Beetle which complements my sensibilities is the whole 'flower power' philosophy Volkswagen promotes with this car. Did you know that they have conducted quantifiable studies which showed that New Beetle drivers "tend to reach out to those around them more than other drivers do?" Well, evidently they have. Or that they also tend to be "really cool, good people who are very connected to the world around them?" The implication is that VW Beetle drivers dare to be happy. What a concept. Me likey.

It is also eco-friendly and heaps better for the environment than the 1996 Chevy Blazer I had been driving. You can see it over my shoulder in the picture below.

As if all of this weren't enough I got a message from Mona today who wrote a tribute to me in her Friday Flash 55 Fiction #2 (Thanks Mona!). I guess the folks at Volkswagen know what they are talking about. I've only had the car one day and already I can feel the love.



Mikey T said...

i can't think of any naming options for the new car other than "MIKEY" ... toss that around a little and see if it works for ya!

(Congrats and enjoy!! and remember there's no better way to break 'er in than a 3,000 drive to LA - where you can comfortably still have the top down this time of year)

Joy Keaton said...

You two look so cute together! Is verrry purty little bug. :)

You could name the car Neely.... I'm just sayin'.

Dumdad said...

That's one cool car. I've always had a soft spot for Beetles (and the Beatles).

What about: Belle?

Belle the Beetle.(That's if it's a she, of course!)

d. chedwick bryant said...

That car looks like a LOT of FUN. can I say you and the car are adorable? I'm sure you two will be very happy together.

I will have to go on itunes to try & find Linda singing
"Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues" ...lovely song

---I started out on burgundy
But soon hit the harder stuff
Everybody said they'd stand behind me
When the game got rough
But the joke was on me
There was nobody even there to call my bluff
I'm going back to New York City
I do believe I've had enough---

d. chedwick bryant said...

If you are going to be listening to Linda a lot in the bug, you could call the car Ronni.

d. chedwick bryant said...

me again...found a website filled with boat names...

car names? not so much--- but you could use one of these actual boat names.

Minnow, Lucky, Freudian Slipper, Teacher's Pet, Frog, Sub-lime, Screamin' Tuesday, Green Louie, Happenstance, or Conspirator.... My pick up truck is named Flynn, but I never call him anything but truck.

Ladron de Basura (a.k.a. Junk Thief) said...

Congrats on the new baby/toy. Too bad it arrived just as the weather is not exactly convertible friendly, but I'm sure it will be fun all the same.

Gary said...

Mikey - If ever I were to drive cross country this would be the time. It is especially tempting knowing that you would be at the end of the journey - but you'd have to come back with me.

Joy - I like Neely but I don't want the car to end up in a dark alley way when all is said and done. does sparkle!

Dumdad - Belle. Does that make me the beast?

Ched - You certainly know your Dylan. I really love the songs he writes but I am not a fan of his per se. Linda also sang "I'll be your Baby Tonight" and "Baby You've Been on my Mind" in 1969 on Hand Sown...Home Grown.

Teacher's Pet - I like that name too.

Gregg - Thanks. I'll give you a ride with the top down when you come visit!

WAT said...

I love the car man. Truly truly great. You more than deserve it! WOOHOO!

I'd name the car Ringo. But that's just me. HAHA.

kimy said...

sweet, sweet, sweet.

screams kermie to me!! cute and green!!

definitely an improvement over a 96 chevy blazer. the environment thanks you for the green car upgrade.

Lynda said...

Hi Gary,

Love the pics of the new baby(car). Since I haven't seen it yet
it gave me a chance to see the finished product from Germany. Who would have thought your new baby was assembled in Germany and adopted by you in the USA!

I have a suggestion for the name. Since she(your car) was born in Germany-it would only be appropriate to name her a German name. How about Gretchen the Green Bug? Thoughts?

Hope you had a good day. The weather was beautiful. Mostly I hope you accomplished all your school work.

Have a Good Week! Say hi to the new baby for me!

Mona said...

WOW! what a car! I love the look & I always think that convertibles are so cool & you can actually feel the freedom as you 'fly' in open space while driving them.

Freedom or Green Peace or Bliss

Reya Mellicker said...

LOVE your new car. I want to go for a ride sometime, please? PLEASE? P-L-E-A-S-E-?????

Here's my friend Donald Engstrom's challenge/prayer:

Do you dare to live in beauty, balance and delight?
See with clear eyes and an open heart?
Do you dare to trust the path unfolding before you?
Will you love beyond all reason?

Dare to be happy, you gorgeous, lively, wonderful man! C'mon!!! I dare you!

lettuce said...

looks like the perfect car for you.
Very cool.

I'd go for Kermit.

ciara said...

congrats on the new car...very cute! hmmm names...maybe something from goblin? or how bout a german version of that grun geist lol ooo, i kinda like dumdad's, but i think bella sounds better.

Scot said...

Beyond Groovy! My first car was a 74 Super Beatle. My mom bought it brand new and I inherited it when I was 16. Still one of the favorite cars I've had. It's in pieces at my sister's house now waiting for her husband to finish restoring it.

I've never named a car... You'll know if one seems right. Every car has its own personality.

Cute picture of you with the car.

Salty Miss Jill said...

The only thing that could make that car even more adorable is you driving. And vice versa. ;)

Hooray for getting what you want and clearly deserve to have!

Scot said...

BTW, saw a brand new Beetle convertable parked next door last night. Made me think of you :)

Joy Keaton said...

LOVE the new banner icon!!!! Ho-Ho-Ho!!!

Pod said...

ha ha! i like kermit too, or colonel bogey.
i hope to see the bottom of letty on the passengers seat for a little burn about over easter....

like the car, i am a little greeen with envy....

Steve said...

I love the car! It's excellent! My Dad owned VWs for years so I have lots of good, fun associations with those cars -- of course, his were the older-model "hippie" Beetles. :)

(And he had a van, too...)

Love the color!

Steve said...

I like Kermit, too. :)

(My word verification is "wwowi," which is what I might say about that car!)

Vanessa said...

Sweet Pea?

Gary said...

Wat - I get it...Ringo...Beatle. Well done! I should have thought of this one myself but I am afraid I am not as clever as clever Wat. (That last sentence was my attempt at Winnie-the-Pooh speak.)

Kimy - Kermie/Kermit seems to be a favorite and I have added it to the final four (see sidebar for my first ever poll). Thanks for the idea.

Lynda - The school work is coming along. I always seem to be just a step ahead of where I need to be but I suppose that is better than a step behind.

Mona - Thanks. I have added "Bliss" to the final four as well. Loving it.

Reya - Of course I will take you out for a spin. However, after reading your tales of bad drivers/confusing roads in DC I shall request that we drive somewhere will less tension. Do I hear 'Road Trip'? BTW - I love the poem/challenge/prayer.

Lettuce - Another vote for Kermit. I think it is the perfect car for me...after so long. (Check out Poddy's comment.)

Ciara - I love the German variation but being one who is not so swift when it comes to languages I am sure I would forget the name before I got out of the driveway. I had better stay with easy to remember ones.

Scot - If your '74 ever gets put back together I am sure it'll be sweet. My friend Joy had one of the original bugs but I am not sure what year that was. The new ones are so different but still as much fun. Thanks for thinking of me. I saw a Mickey Mouse t-shirt on the subway yesterday and thought of you. Ahhh.

Salty - Keep leaving such wonderful, supportive comments and you are going to lose the title "Salty".

Joy - It is fun right? I can't wait to make the Smiley face change according to the season/holiday. AND...thank you for helping me change the favicon thingie thing (whatever it is called).

Poddy - Kermit again. This just might be the way to go although I am kinda/sorta partial to Sweet Pea for some reason.

Steve - I had an interesting word identification yesterday and I think it was for your blog. Could there be hidden messages there that we should be paying more attention to?

Vanessa - Cayne simply said "Sweet Pea" and it took me a minute to gather his meaning. LOL. I like the name. Vote! ;)

kimy said...

kermit and sweet pea are both excellent names - altho I did have to vote for kermit - it's the headlights! the little bug just seems well, kermitty!

but maybe as with cats, cars need three names! 'sweet pea kermit xxx'

kimy said...

p.s. I'm very impressed with you technical saavy-ness will posting a poll!

marxsny said...

I think you really need to go with the consensus here. Unless we lived somewhere in Arkansas or Tennessee I'm not so sure I could go anywhere in anything named "sweet pea".

NY Teacher said...

mr. wellbrock: the letizia's would like to officially place our vote for "Sweet Pea"....that would be 2 votes...actually 3....while we are at it we would like to add a shameless plug for our baby pool >yes we are wagering on our unborn child<

la bellina mammina said...

Love your car - I've always loved the Beetle too. In Italian, a car is a, what about Bella? ;-)

Gary said...

Kimy - I'd love to take credit for being computer savvy (believe me) but the poll is just another new feature from blogger available for all when you customize your homepage. I am thrilled to finally have a reason to use it.

Mark - I had not thought of saying "sweet pea" with a drawl but my people (peeps? on my mother's side)are from West Virginia so maybe it fits.

Cayne and Vanessa - Sweet Pea is in the lead. :) You two are so funny "Wagering on your unborn child" indeed. Well, count me in. I just need to think of the weight/date. I am pretty sure you are having a girl. Any name ideas?
I like Victoria. Let's vote.

Bellina - Bella is great! How did you ever come up with that one? :) Did you cast your vote? Belle is close, no?

la bellina mammina said...

but Belle is French...... while Bella... well, Bella is Bella;-)

Gary said...

Thanks everyone for taking a moment to vote on a name for my car -- my first poll.

Here are the results:

Belle - 3

Bliss - 4

Kermit - 7

Sweet Pea - 12

So, there is a clear winner. Henceforth the bug shall be known as "Sweet Pea".

kimy said...

sweet pea....excellent name - although I started out favoring kermit I do think sweet pea is even better! I'm still so very impressed that you were able to technically accomplish the whole voting thing even with blogger offering it - of course I have yet to investigate it so.....


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