Archive for February, 2009

Car Shopping

Due to some recent changes in my family structure, I have decided to go ahead and get a more cost-effective mode of transportation — both in the sense of environment (gas and fuel efficiency) and to save money on monthly payments.

We currently own a Kia Sorento. A nice 4×4 SUV that has helped us in patches before, especially in snow. But I need something that will keep my costs low.

I’ve been doing some shopping, and I keep getting signs everywhere. It’s like the great spirit up there is telling me to get this or get that. Here’s what I have my eyes on…

I’ve been a Volkswagen fan my whole life. Call it bias, because for as long as I can remember, my mom has always driven a Jetta. In fact, I recall she had a Jetta with nearly 180,000 miles on it in only six years. That’s what you get for being a single mom driving her three kids to practices.

Mom now has a 2006 Jetta GLI Turbo. Umm, I think she’s in her mid life crisis. It’s sporty, plus it’s red. I guess she wanted some vroom.

Me? No GLI Turbo. But I’m definitely keeping my eyes open at the VW Rabbit and Jetta.


I’m interested in the Rabbit because I checked out Consumer Reports for rankings, fuel efficiencies, average prices, and manual transmission — yes, I’m looking for a stick.

The Rabbit gives me good mileage, if I recall, 24/29 city/highway. I don’t need a big car. It’ll serve me well.

Plus I can get a bike/ski rack on top. That’s something I have on the Kia SUV right now that I need to transfer to the new car.

I’m also interested in the Jetta. I used to own a VW Cabrio. A very nice black car, with European measuremens (KPM, litre, etc.) on the dashboard. vw-cabrio

Then in 1999 an idiot hit me while I was waiting in line for a ticket at a toll booth. That idiot claimed to not have seen me, and her crash resuled in a chain reaction. Four cars, and mine was totalled.

A few months later, I got a VW Jetta.


It was a nice maroon car.

Of course, I was still under 25 and in the eyes of insurance companies, I was still a risky driver. I had hit a car that was driving through a construction lane. Still cited for it. I also knocked over a parked motorcycle (don’t ask). So I had to give up the car. Mom couldn’t pay my insurance.

The MPG for a Jetta is pretty decent, plus cost-wise, it’s a good investment.

So, I’ve gotten my eyes on a Rabbit or a Jetta. Anything from 2004 to 2008 will do!

But I’m not going to stop there. I also like these cars:

A Toyota Matrix.

toyotamatrixFriends of mine (Barry and Josh) own one. My brother is seriously thinking of getting one too. The Matrix has the sporty look I’m looking for, plenty of space, reasonable costs, and good fuel efficiency.

Of course, I must have manual transmission.

Again, the Matrix has good fuel economy and is not expensive.

Oh yeah, I’m also interested in a Mazda3


Yep, eeringly similar to the Matrix and the Rabbit. I guess I’m sucker for hatchbacks. I need something that might fit a bicycle through the back. A sedan won’t do. Like the other cars above, the Mazda3 has good fuel efficiency and is reasonably priced.

A lesser part of me is interested in a Subaru Forester.


Hey, how can you not imagine having this, with the bikes on the back or the top rack, with a kayak, and Colin next to it?

Aha…decisions, decisions, decisions. The sooner, the better!


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Yesterday I got into an argument with my mom about the captions on television shows.

First — let me tell you — my mom has and will always be an advocate for deaf and hard of hearing people.

But I think she’s overreacting about this, unless I’m wrong?

We all know that captions do not accurately transcribe what is being said, whether it is live or scripted.

That pisses my mom off so much she gets angry when she hears and sees otherwise.

For me, I don’t care. I could care less that the captions are wrong. The way I view it, I get my information from multiple sources, including the Internet. So, I just roll my eyes if I see something said (through reading lips on the TV) and see the captions say something else.

Are inaccurate captions a bothersome thing for you? Or am I correct in thinking my mom may be overreacting?

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Last June while I was visiting family in NY and Alli was at her MFA orientation, Leah apparently did something mischievous.

Go ahead and watch the video. It’s 4 minutes, 40 seconds long but  worth it…especially watch the last few seconds of the video to make sure you don’t miss it!

The Undiscovered Leah from Chris Kaftan on Vimeo.

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