Car Abuse

I’m ashamed to admit that I wounded my poor faithful Camry!


It may not look like much, but when you zoom in you can see the depth of pain I must have caused it:


I was coming into the parking garage after work on Monday and a large line of cars was waiting to exit, clogging the entrance ramp. One of them scooted back so I could squeeze through. I judged there to be enough room and crept most of the way through the narrow gap, but as I swung my wheel to finish the turn I heard a SSSCCCRRRRAAAAPPPPE!!

The poor girl who had moved over flung her door open to talk to me but I don’t know what she wanted to say, because I just kept going. It was my fault, not hers, and I was too pissed to be nice to her (assuming she would try to apologize) so I drove down and around the next two ramps of the parking garage, seething.

When I reached my space I was pretty relieved to find that the damage was limited to the edge around the back wheel. There’s minimal denting and because of the location on the car, you don’t really see the scrapes when you’re walking by.

But it’s my baby! It’s been my car since senior year of high school, through endless college road trips, like when Dan and I took a week-long camping trip to Colorado and back during the first summer we dated. It even survived four years of snowy Cleveland winters, including the infamous gridlock blizzard of 2010 that turned my 5-mile commute into 3.5 hours of snowy hell. Can you believe that in all that time, I have never once scraped or dented it? (Except the sideview mirror, but that’s a gimme.) Here it is in its pristine condition last summer, before I brought it to California:


At the time I wanted to sell it, and figured the little plastic dinosaur stowed in the armrest by the previous owner’s kid would make a good selling point. It did cause the most comments when I posted the ad, but nobody bit… and it turned out to make more sense to ship it here to California rather than buy a different used car.

I’m so sad it’s not pristine anymore, but maybe a thirteen-year-old car deserves a few battle scars. On the other hand, I don’t want it to rust or flake more where the scrape is. Since it’s old I don’t carry collision insurance (only liability) so any repairs would come out of my pocket. What do you think — would you get it fixed? I’m leaning toward no…


3 thoughts on “Car Abuse

  1. aw, i don’t blame you for being upset, even tho camry looks like such a badass now. scars are sexay.

    my vote is to steer clear of the car repair shops. unless of course you’re in the mood to throw hundreds of dollars into the wind.

    howevah, i’ve done a bit of reading and they say that living by the ocean with all the salt in the air can leave camry susceptible to rust and stuff. and here i was thinking you’d be safe because no winter = no salty roads. durpie durp. duh.

    SO! i suggest you tackle this scratch with touch up paint or nail polish or somethin. think of it as the ultimate DIY challenge. think of it as a craft project…? there are some legit looking tutorials on popular mechanics dot com.

    *as you may or may not recall, i scraped the entire length of my green saturn along the corner of my house on move-in day, sophomore or junior year. and this is from a girl who passed the maneuverability test with flying colors! pfffft. so anyways my point is i feel your pain.

    • Oh now I DO remember the Saturn vs the house incident — haha! I feel a bit less bad now. And yeah I was thinking the same thing as you about no winter = no salt, so that’s disappointing that it’s not gonna work. I could try the DIY repair thing I guess… *sigh* so thanks for the good suggestions. Wanna come help? :)

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