Today, I took the first step toward becoming a senior citizen. Today, I bought a Buick.
Buick is the brand of the final car you own. A Buick is the car you drive just before the kids have a talk with you and convince you to turn in your keys for your own safety and then follow up that conversation with one during which you help pick a nice nursing home.
The word Buick is derived from a French term that means “a man completely and utterly without sex appeal.” When a man talks to his friends about his Buick, he cannot use the same terms that he used when he spoke of his previous cars, those from his younger days. He no longer uses terms like “sweet ride” or “a burner.” He will refer to his Buick as a “solid, dependable car” and that it is a “good value for the money.”
He tells his new friend Morty, a thirty-year resident of the nursing home, all about his Buick. He shouts into Morty’s hearing aid that his Buick even has ‘navigation GPF’. Morty thinks he said ‘rice pudding’ and a five-minute argument ensues, at the end of which neither the man nor Morty has any idea what started the argument and he tells him again about the ‘navigation GPF’.
The image on the navigation screen never changes because he can’t figure out how to use it. The screen becomes that picture that comes with a new frame that sits on the shelf at Walmart.
When a man finally gets the radio to work, he learns that Buicks cannot play any music recorded after 1979.
When a man buys a Buick, he tells his family that it’s good to buy an American-made car because ‘the Japs bombed Pearl Harbor and we shouldn’t be rewarding them for that by buying their cars.’
There was another person at the dealership who was interested in this solid, dependable car. A blue-haired 78 year-old woman who had obviously mastered the walker and pulled an oxygen tank behind her as if it were a feather. When she tried to make an offer, though, her teeth flew out of her mouth and fell to the floor. I saw an opening and I seized the opportunity. I made my offer and the salesman accepted it but said at that price he could not include the one-year supply of Geritol that comes with every Buick. I was fine with that.
During the ride home, I noticed that people drive too darn fast and the radio seemed loud. I also learned that Buicks come with a warning should you try to drive with just one hand on the wheel. Sensing only one hand, Frank Sinatra’s voice will come from the wheel saying, “You get two hands on that wheel, mister.”
This will take some getting used to, because…wait…what was I talking about?