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Sunday, March 27, 2016

Jeepers Creepers, The Jerk Finds Redemption

Ok, here's an IQ test, grab a pencil: First, you must pretend you're a diehard Motor-head. Now, how much would you pay for a well used 4WD "rockhopper" like the one pictured above? 10 grand? 20? 30???

The For Sale sign reads $40,000... firm.  In what country on what planet do people with such disposable incomes now live? Apparently the United Arab Emirates and the United States of America. One would either have to be insanely rich, or richly insane. But it happens all the time, right here in little ol' Moab. 

If I'm honest, I feel the same way about Rv's that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars... only to start depreciating like tube TVs before the ink is dry on the sales contract. Might as well start a campfire with hundred dollar bills. 

That the "Luxury" segment of the Rv industry seems to be thriving is beyond me. "Well look at how cheap gas is now," you say. Give me a break. To my simple mind, if one is willing to spend $300,000 or more on a tricked out quad-slide motorhome, they shouldn't be worried about five dollar per gallon fuel prices, or the pitiful 8 mpg such rigs get. It makes about as much sense as Govie footing the bill for massive billion dollar Stimulus Packages in order to jump start the economy in order to bring in more tax revenue in hopes to pay for the Stimulus Package. What a circle jerk! Then again, I only took Econ 101 in college... "Guns and Butter" basics. Another thing that doesn't make sense to me is buyers who finance big ticket Rvs, "PAYMENTS AS LOW AS 499.99 DOLLARS A MONTH!" It's always followed by pages of small print that says something to the effect of "...for the rest of your freaking life." 

I bought a Jeep Commando just like the yellow one  above, shortly after I moved to Colorado. I cherried it out, rebuild the V8 piece-of-crap engine in my front yard, put a ragtop on it and spent my one day off per week exploring the high country.  They were asking more for these unrestored Commandos than I sold mine for.  
Never the less, every November Goldie is surrounded by deluxe rolling mansions at the Zion River RV Resort, as well as pricey big boy toys that macho men dream about. 

Well good for them. I'm seldom jealous of wealth anymore, tho I do envy people with good health. Sometimes I wonder if I would be tempted, you know, should I win the lottery that I refuse to play (speaking of lighting a campfire with dollar bills, and don't even get me started on vacations to Lost Wages, Nevada). But for "what-if's sake," pretend I inherited a wad from some rich uncle (that I don't have) and could misplace or burn 300 K and never even miss it cause I still have enough money left to stuff a California King Mattress. Would I be at all tempted should I accidentally roll into a Luxury Rv lot, one that used to be an Art Gallery? 

Half out of my Lexus and fully out of my mind before I realize the mistake, "Oh well, might as well have a look around." Might I yield to temptation like I did in Moab, and drive a brand new mansion home? I say NO! No I would not, even if I was filthy rich. But it's difficult to test such a hypothesis without a real and present danger of the outcome happening. Talk is cheap, like when Jimmy Carter was being interviewed by Playboy and after much prodding admitted that he "lusted in his heart," but never with his body. Like that's not a sin? Might as well "do it in the road" for all to see, according to the bible. Anyway, he wouldn't be the first President, and we certainly know he wasn't the last.   

Bobbie and I spent over 3 hours walking the Mad, Mad, Mad World of Moab. Chrysler/Jeep had vehicles and reps there, mostly pretty blonde gals like at the big car shows. They handed out info and showed off their big "headlights," as well as a few "Concept Vehicles."

As we continued our cruise up Main Street, we passed the Ford dealership. Just out of curiosity, mind you, I went over to check the sticker price on a new Ford 4X4, short-bed, extended cab F350... just like Petroleous Rex, now pretty much retired and aging gracefully in his garage. As if the price of the Boy Toy in the lead photo wasn't justification and redemption enough for my purchase of a full suspension mountain bike (yes, in spite of all the Joy and Satisfaction it brings to my life, I still try to "Justify" the impulsive meltdown that resulted in a new bike and a new computer, followed by new tires on Sue Bee), the "sticker" on the F350 did the trick. Are you kidding me? $70,000 bucks for a new pickup? 

I was off the hook. I shall keep my vow to Bobbie, to never buy another truck and that she can bury me in Pet Rex.  Angels soared. A choir rose in falsetto chorus. The sun was eclipsed by the Moon in my eyes and the Alter called. I found salvation, of all places at the Ford Dealership in Moab. My conscience was wiped clean; Jesus came into my heart and vanquished all Guilt and buyer's remorse. "Redemption is mine," thus sayeth my Lord. 
"Go, my son, and sin no more!" 
"I shall, my Lord. I haveth everything I need!

Cut to scene with Steve Martin as Navin R. Johnson in "The Jerk:"

Well I'm gonna to go then! And I don't need any of this. I don't need this stuff, and I don't need *you*. I don't need anything. Except this. (picks up an ashtray) And that's the only thing I need is *this*. I don't need this or this. Just this ashtray... And this paddle game. - The ashtray and the paddle game and that's all I need... And this remote control. - The ashtray, the paddle game, and the remote control, and that's all I need... And these matches. - The ashtray, and these matches, and the remote control, and the paddle ball... And this lamp. - The ashtray, this paddle game, and the remote control, and the lamp, and that's all *I* need. And that's *all* I need too. I don't need one other thing, not one... I need this. - The paddle game and the chair, and the remote control, and the matches for sure. Well what are you looking at? What do you think I'm some kind of a jerk or something! - And this. That's all I need. The ashtray, the remote control, the paddle game, and this magazine, and the chair. And I don't need one other thing, except my dog, Shithead (He growls). 
Ok, I don't need my dog, Shithead... 

Bobbie oogles her dream machine. "Would I look Phat in this Jeep?"

Wouldn't my new bike would look good hanging off the back of this Jeep.

Wow, a ragtop pickup truck

So much for "Tread Lightly"

love the classics... 


  1. You're not the only who feels this way, I've been talking Wayne down off the Luxury RV ledge for years now. I keep trying to tell him that they wear out a lot quicker than a regular home (for about the same price!) and unlike a real home will be worth next to nothing when you want to sell and start all over again. We bought the fifth wheel used for under 30K and our truck used for under 40k and both will be worth something when we trade them in. Just last week he was talking about upgrading again and one of his arguments is that we won't have to stop when I need to use the bathroom! Of course in 5 years when we are full timers how often are we driving long distances? He also thinks I would look phat in a Jeep and that is his argument for us to get one to tow behind our new Class A. It's a good thing one of us is level headed! Though after dealing with my tent filling with campfire smoke last night and dragging it all around the campground I am seriously considering doing some shopping for a used Scamp with windows that keep the smoke out of my asthmatic lungs...

  2. As my 2004 truck gets worn badly at 238000 miles, I look at less old trucks with hope for reasonable replacement. So far it looks like I will just have to do repairs on the current truck. Engine rebuild and tranny rebuild $15000. Used equivalent replacement $37000. New equivalent replacement $53000. SSA doesn't cover those big numbers.

  3. Everyone brings their rigs to Moab during Jeep Safari and puts high prices on them hoping for a sucker. Most go home unsold.

    The car/pickup industry is in a bubble, as is housing (again). Easy credit allows more people to buy, driving demand and thus prices up. There are signs it's getting ready to pop - more than 1/3 of car loans are made to subprime borrowers who really can't afford those big monthly payments. I have a friend who wants to retire and can't because her pickup payment is over $500/month. She has a couple of years to go to work at a job she hates all because of that truck (as she puts it...).

  4. As you know, Mark, we are solidly in your camp. We worry more about good health these days than riches. And we've had both. Without the details of how we're barely holding on to one, and having lost most of the other, like your Goldie, we have our "Hopper" Bounder. At 26 years of age, it's a one-owner. We've upgraded and remodeled it. And that combined with the under 40,000 mile chassis, gets us there in our definition of comfort. At the "Q" in January, ours was the oldest rig of our group. Mixed in with $300,000-$500,000 "condos". We had just as much fun as they did WITHOUT the payments. We DO have a Jeep Liberty. For $4750 WITH Roadmaster tow setup, it's the best Jeep we've ever had. That's $4750. There are no zeros missing.

  5. Who needs all that "stuff"? Although Bill would be drooling over the ragtop Jeep pickup he Dreams of owning. Moab is just a little too over the top town for me. But then Kanab... :(

  6. It might just be me but I think Bobbie was sneaking a peak at the guy on the other side of the jeep. Love the eye candy but have no desire for one of them. I still kinda think I would like a class A but keep it to a 15 year old Foretravel or thereabouts. Cause most of the new stuff isn't made all that well.

    Someone we met was looking at a 1,500,000 class A and one of the cabinet doors came off in their hand.


  7. I think I just heard an "Amen!" .

  8. Yep we like you our 17 year old coach and 14 year old car, work perfect for us.
    Just keep fixing them at least they paid for and work quite well.But I do like looking at the classics.

  9. Can you believe the price of pickups????? After we bought the bus, we needed a new towed vehicle. Sticker on the half ton gas pickup was close to sticker on the previous diesel one ton. Something very bad happened to pickup prices in the intervening years. I'm really hoping we never have to replace the bus or the pickup - they all cost too damn much. Plus the new RVs don't have any storage. You can have a giant RV, but you gotta drive it naked and hungry because there's no storage.

  10. We bought a big 5th wheel Raptor and it is gigantic! We bought it used for less than what the little 19' pull behind trailers cost. Well it is just too big but right now it is home for hubby who is working in Texas so we are glad we bought it but for RV fun we will just keep the 22' we already had and it will be just fine. As for a jeep......well when we were in beautiful Ouray last time we rented a Razor and had awesome fun for a day...........would not want to buy one, no way, nohow as we would have to make payments, upkeep and in the end when we want to go again we can rent another one that will be brand new and has all the current bells and whistles. Some people have more money than sense. Oh and yes.............in the senior years good health is way more important than money!!!!!!!!

  11. Who's the jerk? Like 4 digits for a bike is good deal.

    1. I agree!!! But what's a "Jerk" to do? Rationalize, baby, rationalize.
      I welcome criticism on the BCB, so thanks for your comment. However, kindly have the balls to sign you name next time or I will delete your ass.
      Have a nice day, Anon.

  12. $70 Grand for a pickup you can pay more. A guy at my work is looking at the cobra f-150 at a cool $90 thou.

  13. And I've still got my like new 2006 cummins one ton dually truck sitting under the carport waiting on a trailer to drag. Paid for and actually appreciating in price. Only has 9600 miles on it. Gets driven and washed once a month Whether it needs it or not. Was thinking about selling it then I priced a new one and almost collapsed!!

  14. Love the irreverence but you are hardly a jerk. That's wisdom you are preachin'. Health is wealth of the only important kind. Our class A is now 12 years old and was 6 when we adopted her. She rolls along just fine for our full timing life. With you all the way on this topic.

  15. I stopped in at the Ford dealership in Moab last September to ask about an oil change for my F-150 eco-boost. The kid said $80. I told him that was absurd and his response was "Hey, this is a tourist town, it cost your more." I came back to Ohio and got my oil changed for $29 (with coupon) at my local ford dealership. Thanks for all of the Jeep photos. I see Jeep had their concept vehicles there.

  16. i have a prevost moter home liberty conversion 1997 we paid 800,000 for but we worked very hard for our money ,and i think your bike may have put as large of a dent in your finaces as my liberty

  17. And the paradox and "relativity" is not lost on me. Reminds me of the poor widow's story in the Bible:
    "As Jesus looked up he saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. “Truly I tell you,” Jesus said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had...”
    The only way we will know if I'm a hypocrite is if I win the lotto... which I don't play. But should I come into a wad of money (not likely), an RV dealership would be a dangerous place for me to be :). It's easy to be above the fray when you don't play...
    Enjoy your Prevost. My cousin had one for a while, got it from a famous Country and Western artist who put everything you could ever dream inside. I did lust in my heart for sure.

  18. thank you mark but to show you we are not crazy mine jeep only cost 4500.00

  19. Don't know if you see commends on past posts, but I do have to say our 11 old rv works just fine. However, if I got that windfall, I feel I would succumb to buying a brand new shiny rv. Then become afraid to take it anywhere! Ref your bike purchase, I'm parked next to a guy who has a $10k bike. Apparently the same model that was used to win the 2014 Tour de France. However he's not just a pretender, he's is in fantastic shape and competes regularly. Over and out.


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