You'll never see my car in a place like this. (Pic via TechCrunch)
A few years ago I'd just come back inside from cleaning the wheels of my new luxury SUV (yes, another car... which means another car story!
I had bought a 2010 Range Rover, a Vogue 5.0 Supercharged like the one in the picture above. While this description probably doesn't mean a lot to you, it actually signifies a veryclever purchase.
But there is a little-known downside... which I'll tell you about in a minute.
As for the cleverness, I bought it 2 years old, as I do many of my cars - so I could avoid the massive first years of depreciation.
This means I get cars that are not perfect and have a little mileage on them. But I save a lot of money. It was a NZ$100,000 saving in my case - can you believe it?
It's supercharged with a b-i-g engine. It's only one and a half seconds slower than my Bentley Continental GT or Aston Martin.
This means we can have a race together and I'll always lose, but also always know I still have the fastest 4 seater in the world (Bentley's boast - not mine) in my garage.
And it's one of the best 4-wheel-drives in the world, goes anywhere. That's important because our country had another massive earthquake yesterday in another city. But if the hill we're on falls around us, we may be able to get out alive, and in comfort no less.
And finally, this SUV just looks good. While that seems to be one of the more useless ways to buy anything, I'm big on aesthetics. I believe that beauty in design is important everywhere.
As you can guess, not much of the advantages actually mean very much in the real world. But this is true of many purchases. I bought this 4x4 because I had wanted one for years and years, and now I could thanks to the lottery.
But this morning, as I went out to attend to it on the driveway, I didn't know it had one majordownside.
It's this. The Rangey (as we owners affectionately call them), produces enough dust from the brakes to cover the planet in a couple of years. The front wheels especially are covered in the dust.
And because I'm mildly obsessive about keeping my stuff clean, each day I have to go out and wipe it all off. I'll tell you why it's not that silly in a moment.
The whole cleaning process is exactly like winning the lottery. You buy the item, my system - it's cheap enough, sure. Then you realise you have to buy tickets each game. Or petrol.
Well, yes, of course you do. But it doesn't make the ticket buying any easier.
Why can't we just buy one set of tickets and be done with it? Why can't we win at the first go and save money?
Well, it's just like buying the best SUV in the world, and finding you have to attend to the dusty wheels after each trip. You just have to.
And this separates the winners from the also-rans... because only people with grit and determination are going to follow through, and clean, or buy tickets each time until they win.
So why am I compelled to wipe the brake dust away each time? Well, apart from making the vehicle look good and cared for, this dust eventually eats into the wheel.
And so after a while it doesn't look so good. Like neglecting to buy lottery tickets - but hey... I'm stating the obvious here.
When you look after a car, a house, a possession... it keeps its value far more than a neglected item.
The person who will eventually buy my un-needed Lexus SUV are going to get the cleanest, most well kept car this side of a cleaning rag.
You have an easier and happier life when you care. I sold another car a while back, and the owner keeps writing to me from up country saying how impressed he was with its condition.
Just like my winners:
Ken, Still shaking from my win, bought your Silver Lotto system last year and have played lotto regularly since, definite small wins and a few no wins, until last night. Checked my ticket online and I have won 1st division $22,236,652.87. Your system works. Regards, Jason