QOTD: Could-Would-Should-Did You Buy Back Your Old Car?

In “Kodachrome”, Paul Simon sings of past loves, “Everything looks better in black and white” (Okeh, sometimes he sings “worse” instead of “better”; he says he forgets which he originally wrote…whatever; for the purposes of this post, the lyric is “better”). And it’s true: the human memory isn’t the camcorder it feels like. We magnify our recollections of the good, and we minify our recall of the bad. That’s probably for the best, for otherwise we’d be dragged under by accumulated strife and sadness. Nevertheless, most of us sometimes hanker for the good(?) ol’ days. Sometimes we get a chance to go back, one way or another. Often this winds up to prove unwise and disappointing; that magical playground is nowhere near so giant and awesome as we remembered it, etc.

But with cars it can go either direction, I suppose. One could come face-to-face with all the nuisances and faults one had forgot, and have one’s nose shoved in a steaming pile of past misdeeds and errors…or one could find oneself happily home again (as in this Chev sketch of a few years back, which tears me up every time on account of my own history with a dad and a car).

That could-go-either-way thing is a guess on my part; I’ve never tried it, though the opportunity came round once: I had a “wanna buy it back?” come in from the guy I’d sold my first fully operable car to. It was a ’65 Valiant Custom 200 (the very one in the pic here—a ’65 Dart badged up thusly and built in Ontario for the Canadian market). I won’t go into much detail here; I swear sooner or later I’ll get round to doing my time in the COAL mine. But I was briefly sorely tempted—boy, was I ever! I ran mind-movies of putting right all my wrongs, fixing all those shortcuts that stemmed from upgrade enthusiasm and feature creep. But I don’t have much more spare money to mess with cars now than I did then, and I have a lot less space, a whole lot less time, and a whole hell of a lot less inclination.

So I thanks-but-no-thanksed it. By and by, the new owner got in touch; I was heartened to learn he had plans (and resources, facilities, tools, and knowledge) to refurbish it although it’s “only” a four-door.

How ’bout you? Did/would you ever buy back your old car? Or did/would you Just Say No™? Howe’er it was, did you come to regret your decision?