Do You Speak Used?
by Eric Peters
"Used," of course, is the international language of the used car classified
ads. Those fluent in Used can decipher the critical modifers and clauses that
sellers use to convey subtle details about the condition of the vehicle
they're trying to sell -- or unload, as the case may be.
Those who don't speak Used can get into real trouble -- just like the
ignorant Americano who doesn't know the difference between "Hombres" and
"Senoritas" when it's time to hit the bathroom South of the border.
Here, then, is a practical guide to Used:
"Must see to appreciate" -- What a brutal life this car has suffered.
"Runs real strong" -- For a car with more miles on it than Elizabeth Taylor.
"Program car" -- Former media test car subjected to more repeated floggings
than a prisoner at Gitmo.
"Clean" -- Recenty washed by sulky teenager
"Concours condition" -- Waxed (and dipped in Armor All) by sulky teenager.
"Rebuilt engine" -- New spark plugs and a can of "Motor Honey."
"Body solid" -- The car needs a new engine or transmission.
"Illness forces sale" -- I'm really sick of this car.
"Selling for a friend" -- The car was bought at a fleabag auction and the
seller hopes to turn a fast buck by selling it to you for $1,000 more than he
paid for it.
"A true classic" -- An old, tired, high-mile car one step away from the
"Loaded" -- The engine's shot, but the car has AC and power windows.
"Need a little work" -- Bring a tow truck.
73 MG Midget
Firstly you must always implicitly obey orders, without attempting to form
any opinion of your own regarding their propriety. Secondly, you must consider
every man your enemy who speaks ill of your king; and thirdly you must hate
a Frenchman as you hate the devil._ Horatio Nelson_