Prius

This has been an eventful day: a raid on the Ferry Plaza Farmers Market, where in addition to spectacular nectarines, cherries, dead-ripe Brandywines, some fine chèvre, and other delicious items, I picked up a really lovely arrangement of five different species of Lithopsmooning me from an oval pot, one of which is thrusting forth something I’m hoping will be a blossom; the posting of improved text and new pics taken by Al for the “Italian Butter Beans” and “The Pie” recipes; and the acquisition of a bluish-gray Toyota Prius. It was either that or that new Cadillac pickup truck, which I just noticed that they’re marketing as an SUT (sic). That thing sure does fire my imagination, but I couldn’t write a check for it like I could the Prius and would have been too embarrassed to go crawling to USAA for money so soon.

Note: I’m afraid to assume that everyone understands that I’m being ironic in that last sentence. Yes, I did put almost everything into a trust for Becky; but no, I find that SUT disgusting on several levels simultaneously.

And now, some vehicular observations:

After an evening curled up with the owner’s manual, it occurred to me that this fourth vehicle I’ve ever bought is the first vehicle I’ve had that would just as soon electrocute me on the spot were I so foolish as to 1) open the hood and 2) actually touch anything inside there. I am hoping, though, to risk number 1 above to see whether I’ll be able to distinguish the engine from the motor. I mean, the last time I looked under a hood, cars had carburetors.

And speaking of electricity, it is so much fun to roll downhill and watch the little readout to see how much electricity I’m generating although I can easily see that since this is far more entertaining than television, it presents an obvious hazard to persons and objects in my path.

I also found myself sitting there at a red light and so enraptured, marveling at the engine’s cleverness in turning itself off since it was not being used, that I failed to press the accelerator when the light turned green, presenting an obvious hazard to myself from the vehicles in whose path I sat.

This morning, I took a quick look to see whether my new car was still sitting at the curb, since I did not know whether I had accidentally set the theft-prevention system when I parked the car yesterday afternoon. Of course, I’m being an alarmist, but I’m also concerned whether the vehicle will start today, as, according to the owner’s manual there are abundant opportunities to run down the BATTERY (as opposed to that wimpy little 12 volt lowercase battery still found in so many vehicles) by leaving various switches and stuff in the wrong position.

Finally, seeking guilt, I just realized that I can rightly be accused of conspicuous non-consumption. And that if I wish to remain alive very long at all, I must make absolutely certain that when, generating electricity with my motor, I glide smoothly to a stop at a red light beside a gigantic, throbbing Escalade and my cute little engine primly shuts itself off for the duration of the stop, I must make every effort to arrange my features into an expression of admiration tinged with envy if I even glance at the obscenity at my side. And most particularly, I must never ever allow my gaze to linger, however briefly, on its enormous exhaust pipe.

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