And the tension builds…

This is the second post in The Big Swap. Originally posted on Posterous, which has since been shut down.

No, I haven’t made the trade yet. (More about that later.) But an interesting twist has been added to the story…Last night on the way home from work, my car started acting funny. When I say “started”, I really mean it continued acting funny, but in a bigger way. This car is fifteen years old, and like most teenagers, it hesitates to pull it’s own weight. It does things that make me shake my head in bewilderment and say things which had best go unrepeated.

This was different though. Up until this time, the old Neon had complained and whined her way through my demands and constant nagging. A little bit of oil every now and then and some veiled threats had been enough coercion to keep her rolling merrily along. But this time, she seemed to be giving up altogether. There was a strange knocking noise coming from the engine, and stepping on the gas felt something like squishing an over-sized grape. I’m no mechanic, but I considered the knocking a very bad sign, and stepping on Fruity Pedals wasn’t my idea of a well-behaved car. It was about this time that John Mayer started singing “Neon, neon / who knows how long, how long, how long / she can go before she burns away”. Or he would have, if I had a radio.

I nursed, pleaded and cajoled (whatever that is) her to a friend’s house, where we put our heads together and came up with blocks. I left the car there for the night to let her think about what she had done. This morning I dug around in the car and on the internet until I found the problems – there were more than one. Next, I get the joy of replacing spark plug seals.

With all the excitement, I haven’t forgotten about the competition. In fact, being the winner is more urgent than ever; if I move fast enough, I might get a new car before my little princess of a Neon moves out permanently. Oh, the joys of parenting. Maybe I should be trading for repair work.

Behind the scenes, I’ve been working on getting a trade accomplished. Thanks to my part of the trade being an investment of time, it’s not as easy as it seemed at first… I’d compare it to playing Call of Duty non-stop for two days. In other words, doable, but requires some dedication. Watch for an update soon! -Isaac

Read the next post: Trade 1: in which Pooh Bear meets the Shrink-ray