Friday, February 28, 2014

Sie liebt dich, JA JA JA JA!

I got a few minutes last week and began to write this post and at some point it all got deleted. Behold, the dangers of blogging on your phone. But have no fear, I'm on a laptop this time.

Sometimes I talk about my job here. OK lets be honest, it's probably every other post. But that's because my job is pretty awesome. But often it gets to be a demanding. Very demanding. Like wake up, go to work, go home and go to sleep, rinse, repeat kind of demanding. For weeks on end. Or months. In the past 3 months I've done almost nothing on my Falcon but it hasn't been for lack of desire.

But even in the heaviest "workin for the man / corporate 'merica" storms which in my case throw down lightning bolts of Japanese insanity work ethic there are occasional breaks in the clouds. My break was only 24 hours long but her name was Gertrude Carerra S.

My coworker Alex who usually thinks I'm a little off my rocker (I'm not saying he's wrong... but some day I WILL hold the record for the world's fastest shopping cart!) didn't bother to ask me if I'd like to evaluate the Porsche because that is a stupid question. It's like asking Rob Ford if he'd like some cocaine pancakes. You already know the answer.

When my turn to take Ferdinand's granddaughter on a hot date, I only worked a half day, quitting after 12 hours in my beige walled palace. I slipped into the leather seat and my first though was "this thing smellls like auto show." It may be what other people call new car smell, but I'm convinced that auto show is stronger and better. I inserted the key into the lock on the left side of the steering wheel. When I turned the key and the 3.8L flat six barked at me as a warning just like my roommate's pup when I come late at night (not the one that pees every time she sees me, that's the other roommate's pup). 

I AM in heaven!
This kind of happiness you can't keep to yourself, so I had to pick someone to come along. I have a friend named Steve. He's a lover of fancy things. He's got a pair of shoes that cost more than all four of Grace's tires. Steve likes cars too, and particularly German ones. So I texted Steve to inform him that tonight was his lucky night. 

Mickey Mouse meets his match.
I won't print what followed. So instead, I brought Vaughn along. He's my roommate and you've all met him here previously. I thought it only fitting that I take him on a ride as repayment since he'd taken me for a code brown ride at one point that involved the two of us looking at oncoming headlights on a southern California freeway.

Vaughn said that as we got on the freeway he watched the lateral G-meter and it held about .9G. For those who aren't familiar with this measurement, 1G is what your butt cheeks are being subjected to right now as you sit in your seat in front of the google machine. Now imagine if said butt cheeks were glued to the bottom of your seat, and the bottom of your seat were glued to that wall over there. Now you have to hold your entire upper body up, perpendicular to the wall. 
Oooh I like your sports caARE YOU TRYING TO KILL ME?!
Yeah, like that. I headed to the nearest canyon road, about 10-15 miles from my house. I learned something there that you can't learn many other places with many other cars. There are performance cars, like my Subaru Legacy GT, or the Mustang or Camaro or your little Civic on steriods. They can be fast. But something like a 911 Carrera S is on a different level. The ablilty to go into corners with speed like that, and to exceed 1G in a corner, and then pull out of that corner with more acceleration than your new Camaro can muster in a straight line... that's something else. I began to see why people spend over $130K on these stupid toys. In most cases it's a terribly stupid thing to do, but I see why people do it. 

Gertrude has a dirty secret. She's an automatic. As a staunch lover of manual transmissions, I didn't know if I could fully accept a car that had usurped my responsibility to select the proper gear ratio. But after ripping up and down that canyon (in a responsible, law abiding manner, of course) I grew tolerant, even accepting of the Porsche Doppel Kupplung Getreiebe, AKA automatic transmission. Its like Porsche found a way to tap into my brain and choose the right gear before I could actually formulate my thought. Shifts were faster than little Carol Ann from Oregon Trail running out to the bushes as dysentery strikes.  

The whole reason any kid played this game was to go
hunting and kill 23065lbs of buffalo. "Edutainment" my arse!
My one criticism of the PDK system is that I hated the shifter buttons. You can see one in the photo above. I would have much preferred a traditional flappy paddle. And while we are criticizing I'll make my other complaints. This car had a defective driver's window, so the wind noise reminded me of driving my 1988 Ranger.  I'm sure I'll get ribbed for this one, but coming out of some corners I felt that she lacked torque. You may ask, how can a 3200 pound car with 400 hp and 325 lb-ft lack torque? I suppose that when all other parts of the car set the bar that high, it can be easy to ever so slightly miss the target. Am I being overly nitpicky? Absolutely. But that's what I do, I'm an evaluation engineer.

When I got home and got out of the car, my legs were shaky, like I had just finished squatting Oprah, three sets of ten. And the next morning I felt it too, my legs were stiff and sore. I hadn't realized it, but I had been so tense from the sheer terror that that car produces along with simply trying to keep from flying out the side window, that my legs had received a legitimate workout. This was a once in a lifetime experience which I'll always remember. On second thought, perhaps I should plan to make this not a once in a lifetime experience. Oh yeah, I almost forgot the other dirty secret. She's a cabriolet. That's right, I drove a convertible Beetle. And I liked it.