Maxi The Van: Why You Should Never Underestimate The Value of An Ugly Car!

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Have you ever been in love with ugly before? Maybe it was a three legged, one eyed dog named Roscoe. Or was it your first house? The one with the orange carpet, gold paneling, and red bathroom? What about a car? Have you ever fallen for an ugly car? Is it even possible to fall in love with an ugly ole beater? Well, I’m here to say yes!

Most guys love fast sports cars that you drive with the top down while wearing sunglasses, or big manly trucks that you can only drive while wearing a flannel shirt. Then there are those renaissance guys who like to rebuild the oldies that they drove in high school and proposed to their wife in.

But me? Ha, I’m a man with six kids who writes a blog read mostly by women. Not exactly typical. So when it comes to cars, why should I stray away from my not so norm? When it comes to cars, I don’t need sleek and sexy, or big and brawny Instead I need just three things:

  • It must be paid for (cash up front, baby)
  • It needs to be comfortable (working air-conditioner)
  • Finally, it needs to be reliable! It can’t just leave me standing on the side of the road based on some sort of whim or minor disagreement.

Blind Dating

Buying a used car is a lot like going out on a blind date and then deciding to marry him or her, on the spot. At first, you’re just happy to be married. Then, after a while, you find out that s/he squeezes the toothpaste in the middle and hangs the toilet paper backwards. It’s not bad enough to want a divorce, but you aren’t madly in love anymore either..

Sometimes you get lucky and find a car like my Maxi. Considering she got fired from her previous gig, it wasn’t likely that she be the car of my dreams. In the car dating world, Maxi had a disadvantage. She wasn’t a super sexy roadster, nor was she a handsome head turning pickup. Heck, Maxi wasn’t even a man shaming, turn in your man-card, minivan.

Nope! Maxi the van had a dented and scarred up roof and peeling paint. On the outside, she was not exactly the type of car you would marry after the first date, but on the inside, she had a heart of gold.

Like any proud red-blooded car owning man, I have lots of pictures of my ride. So, with out further ado. I present to you:

Maxi the Van!

Maxi started out in 2007 working for Metro Star here in Houston.  She most likely shuttled people to and from the airport.  Until one day….

Maxi had an unfortunate incident, most likely in the parking parking garage at the airport.

We are not sure exactly what happened to Maxi, but my guess is that a driver miscalculated her height and wedged her underneath the concrete roof at the airport parking garage.

Maxi also had damage to the seal around her windshield in the incident, which resulted in water leaking through the roof into the cup holders and onto the driver’s lap, every time that it rained……It rains here very often.

Nothing a little Gorilla Tape can’t handle

Through no fault of her own, Maxi ended up losing her job with Star Metro even though she had less than 90,000 miles on her.  She was sold at auction to a dealer. We bought her in February of 2012 for $10,000 cash.  Which is approximately what you would pay now, for a clean 2007 Chevy 2500 Express Passenger Van, seven years later.  All because of a scratch and a leak.

Maxi also has that awesome Chevy white paint.  You know, the one you notice peeling off of every white Chevy van on the road!

Another thing that you can count on when you have an 12 yr. old van and six children is the inexplicable broken door handle.

Eventually, I will pick up a couple of cans of white spray paint and cover up all of the bald spots before they become too rusty.  I will also need to replace the front windshield instead of using Gorilla Tape to keep the water out. The door handle, well, we did try to glue it back on, but it didn’t work.  I guess we will just live with it.

Never Judge A Book By It’s Cover

Yes, Maxi the Van is ugly.  To make it worse, she came with a backup beeper that ensures everyone will get a good look at us in our ugly van.  If I was concerned about image, that might be a problem. But I’m not and it’s isn’t.

Maxi the Van is Loaded With Value

  • Maxi the Van comes with bucket seats and a walk through interior which allows for Sky Marshal Carrie to go back and silence bickering passengers.
  • The A/C is super effective! In fact, it get’s too cold for the kids in the back.  Yeah, keep up that bickering kids!
  • Kids can really stretch out during long trips.

Maxi also comes with a built in trash receptacle that you never have to empty. Gross!

Interestingly, it is disguised to look like a broken cup holder.

Finally, Maxi the Van comes with a portable hand held rear view mirror that one of my kids so graciously modified from a standard window mounted unit.

Yes, Maxi is a homely vehicle. But I haven’t had a car payment in 7 years. We have replaced the brakes and added a transmission cooler for towing our Trailer “Hernando” but we have never had a major repair. The engine still runs, the A/C still cools, and Sky Marshal Carrie can still zip to the back of ole Maxi when she needs to assist a passenger with their luggage………or attitude!

Here’s to several more years with good ole Maxi!


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Brian at Daddy Go To Timeout

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