Saturday, May 14, 2005

Unscathed by Friday the 13th

Six weeks, people, six weeks! And it's official--I am starting to get excited about the wedding. Thank goodness, I was starting to worry that planning would overshadow the joy, that my nuptials would just be one big drag--despite the fact that I knew this might be a problem since Martha warns about this constantly in her "Weddings" magazine that I have every issue of since the beginning of time. (Will I still purchase it after I'm a Mrs., I wonder...)


Have you missed Tales of the Car Salesmen? I have. The only stories recently have been the ubiquitous ones, to wit: man comes in to trade in his screaming yellow [name of enormous, overpriced vehicle here] for a new screaming yellow [name of enormous, overpriced vehicle here] since the majority of his monthly incomes goes to servicing his car loan. Does he have a down payment? Nah--how do you think he got into that situation in the first place? Will he consider a more pedestrian (forgive me), or--gasp--used car? Hell no. That's downright unAmerican. And he goes away cursing the salesman for his profiteering ways.

So in place of a Tale, here's a little car sales glossary, for your reading pleasure:

A.C.V. (Actual Cash Value): a real term used for used cars but also the slang term used to make fun of ugly/fat/dumb people. "I think the ACV is a little high on this one."
Be-back: a returning customer
Blow him out: firing a salesman
Chimp: stupid customer
Green Pea: brand new salesman
Grinder: a customer that negotiates the price to the bitter end--or doesn't buy after all
Kink: salesman, manager, or finance guy who will fudge paperwork to make the deal go through
Laydown, home run: a customer who pays the asking price, no negotiation
Lot rat: someone who takes more ups than they should
Old Age Unit, Birthday: cars that have been on the lot so long they're deeply discounted
Pencil: the manager's figures on a deal
Pounder: $1K worth of profit on the deal; ie, a $2,000 deal is a two-pounder
Put you together: a salesman or customer trying to get one over on someone else
Roach, credit criminal: customer who can't get financed or who has bad credit
Rougher than a night in jail: used car in very bad shape
Salesproof: a car that is so ugly it will never leave the lot
Skate, Tonya Harding: a salesman who tries to steal deals from other salesmen
Stroke, Jack: a customer who takes up time, but doesn't buy anything
Third baseman: someone not connected to the deal but is playing devil's
advocate to help their friend buy a car. "The biggest pain in the ass in the car business." M wanted me to be sure to note that.
Throw him under the bus: snitch on a fellow salesman. The tattletale is known as a "bus driver."
Up: fresh customer
Upside down, buried, flipped in your sled: customer owes more on the car loan than the vehicle is worth
Whore out: sell the car cheap to undercut the competition

Favorite saleman motto? "Buyers are liars."

(And yes, they are almost always men.)


OK, so I'm doing this thing now: you know how in every episode of "Sex and the City," the main character, Carrie, is shown writing at her computer? And how, just before they cut to the luminous line skipping across her laptop screen that is that episode's plot, she raises an eyebrow to signal that she's getting to the heart of the matter? That's what I'm doing: raising an eyebrow and nodding my head knowingly when I'm getting to the point, both with work compositions and writing this here blog. Ah, what have I become?


At 11:17 PM, May 14, 2005, Blogger Rebecca said...

I don't know what you've "become" but I know what you are - you're a Writer! (I can name that tune in 2 notes!)

Thanks for the vocabulary list. Every trade has its jargon, and it's always fascinating to me to learn more of this kind of thing. Thanks.


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