• Richard Scrimger

my part-Scottish heritage


One of my operating principles - a mission statement that underlies many aspects of my behaviour and being - is thrift.  I want to get the most value out of things.  It's not about saving money per se. I'll happily pay more for better-tasting wine or coffee.  But I feel strongly about things being used efficiently.


So to my late aunt's car. (Not going to talk about my aunt this time. Later, maybe.)  That's it up there - same model anyway.  The machine is part of the estate.  What to do about it?


I live downtown and so do my kids. None of us wants the trouble and expense of a car.  My brother, out in Scarborough, has more cars than he can use and his kids don't drive.


Can we sell it?  Here's where the thrift issue comes in.  The car is a mid-price sedan with very low mileage. But it's ten years old and has some minor scrapes and dings. (Another reason my brother doesn't want it.  Aunt Mary Lee didn't park as well as she used to towards the end.)  A dealer would offer a few hundred dollars. I know it's worth ten times more.  Someone who doesn't care about the way the car looks could enjoy it for another 300,00 kms.


I didn't have to think too long or hard to realize that the most thrifty answer was (sigh) for me to take the car.  I don't mind dings and dents. Insurance will cost me about the same as car rentals.  And I can make use of my (until now vacant) parking space.


The kicker is that I am not as good a driver as my late aunt was or my brother is.  The car has a stick shift and a peppy engine.



I foresee hilarity (I've already stalled in the middle of several major intersections, eliciting car horn serenades) and possible trouble. But until I end up in a ditch or blazing inferno, I will be making efficient use of the asset. Triumph of the thrift principle.

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Richard Scrimger | scrimgerr@gmail.com | Toronto, ON, Canada