May 29th, 2007

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marf.

'Twas a long weekend, in more ways than one.

Friday saw me hanging out with Arion for Pirates 3, which was not great, but better than OK. Damned hard to follow, though. Sean was there, and we talked for a bit. That went pretty well.

Skipped the strawberry festival on Sat in favor of packing, which I had mixed feelings about, but eh. Turned out to be a good thing, because I was still feeling pretty tired from the night before. Went up to the bay to visit family and see my little brother (since this was like, the one weekend he was in town). Then went car-shopping on Mon.

>>> Cars

I've decided I can't afford the WRX, so I've been looking at other options. I've made a few notes about them below.
  • Jeep Compass/Patriot
    Surprisingly, it was roomier than the Cherokee. It was very comfortable and had some nice features inside -- optional Bluetooth audio, for instance. Aux-In port optional. Roomy back seat, sat up high. The Patriot also had a built-in 150W inverter. It definitely drove like a Jeep, though. Unimpressive power and soft handling. I fit very well in this car.

  • Mazda 3
    Not particularly memorable. Handled like a normal car.

  • Subaru Impreza Wagon
    Back seat was cramped, and the car just seemed spartan. I'd expect that out of a WRX, but I would've hoped the wagon would've been roomier. Right outside mirror didn't quite point out far enough. Could've used a touch more thigh support, but otherwise fit was OK.

  • Toyota Corolla
    Typical econobox. The version I test-drove was pretty sparse. No Aux-In port available in any model AFAIK. Steering wheel felt way too far away. Back seat was OK.

  • Honda Civic Si
    Nimble and responsive. Stuck to the road quite well and held its own in corners with little noticeable lean. Throttle and steering were pretty responsive, but steering didn't give much useful feedback. Suspension was good. The 6-speed was proportioned fairly well. Wants premium fuel, though. :-/ Unusual (but acceptable) dashboard configuration. Comes standard with a moonroof. Telescoping steering wheel. Fit well, but felt like I was sitting way back in the car. Wasn't quite sure where my nose was. Aux-In port. Steering-wheel audio controls. Back seat was OK -- Dad fit fine.

  • Honda Civic
    Soft handling and acceleration. Mushy suspension. About what you'd expect from a Civic.

Oddly enough... the Civic Si is currently at the top of my list. O.o I had a lot more fun driving that than the Jeep, and from a subjective, emotional standpoint it just "clicked" with me the best. My only major reservations are its front-wheel drive, and its 0-60 (7sec compared to the WRX's 6ish). It handled well in spite of the FWD, however, so I'm giving it a break.

That surprises me, because, well, it's a Civic. When you think Honda Civic, you tend to think "old guy driving back and forth to his job at the DMV every day". But ... that's not how this car drove.

We'll see. I'm still looking around for other cars, but the Si is a pretty strong contender at this stage.

>>> Back at Work...

Anyway, back at work. We've actually started selling the two products I've been working on, and so far it seems like we're doing pretty good. It'll be interesting to see how things go over the next week or so.

-- Des
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