(Originally written 8/1/2010)
The Sixer and I have been doing a curt dance around each other since I brought it home. I find myself shelved with a fair amount of guilt given its new outdoor living arrangement. I have been lead to believe the until the last couple of years hers was an indoors life. Akin to cats, cars come in a few varieties when it comes to the their preferred living arrangements. Some are indoors only as they or the wild world beyond doors cannot be trusted, while other cars simply endure and show the scars of a life well lived in the driveway. My particular BMW while showing her age appears to have been indoors/retired for its twilight years. Unfortunately (for the BMW at least) the 77 Rabbit lives in the garage as it is more or of a rusty sponge then a vehicle. Besides, the Sixer is 3ft longer than my current garage is deep. So the 6er has only a car cover to protect her while not in use.
Speaking of use, there has been little of it. Make no mistake, the BMW has been solid since its purchase. That is however not to say that it doesn't have needs. Like all things old and German for the coupling of owner and machine to be complete there must be some sacrifice, be it financial or bodily fluid. Being fresh from semi-retirement the BMW needs little (must have been some sort of assisted living affair) but the needs it has are "eccentric", read as expensive and beyond your skill level. It is prudent to point out here that I test drove a 1982 Porsche 911SC before deciding on the BMW, now if the cars were cakes (bear with me, I promise there is a point coming) in the shape of the word "eccentric" the Porsche's would be frosted with uncut cocaine. All that being said the BMW's usage has been mostly of the reluctant type, I think on both our parts. You see the BMW has a bit of mean streak.
Putting aside its penchant to run through 92 octane like it's Keith Richards at a cocaine open bar the BMW likes to give you a scare now and then. And by scare I mean the "hey, you awake? Surprise guard rail!". After the 12 mile jaunt to work my knuckles are in inappropriate shade of pale for never having exceeded 60mph. I'm sure it's just old suspension bushings and a desperate need to have the toe-in corrected on an alignment rack. Unfortunately with this stupid job and the terrible graveyard shift I now work any chance to get the big coupe on the lift is a long shot. So we continue a codependent dance, me filling the cavernous fuel tank with alarmingly frequency and her trying to commit suicide when given the slightest bit of inattention behind the wheel. Sigh.
It's not all been bad. I do enjoy looking at the car when its parked and not main lining Texaco's finest or while it's trying to send me to a Thelma and Louise-esque end. I have been gradually restoring much of the paint which has gone pretty well so far. The interior has come back exceedingly well and the leather as much as can be expected given its age. At least it's a pretty clean place to die unexpectedly.