Driving my freshly restored 1957 Beetle around, I get stopped by people often. The most common question has to be "What year is it?". Many people compliment me and go on to tell me about "the one they had". Some ask if I am selling it.
I am not.
But I had given some thought to what I have put into the car, and how I would have to ask for all of that time and effort back, before I would "sell" it to someone.
some time a wrote up a fictitious reply that I might use…
"Well, sure it is for sale, everything has it’s price"
"How much are you asking?"
"Well, it’ll cost you $11,312 in cash, plus you’ll need to give me 8 years of your spare time, roughly 6 hours per week, I’d say. After that there is another 2 hours per week of time in front of the PC, surfing vendor sites and asking questions on newsgroups. Then I’ll need another $233.17 for long distance phone charges to parts suppliers and private sellers, gas to and from VW shows, parts I broke and wrong parts that I ordered (but you can have those, I saved them). You will also need to fix the broken window in the garage and assorted other damage from flying tools. You will have to get the acetone burns off the kitchen table and those grease stains off the new family room carpet (near the fireplace)."
"Then you will need to somehow get my kids to unlearn six or seven swear words that they are starting to repeat when they think I’m not around, and then you will need to pay my wife. You will owe her about 77 nights renting a movie and sitting on the couch (watching but not listening to the movie, gossiping about friends instead), 14 ‘quiet’ dinners after the kids are in bed and some kind of compensation to her for the time we drove halfway across Maryland on the way back from my parents after Christmas to find that guy selling the set of barely-worn, wide whitewall Firestone 5.60x15s (the time the kids were screaming after being in the car for 12 hours and I refused to go straight home; ask her, she’ll remember). You will need to paint the house and take my kids to the McDonalds Playplace about 23 times. You need to shoot hoops with my son for about 7 hours total and go look at least 44 drawings that my daughter made.
"You will also have to call at least a dozen friends of ours and re-arrange the dinners and cookouts we missed (I think one event was actually a wedding, you may need a suit). And you will have to go to my in-laws on 38 Sunday afternoons for dinner (food is actually pretty good though). You probably should also apologize to my neighbors for the times I was running the compressor well past midnight."
"You will have to replace roughly 8 square inches of skin and sub-dermal tissue on my body, mostly from my hands, but one big chunk right above my eye. At least one skin graft for a severe post-welding burn will be needed. You need to re-pay 3 of my friends somehow for favors involving sweating and swearing, and loan them at least 6 of your tools, 2 of them you may never see again. I’ll need 19 T-shirts, 2 pairs of jeans, 5 pairs of shorts and one nice collared polo shirt (shouldn’t have been working in that one anyway)".
need to come by and disassemble the ‘cold storage’ bay that I made for
the car across the back of the garage, and take down the rack above the
garage door that is used to store the ‘show’ wheels off season. You’ll
have to explain to my kids that they can now ride their bikes in
the garage again and the garage doors can be opened when daddy’s car is
out of the storage space and their friend’s are over."
"Still interested? Let me know. If you are, I’ll stop on the way home and buy the paint for the house."