Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Am...
Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Am...
Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Am...
Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Am...
Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Am...
Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Am...
Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Am...
Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Am...
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Teresa Fritschi, chapter 3 of "all that i need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window"

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For anyone that loves their vintage car with near obsessive passion, especially for those who understand the mystique of a Saabs and wouldn't trade the idiosyncrasies of owning one for anything in the world - this chapter is especially for you! I hope you'll buy my little book about gratitude and happiness and share this link with everyone you know. You can also find the 1st chapter here on SlideShare. Enjoy.

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Teresa Fritschi, chapter 3 of "all that i need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window"

  1. 1. Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Amazonhttp://amzn.to/v1779t (print and Kindle), Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/yFkx9v and Lulu (Nook and iPad) http://bit.ly/rK9SyYPublished 2011 by Teresa FritschiAll That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window, Copyright © 2011 by Teresa A. Fritschi. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrievalsystem, transmitted in any form or by any means including digital, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, facsimile or conveyed via the Internet or a Website without prior written permission of thepublisher; one exception to be made in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and articles.Library of Congress Cataloguing-in-Publication-Data(application being processed)Fritschi, Teresa A, 1961–All That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window by Teresa A. FritschiPhilosophy 2. Self-help 3. Memoir 4. Travel-log 5. Meditations on relevance –aging
  2. 2. Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Amazonhttp://amzn.to/v1779t (print and Kindle), Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/yFkx9v and Lulu (Nook and iPad) http://bit.ly/rK9SyY 3. DuncanIt was midday on the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend 2004. I was enjoying a day trip to Westport, Connecticut, with Patricia, a very deargirlfriend from college. The sky was blue, the sun out, flags decorated every light pole and the entire bridge running through town heading downConnecticut’s Gold Coast toward Greenwich, and we were walking up Main Street to get an iced coffee for Patricia. When I saw him, I stoppeddead in my tracks. Duncan is tangible evidence of the very real power which the spoken word can sometimes have. If you have even an inkling ofbelief in the power of intention I would caution you to be very specific about your wants, needs and requirements.He’s fast and charms everyone who meets him as well as virtual strangers with his silent je ne sais quoi. While it was a ‘whoa’ kind of love-at-first-sight on my part I think he’s grown used to our relationship. He’s remarkably high maintenance for middle age requiring the regularministrations of a half a dozen skilled professionals in three states. If he can know anything at all, it’s that his physical needs will be attended toeven if it means a level of financial sacrifice which I am often hard put to accommodate. My dearest friends recognise that there might have beenmore practical choices but freely acknowledge that my identity and his are now inexplicably, and imperfectly, linked. There’s a very real truth totheir words, “it’s hard to imagine you with any other.”As a point of clarity, Duncan is not the man in my life. Rather he is my beloved 1989 Saab 900 Turbo convertible, manual transmission, blackwith tan leather interior (is there any other combination?) with just under 100,000 miles on his odometer. His story is part of my own andobviously relevant to my life’s philosophy.At the time I met Duncan I had been out of work as a director of marketing communications, largely in the Internet Technology space, for nearlythree years. I had held my life together with bits of thread and duct tape, with the help of friends, an amazing ex-husband whose generous spiritand integrity should be the standard for how former spouses interact with their ex’s and selling personal possessions on eBay.© There was nothingPublished 2011 by Teresa FritschiAll That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window, Copyright © 2011 by Teresa A. Fritschi. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrievalsystem, transmitted in any form or by any means including digital, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, facsimile or conveyed via the Internet or a Website without prior written permission of thepublisher; one exception to be made in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and articles.Library of Congress Cataloguing-in-Publication-Data(application being processed)Fritschi, Teresa A, 1961–All That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window by Teresa A. FritschiPhilosophy 2. Self-help 3. Memoir 4. Travel-log 5. Meditations on relevance –aging
  3. 3. Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Amazonhttp://amzn.to/v1779t (print and Kindle), Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/yFkx9v and Lulu (Nook and iPad) http://bit.ly/rK9SyYglamorous about it—it was hard. Many friends expressed wonder that I wasn’t sitting on the floor in a corner in a white jacket which buckled inthe back, drooling on myself. The thought had crossed my mind more than once.The weekend started with a rental car for which I really had no idea how I was going to pay when the bill came due, a 380 mile one way trip for a3PM interview on the Friday afternoon of a holiday weekend, and a very-necessary-to-land consulting role at Pfizer’s Global Research andDevelopment Headquarters.In 1998 I had the good fortune to land a position with an emerging technology company called CertCo, LLC. I had worked every angle andconnection imaginable for three months, ultimately getting in the door through ‘a friend of a friend’ at Banker’s Trust Venture Capital andclaiming the position as my own just as my unemployment was about to run out. I was the primary point of contact for launching the consortia ofinternational commercial banks and their technology partner’s (CertCo) identity platform named on my watch as Identrust. Six years later Pfizerwas about to apply the same business model and technology to create a uniform identity platform which would reduce its environmental impactand improve efficiencies across seven business units and impact 250,000 people on a global basis.At the time I was not aware I was ‘connected’ to anyone at Pfizer to help make this happen. Four weeks before the invoice for legal services andincorporation for Thistle & Broom© had come in for over £900 and I looked at my ceiling and said out-loud “God, I have followed all yourmessages to bring to this point. But now, if you really want me to do this, I need a job.”A week later, out-of-the-blue, I received a phone call from the man who had inherited my job with Identrust in 2001. Paul said, “I am in the carwith the hiring manager at Pfizer. You might be the only communications person on the planet who could walk into this job. No one in the role haslasted more than three weeks so I wouldn’t relocate. The contract is set up on renewable three month terms. Are you available? Are youinterested? Name your price.” Obviously the answer was yes to the first two questions but I had never done any Fortune 50 consulting before—how do you price your expertise within a very narrow technology and business model for a very big company and not look seriously stupid?Published 2011 by Teresa FritschiAll That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window, Copyright © 2011 by Teresa A. Fritschi. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrievalsystem, transmitted in any form or by any means including digital, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, facsimile or conveyed via the Internet or a Website without prior written permission of thepublisher; one exception to be made in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and articles.Library of Congress Cataloguing-in-Publication-Data(application being processed)Fritschi, Teresa A, 1961–All That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window by Teresa A. FritschiPhilosophy 2. Self-help 3. Memoir 4. Travel-log 5. Meditations on relevance –aging
  4. 4. Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Amazonhttp://amzn.to/v1779t (print and Kindle), Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/yFkx9v and Lulu (Nook and iPad) http://bit.ly/rK9SyYSo I drove to New London, CT, and got through the interview just fine (Scott, the hiring manager—literally a rocket scientist—was great, less sohis boss David who struck me as one of those people promoted along the way to get him actually out of the way) but then it’s out of my hands.There’s no way I can physically turn the car around, my sciatica was acting up, and drive back 380 miles to return the car before Enterprise©closed. So in a manner of speaking I was stuck with the rental, unlimited mileage across New England, for the weekend.Patricia is putting me up at her place near Litchfield; I plan to stop to prowl through its antique shops ‘sightseeing’ Sunday on my return trip. So Idrive the two hours north and west of New London to her place.We have a lovely evening, pack provisions and agree that stopping at (yum) Trader Joe’s © makes sense to fill out our planned picnic.En route Patricia says, ‘If you land the job at Pfizer you can afford to buy any car you want.’My reply is totally unrealistic but pretty specific. “Yeah, I know. Honestly all I really want is a pre-GM,© late model Saab© convertible. A fivespeed, preferably black with a tan leather interior, low mileage, no rust and never been in an accident.”Less than two hours later, sitting in the public parking lot on Main Street Westport with an ugly neon orange For Sale sign in the window E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G I had expressed that I wanted in my ‘next car’ was sitting in front of me. I got down on the ground to check the under-carriage(be assured if you’ve never been to Westport this kind of behaviour is frowned upon) the frame is straight and, as far as I can tell, the car iscompletely rust free. I write down the VIN to do a CarFax© check, note the phone number and because I don’t know if the Pfizer job is mine or notI do nothing further. Two weeks pass and phone calls are being made back and forth negotiating start dates and money, feeling a little moreconfident about the future I called about the car. I knew how little I could live on and still be ‘happy’ (the answer is virtually nothing!) but makingThistle & Broom a reality was going to take serious money and though my work place ultimately was less than 2 miles from the apartment Irented, a car for grocery shopping was going to be very necessary—I just failed to adequately judge the cost of owning Duncan. The wife answersthe phone, can’t recall the car even being out of the garage over the last month and her husband had pulled the ad from the paper. When I tell herPublished 2011 by Teresa FritschiAll That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window, Copyright © 2011 by Teresa A. Fritschi. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrievalsystem, transmitted in any form or by any means including digital, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, facsimile or conveyed via the Internet or a Website without prior written permission of thepublisher; one exception to be made in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and articles.Library of Congress Cataloguing-in-Publication-Data(application being processed)Fritschi, Teresa A, 1961–All That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window by Teresa A. FritschiPhilosophy 2. Self-help 3. Memoir 4. Travel-log 5. Meditations on relevance –aging
  5. 5. Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Amazonhttp://amzn.to/v1779t (print and Kindle), Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/yFkx9v and Lulu (Nook and iPad) http://bit.ly/rK9SyYwhen and where I saw it she’s astonished (me too) as it turns out that the car and I shared this finite block of hour and a half of time in Westport.Yes, it’s still for sale, she’ll have her husband call me back. I am so grateful for Scott’s, and in turn David’s boss Ann being from Rochester, NY.Ann seeing my resume with a Rochester address weeks before, had said something to the effect of ‘Hello? Rochester? Why haven’t we spoken tothis woman?’ It’s largely because of Ann that I was on-boarded in record time—under three weeks—that Thistle & Broom exists and Duncan ismine. Thanks so much, still, Ann!Cars, just as lovers, can be equally unresponsive to someone other than their master or mistress—no dominatrix reference intended. The clutchsynchronisation on most manual transmissions somehow becomes an extension of the cars’ primary driver. As I had to have the transmission andclutch replaced within a month of taking possession, Duncan’s is no exception. Aside from the nuances of his shifting he developed a tendency tostall if he got too warm or, more specifically, if it was too warm outside and he also got too warm—I can’t recall if it was the thermostat orrheostat. How we avoided any, let alone a serious, accident is absolutely beyond comprehension. Until I could afford to have the problemdiagnosed and subsequently fixed, I developed an unimagined level of patience for this cloying behaviour because I don’t do well in the heateither. Surely his Swedish origins deserved a little tolerance on my part since he wasn’t built to positively respond to the heat wave which pouredover the Tri-State area and New England during the summer of 2006.I had to be in Scotland for an extended period of time. My friend Alan agreed to collect and park him someplace inexpensive until he could bedriven out to the North Fork of Long Island where I was living in Alan’s deceased mother’s senior citizens community (minimum age requirement55 unless staying as a guest, tongues evidently wagged for which I was blissfully unaware until Alan told me some four years later). Duncan wasleft in a mid-town Manhattan garage not far from Alan’s office. Despite being educated in posh English schools by his Scottish parents and a‘serious’ businessman, Alan has come to have some level of pleasurable regard for my considerable idiosyncrasies and maintains particular goodhumour about Duncan—although I am quite certain he’s never named a vehicle he has driven in his entire life. To this day he remains the onlyperson other than me or one of his mechanics to ever drive Duncan—mind you not without slapstick humourous results, which five years on stillPublished 2011 by Teresa FritschiAll That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window, Copyright © 2011 by Teresa A. Fritschi. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrievalsystem, transmitted in any form or by any means including digital, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, facsimile or conveyed via the Internet or a Website without prior written permission of thepublisher; one exception to be made in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and articles.Library of Congress Cataloguing-in-Publication-Data(application being processed)Fritschi, Teresa A, 1961–All That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window by Teresa A. FritschiPhilosophy 2. Self-help 3. Memoir 4. Travel-log 5. Meditations on relevance –aging
  6. 6. Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Amazonhttp://amzn.to/v1779t (print and Kindle), Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/yFkx9v and Lulu (Nook and iPad) http://bit.ly/rK9SyYmake me laugh so hard as to prevent me from catching my breath. In fairness Alan did indicate his ability to drive a standard transmission. Still, Ithink his middle name should be ‘chivalry.’I should share, for those unfamiliar with pre-GM Saabs or the history of the company in the first instance, that the company tag line is Born ofJets.TM The instrument panels are very much like that of a single engine airplane (I only know that because I was terrified of turning 30 and tookone up ONCE to get over both fears) laid out neatly in front of you and remarkably intuitive. The ignition on Duncan sits on the floor console (nodrag on the ignition switch from too many keys on a key ring) between the driver and passenger seat, behind the stick and in front of the handbrake and the electronic controls for the windows. But in a dark garage, at the end of the day, who has time to learn this when dozens of impatientNew Yorkers are behind you wanting to get home to Greenwich or out to The Hamptons? As the car was running there was little issue about thislack of familiarity and Alan headed out into the mass of midtown Manhattan humanity. His tetchy habit of stalling when warm kicked in soonerthan ‘normal’ at the rather inopportune narrowing of 66th Street at Central Park as Alan attempted to exit the city toward Merrimac. It is anunenviable position, Friday evening Manhattan rush hour stalled in a car and you don’t know where the ignition is so you can restart the car again.Suffice to say Alan and Duncan’s Paso Doble was not stellar and though Alan prevailed he wanted to crawl under a rock from embarrassment. Ican only imagine Alan’s perfect courtly behaviour almost wishing Duncan to assume human form at the conclusion of this drive so he might issuea challenge to dual to gain his satisfaction.Seven years into our ‘partnership,’ only three of which I have generated a regular pay-check, maintenance costs related to oil changes, tires,system flushes and the occasional belts notwithstanding, Duncan has had at minimum: a new head gasket, transmission and clutch, new exhaustsystem, new water pump, modified AC unit and new compressor and relay switch, driver, passenger and windshield glass replaced, brakes androtor pads (his were original and finally seized up), a new ragtop and then, later, because something was wrong with the headliner a new one ofthose, new radiator, not one but two alternators and, of course, two batteries, a duplicate set of original issue alloy rims (because, the price for fourwas less than one would have been and the rubber was still in great shape), exhaustive work to ensure directional signals worked and thendashboard viewing could take place. A new “old” replacement passenger door and hood have been located to combat the small amounts of rustPublished 2011 by Teresa FritschiAll That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window, Copyright © 2011 by Teresa A. Fritschi. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrievalsystem, transmitted in any form or by any means including digital, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, facsimile or conveyed via the Internet or a Website without prior written permission of thepublisher; one exception to be made in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and articles.Library of Congress Cataloguing-in-Publication-Data(application being processed)Fritschi, Teresa A, 1961–All That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window by Teresa A. FritschiPhilosophy 2. Self-help 3. Memoir 4. Travel-log 5. Meditations on relevance –aging
  7. 7. Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Amazonhttp://amzn.to/v1779t (print and Kindle), Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/yFkx9v and Lulu (Nook and iPad) http://bit.ly/rK9SyYsuddenly appearing on his 24 year old body. He leaks like a sieve when you go through a car wash, requiring his own set of towels ever present inthe trunk to block water, soap and fluffy blue and pink wax from coming in the tiniest gap in the driver’s side window and covering me. I amprobably the only straight woman on the planet that currently has a ‘just in case’ brand new clutch sitting on her kitchen floor next to the onionbasket under the chrome cart holding her cookware. I view the accompanying stack of receipts for Duncan’s ‘spa treatments’ as my car paymentsand the related expense ensures that he will be the last car I ever drive. I humbly attribute my affection for driving Duncan to the fact that one ofthe most extraordinary female actresses ever to grace the screen, Katherine Hepburn, drove her own stick shift Saab up until almost her passing.There’s two ways of looking at my relationship with Duncan, and, frankly quite equally, for coping with the many frustrations life can offer.First, as with any relationship, there is some kind of cost/benefit ratio we constantly subconsciously matrix. If, at any time, the pleasure/joy/rewardis mitigated by the pain/expense we can (and should) simply walk away.Secondly, I accept responsibility for every one of my choices. Collectively we have gotten far too good at blaming someone else for the choiceswe make around everything from our expanding waistlines to our national debt.No one forced this car on me or the related, and sometimes crazy, costs of ownership. I brought this fully upon myself as much by specificallystating the precise car I desired to own but for also not stating that I wanted a mechanically sound car and being too stubborn to walk away fromhim. I am not proud to admit that there is also my ego involved; my friend Richard once told me I looked amazing behind his wheel, top down,music blaring, my nieces boyfriends comment that ‘your aunt drives the coolest car ever,’ occasionally someone (in any number of cities) chasesme down and begs me to take their card should I ever decide to sell. Duncan has inspired the trade-in of a much newer, mechanically soundMazda© to purchase one of his Saab cousins—a 2000 dark grey sedan now named Kyle. A couple of times the drive-thru attendant has asked me ahundred questions before my order arrived because he’s 17 and never seen a 1989 anything car let alone likely the best looking year of productionSaab ever manufactured.Published 2011 by Teresa FritschiAll That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window, Copyright © 2011 by Teresa A. Fritschi. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrievalsystem, transmitted in any form or by any means including digital, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, facsimile or conveyed via the Internet or a Website without prior written permission of thepublisher; one exception to be made in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and articles.Library of Congress Cataloguing-in-Publication-Data(application being processed)Fritschi, Teresa A, 1961–All That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window by Teresa A. FritschiPhilosophy 2. Self-help 3. Memoir 4. Travel-log 5. Meditations on relevance –aging
  8. 8. Follows is the 3rd chapter of All That I Need, Or Live Like A Dog With Its Head Stuck Out the Car Window - available on Amazonhttp://amzn.to/v1779t (print and Kindle), Barnes & Noble http://bit.ly/yFkx9v and Lulu (Nook and iPad) http://bit.ly/rK9SyYA vintage car of any kind is a purse emptying folly much like restoring an old house; what joy is mine to own something so utterly irresponsible?At the end of the day I could drive something ‘reliable’ but what fun would that be?Published 2011 by Teresa FritschiAll That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window, Copyright © 2011 by Teresa A. Fritschi. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrievalsystem, transmitted in any form or by any means including digital, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, facsimile or conveyed via the Internet or a Website without prior written permission of thepublisher; one exception to be made in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical reviews and articles.Library of Congress Cataloguing-in-Publication-Data(application being processed)Fritschi, Teresa A, 1961–All That I Need, or live like a dog with its head stuck out the car window by Teresa A. FritschiPhilosophy 2. Self-help 3. Memoir 4. Travel-log 5. Meditations on relevance –aging
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