In which a group of graying eternal amateurs discuss their passions, interests and obsessions, among them: movies, art, politics, evolutionary biology, taxes, writing, computers, these kids these days, and lousy educations.

E-Mail Donald
Demographer, recovering sociologist, and arts buff

E-Mail Fenster
College administrator and arts buff

E-Mail Francis
Architectural historian and arts buff

E-Mail Friedrich
Entrepreneur and arts buff
E-Mail Michael
Media flunky and arts buff


We assume it's OK to quote emailers by name.







Try Advanced Search


  1. Seattle Squeeze: New Urban Living
  2. Checking In
  3. Ben Aronson's Representational Abstractions
  4. Rock is ... Forever?
  5. We Need the Arts: A Sob Story
  6. Form Following (Commercial) Function
  7. Two Humorous Items from the Financial Crisis
  8. Ken Auster of the Kute Kaptions
  9. What Might Representational Painters Paint?
  10. In The Times ...


CultureBlogs
Sasha Castel
AC Douglas
Out of Lascaux
The Ambler
PhilosoBlog
Modern Art Notes
Cranky Professor
Mike Snider on Poetry
Silliman on Poetry
Felix Salmon
Gregdotorg
BookSlut
Polly Frost
Polly and Ray's Forum
Cronaca
Plep
Stumbling Tongue
Brian's Culture Blog
Banana Oil
Scourge of Modernism
Visible Darkness
Seablogger
Thomas Hobbs
Blog Lodge
Leibman Theory
Goliard Dream
Third Level Digression
Here Inside
My Stupid Dog
W.J. Duquette


Politics, Education, and Economics Blogs
Andrew Sullivan
The Corner at National Review
Steve Sailer
Samizdata
Junius
Joanne Jacobs
CalPundit
Natalie Solent
A Libertarian Parent in the Countryside
Rational Parenting
Public Interest.co.uk
Colby Cosh
View from the Right
Pejman Pundit
Spleenville
God of the Machine
One Good Turn
CinderellaBloggerfella
Liberty Log
Daily Pundit
InstaPundit
MindFloss
Catallaxy Files
Greatest Jeneration
Glenn Frazier
Jane Galt
Jim Miller
Limbic Nutrition
Innocents Abroad
Chicago Boyz
James Lileks
Cybrarian at Large
Hello Bloggy!
Setting the World to Rights
Travelling Shoes


Miscellaneous
Redwood Dragon
IMAO
The Invisible Hand
ScrappleFace
Daze Reader
Lynn Sislo
The Fat Guy
Jon Walz

Links


Our Last 50 Referrers







« Sign of the Times | Main | Slow »

June 24, 2004

Dept. of Too Damn Much Tech

Dear Vanessa --

My candidate for "Least-Needed Rental Car Feature":

Has anyone ever actually used one of these things to get to where they wanted to go? All I've ever managed to do with one is bruise my knee.

Best,

Michael

posted by Michael at June 24, 2004




Comments

In fact, I used one to find a casino last time I was in Chicago. Thank the Lord they didn't have a strip club category, or I would have lost money that night.

Posted by: Scott Chaffin on June 24, 2004 1:35 AM



I have a female one with an incredibly sexy Flemish accent. Which has already lead to some weird conversations while I was on the phone, and she interrupted me with directions.

"Who is that with you then?"

But, it is reasonably capable to guide me around traffic jams and to get me in and out cities, both in my own country and abroad. It's okay.

Posted by: ijsbrand on June 24, 2004 6:50 AM



My brother-in-law and his family came to invade our personal space with a "family" visit, heavily leaning on the "Our lives are so much more interesting than yours" theme. Their rental had this feature. Every five minutes from their departure form the airport to their incursion into our home 40 minutes later, he called to let us know, thanks to this "feature", how closer they were to us and what theie ETA was. As this feature is now permanently associated with undesired visits, I've resolved to rent cars ONLY from companies not hawking them.

Posted by: DarkoV on June 24, 2004 10:15 AM



Michael you cowardly Luddite! (JUST kidding.)

Sorry, but I love these navigators. They not only get you where you want to go and teach you something about where you are along the way, they also give you something to play with after the first half-hour of driving.

Of course they're better when they're built in.

Posted by: John Massengale on June 24, 2004 12:57 PM



You guys are all much better with these devices than I am, I guess. I find using them unbelievably cumbersome, where I like futzing with paper maps. I do like the little plonk-plonk-plonk sounds they make, though. I wonder what percentage of people who rent these navigator-equipped cars actually make use of the navigators though. Extrapolating from me, I'd guess zilch. But extrapolating from you ....

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on June 24, 2004 1:24 PM



I'll chime in as another proponent, I guess. My wife and I weren't expecting to have the navigator in our rental car, and I was suspicious at first. But we were westerners (Denver) in New England (Boston/Hartford) for the first time, and I think that's why it was so useful. Not only are the interchanges strange, but the whole philosophy of highway building is disorienting. (Not to mention Denverites get lazy at navigation when the mountains are always to the west.) The navigator was invaluable for us and we figured out how it worked (ignoring all the fancy stuff) pretty easily.

I was surprised by the nuances it could communicate. It got us through quite a few hairy New England interchanges.

I wouldn't have one on my personal vehicle, because it's not as good as a trained human brain. But I'd consider it a substantial perk in renting a vehicle for a trip to an unfamiliar urban location.

Posted by: Chris Floyd on June 25, 2004 2:37 PM






Post a comment
Name:


Email Address:


URL:


Comments:



Remember your info?