Maggie Rants [and Raves]

Totally Off Track ...

by Maggie Franklin | January 26, 2009

So I got a new car!


Since this is a nails-related blog, I will spare you the details of the transaction, and refrain from offering a certain online auto brokerage any free advertisement, but I would like to say that I'm incredibly pleased with my buying experience and am now cruising the streets of town in a 2009 Nissan Sentra — which is bone stock, with a black exterior, a gray interior, and a six-speed standard transmission. And it was the only one like that available in the entire state of California!


Many times I have had conversations with other techs about what a nail tech should drive. Hmm. If you drive around town in a beat up, 20-year-old Pinto, people tend to look at your wheels and come to the conclusion that maybe you aren't making very good money.


And if you're not making very good money, then you probably don't have a very good job. Once they know what you do, they figure you must not be very good at it. So people avoid you like the plague because they based their first impression of you on the car you drive.


Well — avoiding lectures on not judging books by their covers — the truth of the matter is that people do just that. Which is why there are people making very good money — and consequently driving very impressive cars — designing fancy packaging for products that may or may not be as good as they look.


On the other hand, if you drive around town in a top-of-the-line S Class, people find out you do nails and they think, "Well she's obviously is doing just fine, she doesn't need my money!" People do not like the idea that their nail techs might be making more money than they are! And if you are driving something that your clients can only dream of being able to afford someday, you risk alienating your clientele.


Which is a weird observation that I've noted throughout the years — and don't think it didn't influence my recent new car decision.


I expect the new Sentra will make a proud statement. Black looks classy and has a way of dressing up any type of car (I just have to remember to keep it clean, which might be a challenge for a dirt-worshipping hippy girl who's been driving a 4-wheel-drive Jeep Cherokee for the last six years). The Sentra is also not the cheapest car I could have bought, but far from the most expensive. I think it falls comfortably into the realm of the types of cars that my clientele — and my target clientele — drives. It is cute and young enough for the teenagers, and practical and grown-up enough for the adults.


All I need now is to find a nice Hungarian lesbian couple to tell me what my new car's gender is and find a good name for it! Then I'll decide what I want my new license plates to say.

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