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By: Jason Giacchino

January 2008 - Off The Pegs

Big Ideas/ Little Budget

Passing on this one is going to bother me for a long, long time.
Passing on this one is going to bother me for a long, long time.

I would like to tell you that my iron will prevented me from getting into ATV-related financial ruin this season, but the truth of the matter is that I nearly got myself into trouble not once but twice; two days in a row no less.

Let me backtrack for a moment to get those readers who are not yet familiar with my endless desire to acquire quads I can barely afford, and simply state for the record that this is the season for giving and sharing, last I heard, and not borrowing and bargaining.  Even still, I happened across an advertisement in the local classifieds that stopped me in my proverbial jolly tracks.

Nestled within a cluster of utility and beginner models was one very tempting 2001 Honda 400EX.  Gone was the scratched up stock plastic of red and black motif and in its place shiny silver and black Maier bits with matching seat cover.  Stock tires replaced with the ever-popular ITP Holeshots and exhaust duties handled by Yoshimura wrapped in lovely carbon fiber, of course.  If all of this tantalization doesn’t quicken your pulse, perhaps the asking price will: $1300 would take her home.

I was on the phone so quickly Paris Hilton could have picked up a few pointers! It turned out the owner still had it and had received an offer of $1400 a few minutes earlier sight unseen.  He would hold it for me if I had the cash and was willing to head over to his house that same night.  Enter the second snag (the first, of course, being the fact that I really don’t have $1300 to drop on another ATV): The seller’s house was a little over two hours drive each way. Considering that I would have to borrow my grandfather’s pickup truck to make the voyage, my chances were slipping quickly away.

I resorted to the ever classic: “Let me call you tomorrow” form of procrastination. After many sleepless hours of figuring, calculating, and scheming, I accepted the inevitable truth that I would have to let this deal pass me by.  A note to whoever did snag this beauty, please email me to say that indeed the deal was too good to be true, even if you have to lie about it.

Can't cry over spilled milk. Crying over a Quadzilla, however, is allowed.
Can't cry over spilled milk. Crying over a Quadzilla, however, is allowed.

Still recovering from the pain of missing out on the 400EX, I foolishly returned to said classifieds the following day in an effort to get myself into new impossible situations.  Low and behold, filling in the gap where once the Honda ad existed was a 1990 Suzuki LT500.  Indeed the Quadzilla itself, kept stock except for periodic maintenance and a set of nerf bars.  Perhaps not the most exotic performance model of all time, but I have yet to reveal the price: $1200 this time around. In the event that you aren’t up on your LT500 book value figures, this is well under the going rate these days.

Having just been through this exercise a day earlier, my instinct was to immediately start re-prioritizing funds while securing transportation for the voyage (which was roughly half the distance as it would have been to pick up the Honda).  This time the quad was already sold before my phone call could be placed. To be honest, that actually stung a little less than knowing I would have to foil the deal through my own procrastination.

I am pleased to report, however, that today the classifieds reveal no ads in which I am scrambling around in a panic to purchase. Probably for the best considering this kind of stimulation could be dangerous to one’s health when experienced in excess. Still, I’ll have to check the ads again tomorrow because there’s nothing quite like the highs and lows of almost making it all work out.

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