The Bee's Pajamas

Photography, politics and random other stuff from an aging Aspie brain

Death of an Angel


Two years ago last month, I acquired a 2006 Saturn Ion. I had been driving a 2002 Saturn SL1 that was on its last legs (wheels?),  and I was able to replace it with the 2006 for a price that was most likely less than it would have cost me to fix the SL1.

I named her Angel, in honor of several human angels who made our relationship possible: Mitch, who sold her to me (and repaired her AC at no charge when it crapped out on day 5); John and Jamie, who lent me the money to purchase her; and another John, who repaired the various issues she developed over the years and got her through two inspection cycles.

I have been driving Uber since June 2017, first with the SL1 and then with Angel.

Three days ago, I proudly posted on Facebook that Angel had reached 268,000 miles. I was looking forward to her reaching 300,000. Then the next day, this happened.

I will spare you the details of the accident — only that it involved dense fog that kept me from seeing the large black Toyota SUV that hit me.

I allowed myself to be transported to the hospital to get checked out, because of the son/grandson of some folks I am close to. He was in a car crash, refused medical attention because he felt fine, and succumbed a day later to massive internal injuries.

Fortunately, I’m OK. A superficial scalp wound and a banged-up left knee and right foot. Angel was not so lucky.

She was my third Saturn. Ten years ago I would have laughed at anyone who told me I would voluntarily buy any GM product, but I came to love Saturns for their longevity. All three were past 250,000 miles when they died. Angel was well on her way to the 300-thousandsies.

I used to tell my Uber riders, “Saturns are bulletproof — you can’t kill them with an ax!” That may be true, but it turns out you can kill them with an invisible Toyota.

R.I.P., Angel.

2 thoughts on “Death of an Angel

  1. Pingback: What’s Up in the Neighborhood, October 12 2019 – Chuck The Writer

  2. Saturn was the best thing GM did in a long time. The catch is that the culture of Saturn was incompatible with the culture of the rest of GM, which meant that in the long run they either had to change Saturn to be like the rest of GM, or they had to change the rest of GM to be like Saturn.

    The company chose poorly. They undid all of the things that made Saturn special, which left people with no particular reason to buy them. For the record, those were a less adversarial labor contract, a commitment to quality, long model runs (which were connected to that commitment to quality), and haggle-free buying.

    Although it was not sold under the Saturn brand (or at all, you could only lease it) or built in the Saturn plant, the ill-fated GM EV1, the subject of the documentary Who Killed The Electric Car, was based on a Saturn design.

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